Johannesburg student, Dineo Mojapelo from Liberty Community College in Bramley, came out tops in the recent SAIPA | ABASA National Accounting Olympiad. Majapelo is the top female performer in the category for independent schools. The Olympiad, run by the South African Institute of Professional Accountants (SAIPA), in conjunction with the Association for the Advancement of Black Accountants of South Africa (ABASA) is an annual competition that aims to raise greater awareness of becoming a Professional Accountant (SA) as a career choice.
Mojapelo achieved a score of 88.88%, putting her on a par with fellow Gauteng private school top male performer, Ismaeel Kaka from Pretoria’s Azaadville Muslim School, and slightly behind government school performers Phuti Tshepo Moloto From Pax College in Mashashane, Limpopo, who scored 92.88% and Sumaiya Moses from Uitenhage High School in the Eastern Cape who achieved 92.44%.
“There is a perception that Olympiads are challenging,” said Mojapelo. “Well that is exactly what I wanted - a challenge - and the National Accounting Olympiad was simply a perfect platform for me to prove I can do it! Winning has given me a lot of courage. Now I feel like a different person, I have self-confidence and I believe more in my abilities.”
Mojapelo ascribes much of her success to her teacher, Precious Phida, who realised early on that she needed to be exposed to new challenges. “I said to her two years ago: ‘Dineo, in Grade 12 I want you to register and win the Olympiad.’ It was so prophetic!” he said.
Phida’s classroom approach hinges on the belief that all his learners are exceptionally gifted in some way and that his role is to boost their confidence and make them believe that they can achieve anything they want to as long as they apply themselves fully.
Describing her teacher’s input into her life, Mojapelo says: “A week does not go by without me receiving a motivational talk from Mr Phida. He propels me to work to the best of my abilities. Knowing that he believes in me makes me to want to achieve more.”
“In addition to the outstanding results of this year’s top performers, we as SAIPA and ABASA are delighted with the overall performance of the many thousands of learners who took part in this year’s competition,” said Navin Lalsab, Accreditation, Compliance and Development Executive for SAIPA.
As part of the Olympiad, all entrants are given study guides that help the learners in their schoolwork and preparation for final examinations. “Learners who perform well in Accounting are more likely to pursue it as a career option, so part of our aim is to ensure that they are as well prepared as they can possibly be for their exams,” said Lalsab.
“Given the scarcity of those who’re qualified as Professional Accountant (SA) and the importance of mathematics and accounting, SAIPA and ABASA commit to continuing, through the Olympiad, to promote professional accountancy as an attractive option for school leavers.”
PHOTO CAPTION: Dineo Mojapelo received her award at the SAIPA | ABASA NAO Gala Awards Evening
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