After graduating and earning her degree despite her difficult living circumstances, Mponegele Jane Thole has inspired hundreds of South Africans. The single mother of four cares for her four children as a domestic worker in Centurion, close to Pretoria, and has been able to pay for her schooling, put food on the table, and maintain her household.
A single mother of four and domestic worker has got a degree.
Mponegele Jane Thole graduated from Unisa with a Bachelor of Arts in Health Sciences and Social Services.🤍❤️ pic.twitter.com/2NQQS0bt6l
— RAINBOW KID🌻🌈 (@mashoto_) July 13, 2022
Mponegele’s friend Adéle Harmse wrote on LinkedIn about the diligent woman earning her degree without the aid of scholarships or other outside funding.
“Sometimes, we would go the whole month without food. Adéle would help me here and there with food and bread, and I always made sure to work hard during the December holidays to earn cash that I could pay to Unisa. That is basically how we survived.” Said Mponegele
Thole recently stated in an interview that she intends to use her Bachelor of Arts in Health Sciences and Social Services from the University of South Africa (Unisa) to pursue a career as an industrial psychologist.
I once met a cleaner who had bcum a high flyer.
Had found temp job raising kids n cleaning houses. Her boss told her, she wouldn't end there.
True to form, I met her 6/7yrs after she'd started working as domestic.
But I met her on a plane n she was no longer a cleaner
— the Dark Viking (@jazzvilakazi) July 14, 2022
Mponegele Jane Thole did not let her difficult circumstances or limited finances prevent her from achieving her goal of graduating, and so the mother and four, originally from Thembisa, made this dream a reality.Thole shares her time between three different families while working as a domestic worker in the Centurion area, earning about R3000.
Mponegele clarifies that she would work for three various families and make about R3000. Her Unisa tuition cost her R1000 of her salary, leaving her with very little left over for food, transportation costs, rent, and any other expenses the kids could have.
Thole told Briefly News that she made the decision to complete her studies on her own, with the exception of some food assistance from one of her three employers Adele, because she had always wanted to provide her four children a better life. The 45-year-old, who is originally from Limpopo, says she had numerous difficulties raising her only child while working full-time and going to school.
“I am so happy to have obtained my qualification because I never thought I would get to this point, especially with the job I am doing as a domestic worker and needing to take care of the kids, pay rent, buy food, and pay Unisa with the small salary I earn,” said Thole.
She acknowledges that it was really difficult, but she gives God the glory for helping her get through it. She states that she aspires to get accepted to Unisa to continue her honors degree the following year now that she has her bachelor’s degree.
The determined mother might use this degree to work as an industrial psychologist in professional or corporate settings once she has earned her honors qualification.
Most of the children of the Mponegele are still in school, and her oldest son is the only one who works. “I have two boys and two daughters. My eldest son is 28, his name is Katlego, Koketso is 17, Mapaseka is 10, and Matsobane, my youngest, is 5. They are all very proud of their mommy.
After coming home from work, she would make dinner for her children, assist them with their homework, make sure they were all bathed, and then study till the wee hours of the morning. Mponegele states that even though her academic career has been extremely difficult, the sacrifices and hard work have been worthwhile.
The Unisa alumna says she loves people and that when she was younger she wanted to study medicine at the Medical University of Southern Africa (MEDUNSA). But owing to a lack of finance, the motivated woman was forced to enroll in Rhodes University’s Bachelor of Commerce in Social Sciences program, which she was not really excited about and did not ultimately complete.