Mr Lindokuhle Ntombela raises a fist in the air as he receives his BSc Honours in Physics, summa cum laude.

The Not So Ordinary Physicist

Graduating in Physics at Honours level is something out of the ordinary! And that extraordinary feat was achieved by Mr Lindokuhle Ntombela.

Ntombela’s results were indicative of a student who was disciplined and hardworking and these very attributes have been attested to by his supervisor, Professor Naven Chetty. ‘Lindo shows great ability as a leader and proved to be an excellent role model and peer counsellor to his fellow class mates, and has been methodical and meticulous in all of his submissions thus far. Coming from a disadvantaged background, his outstanding results of a summa cum laude pass at honours level indicate his perseverance and tenacity in his stride towards obtaining a university degree. He was dependant on financial aid and his outstanding results shows his drive to not lose this funding, but to achieve his dreams even in the face of such adversity,’ said Chetty.

Chetty, who worked closely with Ntombela, is positive that an illustrious career in the field of Physics was in store for Ntombela in the near future.

Ntombela has been described as someone who is ever willing to assist fellow students, for example his demonstrations to the first year Physics classes. The demonstrations require a great deal of patience and understanding as the students in this programme come from previously disadvantaged communities and need substantial assistance with the basics of the subject.

Ntombela believes the secret to his success was maintaining good time management. ‘University is academically challenging as some modules require much more effort and time. I created my own timetable and study plan. I made sure that I attended all my classes, and tried to complete all the assignments and tutorials accurately and in the allocated time. I set aside a number of hours for studies, but still made time to enjoy my house jams and soccer matches on the weekend.’

He lives by the adage: “If not now, then when? If not us, then who?” He attributed his successes to his family who have been very supportive over the years. Ntombela hopes to complete a PhD in Physics in the future.

Words: Swastika Maney