Mr Tejmé Saien receives his award from UKZN Chief Financial Officer, Ms Nontuthuko Mbhele.

Mr Tejmé Saien’s love for science started early in his life and has always found it easy to navigate his way through his studies.

In his matric year, 2016, he was awarded a certificate from the National Research Foundation (NRF) and the South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA) for being one of the top 50 students who participated in the National Senior Science Olympiad for Biology in the SADC region in that year.

Saien, who is pursuing a BSc in Biological Sciences, is one of this year’s recipients of the Malegapuru W Makgoba Scholarship awarded to the five top-ranked undergraduate students proceeding from first to second year in the four colleges of the University. The scholarship is named after Professor Malegapuru W Makgoba, the former first Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Studying at the University of KwaZulu-Natal has always been a dream for Saien as the University is in the top 500 leading academic institutions of the world and is distinguished in its science and research disciplines.

‘UKZN has also become a part of my family having had many family members complete their degrees to become alumni,’ he said.

Saien aspires to one day use his love for science to discover breakthroughs to real-world problems.  His parents said that he has always been a hard worker and this scholarship is a reward for that.

Words: Ntokozo Dladla

Photographer: Rajesh Jantilal