News & Events

Unisa alumni share their journeys – Sibonakaliso Msane

Sibonakaliso Msane

Sibonakaliso Thamsanqa Msane was born in Shifa Hospital, Durban, on 11 June 1984.  He grew up in Ntuzuma Township and Phoenix.  He matriculated at Greenbury Secondary in 2003 and is the oldest of four siblings.  His mom has unfortunately passed on.

Sibonakaliso first registered in 2006 for an access course to do his BA Communication Science degree. He completed this degree in 2009, and his PGCE in 2014. This was followed by a BA Honours: Integrated Organisational Communication, which he completed in 2020.  Throughout his years of study he was always employed in one way or another. From 2005 to 2009 he worked as a casual employee in retail. From 2009 to 2010 he worked as a call centre agent for MTN.  He worked as a freelance writer for the Daily Sun during 2011 and 2012.  He was inspired to start freelancing because of Tsepo Matseba, former Prisa President.  At the 2020 Prisa Conference, he spoke to Mr Matseba about his frustration of not getting an internship.  Tsepo then advised him that he need not wait for an internship opportunity but could build his own profile by publishing articles.  And that is exactly what he did, so he had a portfolio of evidence to present at his interview for an internship.  

In 2012, three years after completing his qualification, he was accepted for his first internship opportunity at the eThekwini Maritime Cluster.  In 2014, he had another opportunity to intern as a news reporter for The Mercury. Between 2015 and 2016 he was employed as communications officer at eThekwini Maritime Cluster.   Since 2017, he is a maritime economics teacher and a young entrepreneur who started his own company providing writing and editing services.

In 2020 he got engaged to his first-year sweetheart and finally started publishing a couple of his blog posts, which he had been putting off for some years. This is a difficult time; it presents uncertainties and has challenged him to reimagine the future and to interrogate whether his skill set is aligned with the economy of the future.  

His message to students during the COVID-19 pandemic is that giving up is not an option.  ‘Today’s tools for survival are understanding current and future global and local trends and ensuring that you possess what the present and future will demand of you,’ he says. ‘Be diligent and innovative. There has never been a time in history that embraced innovation more than the one we are in right now.’

* By Jo Cossavella, Communications Officer, Unisa KwaZulu-Natal Region

Publish date: 2020/08/17