Hard work paid off for Mr Curtis Swanepoel who graduated with a Master of Science in Civil Engineering.
Despite experiencing difficulties in his first year of study, Swanepoel enjoyed his journey in obtaining his masters. Through perseverance and hard work he proved himself by coming out top of his class towards the end of his undergrad degree. ‘My case study was based on a small Island off Zanzibar which was experiencing major erosion as a result of larger waves being allowed to propagate over the surrounding reef. I got to spend two months there and it was an amazing experience. Back home it was a tough couple of months putting all the information together and compiling my thesis but the long hours were worth it in the end,’ said Swanepoel.
Currently working as a Structural Engineer, Swanepoel based his master’s thesis on the effect of coral reefs on wave attenuation. Swanepoel, who plans on becoming a professionally registered engineer, hopes to find a long lasting solution to the erosion of the island. ‘Long-term, I hope to contribute toward something in my field that will be remembered,’ said Swanepoel.
He advised aspiring students to attend classes. ‘I started off first year coming with great marks in school thinking it would be super easy. I was slacking and didn’t attend many lectures. As a result, I failed most subjects and I had to basically restart first year. I knew I never wanted to go through that embarrassment ever again. I worked hard, went to class, never gave up and I definitely reaped the rewards. If you get knocked down, stand right up and show everyone what you are capable of,’ said Swanepoel.
Words: Manqoba Hadebe