Despite suffering a stroke that paralysed the left side of her body, Ms Nokubonga Sithole graduated with a Bachelor of Social Sciences degree.

She was admitted to hospital after the stroke in October 2018, received treatment and was discharged to begin her recovery at home. Despite very limited movement on her left side, she resumed her studies in March 2019. With the help of friends, she was able to attend lectures and tutorials, and was unwavering in her commitment to complete her degree on time.

Sithole not only completed all nine modules but achieved outstanding marks. ‘I had to push myself to graduate. It was physically, mentally and emotionally draining but I knew I would get through. I had to do it for my mother – she is a single parent with not much income yet she provides for the family,’ said Sithole.

She advised other students to: ‘never give up. Believe in yourself and your capabilities. Follow your dreams.’

Sithole plans to do her Honours in Psychology and is confident she will recover from her stroke. ‘I am going for physiotherapy and it is really helping. I know I will be back to my old self soon.’

Words: Melissa Mungroo

Photograph: Supplied