Gugu Nkosi is one of the people who grew up in Embalenhle and was able to forge a better future for herself, irrespective of her background.
After she matriculated at Kusasalethu Secondary School, Gugu had to skip one year of going to the University because she did not get a bursary.
What seemed to be an unfortunate situation to her turned into an advantage since she was able to grab another opportunity of being a trainee metallurgist in one of the companies based in Westonaria.
The following year she was lucky to receive a scholarship from Sasol to go and study Chemical Engineering at the University of Cape Town.
“Studying for Chemical Engineering was the only thing I always wanted and loved to do, so even though it was not easy, I enjoyed it,’’ said Gugu.
Coming back to Sasol she went through the programme that gives graduates exposure and was later appointed a process engineer and later a senior
“Large part of my career was in the process engineering field and as time goes I realized that I do not really want to end up being a technical specialist,’’ explained Gugu who then decided to register for an MBA through Unisa.
After the completion of her MBA, she was afforded the opportunity to work in contract management and project controls, of which she ultimately joined the business development department as a business analyst.
When asked how did she managed to juggle both her career, work and being a mom, this is what she had to say, “Studying for my MBA was very tough and I had my two babies at the same time, I managed to finish by the Grace of God.
The balancing act is always a challenge.’’
Gugu was raised by uneducated parents who did not have secondary education, but they encouraged her to work very hard and make something out of her life.
The soft spoken Business Analyst could not overemphasize the role played by her teachers when she was in high school.
“The teachers played a huge role in my life by opening my eyes and identifying that I have a potential.
One of the teacher was Ms Sizakele Masilela who taught me biology by then,’’ Gugu recalls.
When asked what her normal day at work entails, she explained “As a Business Analyst the main interest is to make sure that the investments that we make into projects specifically need to be up and are economical investments.
We look at the all the proposals and ideas that people from the plant bring to the table and we have to evaluate and decide which ones are economically viable.
Basically is the justification of the projects to make sure that the money Sasol invest is invested optimally, not to invest on things that do not add value.’’
In conclusion Gugu encouraged young people to dream big in order to be successful in life.
She further advised that there are many careers inside Sasol that young people can consider and that is what she likes about her company.