College of Human Sciences

This go-getter is living her dream

Having obtained her PhD at the age of 30, Unisa lecturer Dr Koketjo Tsebe was a recipient of the 2020 Limpopo Sports Awards for her work in sport psychology and serves on the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) High-Performance Psychology Working Group. She is truly living her dream.

Ongoing recognition

Born in Mahwelereng, Limpopo, in 1989, Tsebe was recently named one of the Mail & Guardian (M&G) Top 200 Young People, thus adding to her already impressive string of accolades. Every year M&G honours the brightest, dynamic, and innovative young South Africans, and Tsebe was chosen from a list of over 5 000 nominations. She commented as follows on the accolade: “It serves as confirmation that, as a young scholar who is passionate about sport psychology, I am on the right track. It encourages me to continue working hard and contribute to the scholarship of sports and mental health, which is a niche area in South Africa. I take great pride in receiving recognition of this magnitude.”

Tsebe has also been shortlisted as a finalist for the 2021 Momentum gsport Awards in the special recognition category. The category considers an individual who goes beyond the call of duty and has made a long and positive impact on South African women in sport. Voting opened on 2 August and will close at midnight on 12 August 2021. To vote for her, click here.

Academic and work history

Tsebe is currently a lecturer at Unisa’s Department of Psychology in the College of Human Sciences (CHS). She is mainly involved in teaching the Sport Psychology module as well as supervising master’s students pursuing research in this field. She is also involved in the master’s qualification in Clinical Psychology Training, teaching the following modules: Psychological Assessment, Neuropsychology, and Family and Relationship.

Apart from being a module leader for Sport Psychology, she is also a member of the Department of Psychology’s niche areas committee. Before joining Unisa, she has worked at the University of Venda (under the DST NRF internship programme), 1 Military Hospital, Steve Biko Academic Hospital, South African Police Services, and Tshwane Rehabilitation Hospital.

Collaborations, contributions, and involvement in different organisations

Currently, Tsebe is involved in two research projects. Independently, she is busy with a research study titled “Psychosocial experiences of athletes living with disabilities in South Africa”. In addition, she is also involved in a research collaboration study titled “The impact of Covid-19 pandemic on the mental health and psychological well-being of South African athletes”. She is also co-writing a book chapter on sports psychology in South Africa.

Furthermore, Tsebe is a practising clinical psychologist registered with the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA). She is also team psychologist for the softball national team and has worked and travelled with the team both locally and internationally. She has recently been appointed by the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) board to serve as a member of the SASCOC High-Performance Psychology Working Group. As part of her community work, Tsebe provides psychological support to tertiary students sponsored by the Topisa Education, Sports, and Cultural Trust in Limpopo.

Your dreams are valid

Tsebe’s message is that one’s dreams are valid. “I am living my childhood dream of being involved in sport psychology. Every day I am reminded that as long as I work hard, commit to my roles, consult with others and prioritise my work, I can realise all my goals. I am living testimony to living one’s childhood dreams and this serves as an inspiration to me. I carry this realisation and life experience with me, knowing that I can achieve all my goals. The sky is the limit.”

*By Edgar Rathelele, Senior Media Officer, Department of Institutional Advancement

Publish date: 2021/08/12

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