Experiencing the diversity at UCT

Elizabeth Ipangelwa is a final-year student at the University of Cape Town in South Africa, pursing a master’s in marine and environment law. She shares her varsity experience as a foreign student in South Africa.

07 May 2019 | Education

Elizabeth Ipangelwa

I consider the University of Cape Town (UCT) to be one of the most prestigious universities to study at, because it is ranked as the best university in Africa and 156th in of the world by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings in the categories of teaching and research, citations, international outlook and industry income, which basically measures innovation, as per the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Furthermore, it has been ranked in the top 100 in the world for three subjects, namely law, social sciences and education.

UCT has a variety of professional and academic courses, ranging from leadership courses, accounting and law to health sciences that one can choose from. Being a natural resources enthusiast and having completed my bachelor of laws at the University of Namibia (Unam), I was fortunate to have been presented with a variety of courses to choose from in the area of law, such as mineral and petroleum extraction and use, commercial law, international trade, shipping law and marine and environmental law. Because my interest has always been in natural resources law, I opted to specialise in marine and environment law as my two majors.

My experience at UCT so far has been amazing. Diversity lives here and every day I get to learn something new from my peers.

Like all other Namibians studying abroad, I must say that I am indeed honored to have the opportunity of studying away from home, as this gives me an opportunity to be exposed to various academic and social aspects in life, as a define my career in the legal fraternity.

As an international student, I must say that ever since I arrived in South Africa I could relate easy, because I did not experience any difficulties in adjusting to the lifestyle or environment. I sometimes forget that I am an international student and I am only reminded when I am asked to show my identification documents.

Having lived in South Africa for the past four months, I see many opportunities for young people to engage in academically. There’s always something to do, something to see and somebody to learn from. Through my networks, I meet people from different countries at all times, which gave me an opportunity to also interact with non-South African friends.

I have visited places in Cape Town and Johannesburg. In Cape Town I have visited Table Mountain, the V&A Waterfront mall, Camps Bay, Lions Head, the Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden and Canal Walk. In Johannesburg I have visited Vilakazi Street, museums and Mandela House.

Did you know?

The University of Cape Town began as a college for boys known as the South African College, which provided secondary and tertiary education.

Facts about Elizabeth

· She is the faculty of law mentor for 2019;

· She holds a masters of laws (LLM) degree and has made a contribution to a book on leadership, which is still to be published;

· She is a Namibian Chamber of Environment (NCE) bursary beneficiary for 2019;

· She met Bill Gates last year at an international conference;

· She appreciates nature and derives pleasure from meeting new people through networking;

· She is all about making a meaningful contribution in the lives of others;

· She wants to unleash the potential of her friends and see them prosper; and

· She mentors two young girls from Namibia and five students from the University of Cape Town.

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