However, all that was washed away by the exciting news that she has been awarded a 50th Anniversary UKZN Scholarship for her outstanding academic performance.
‘When I became sick, it was difficult for me to balance my health with study demands. I had to stop my studies but was determined not to give in,” said Bana. ‘I eventually got better and started all over again, managing to achieve way beyond my expectations.’
Mbana says the scholarship is a stepping stone to greater opportunities. Her goal is to maintain a good academic record while working towards her honours degree next year in Linguistics. ‘I am interested in doing in depth research in my field with the goal of having completed my masters five years from now. The field of linguistics has a wide reach and I am especially interested in its potential for bettering our education sector.’
Mbana thanked the funders of the scholarship. ‘My grandmother was so happy when I told her that I had received a scholarship from UKZN. She can now rest easy knowing there is a way forward for me.’
Mbana says scholarships simplify life for students. ‘They encourage us to do our best. The recognition, over and above the monetary reward, make the hard work and perseverance worth it.’