In a world filled with divergent views and aspirations, Dr Lone Nthobelang (30) has found his in education.
“Not everyone wants a Master’s or a PhD due to differing priorities. It just so happens that education ranks highly in my list of priorities. It takes a great deal of commitment and passion to successfully rise up to these levels of formal education and that alone should be enough to amp one up if acquiring a PhD is what they really want,” she says.
Dr. Nthobelang also says it is important to align ones decisions with their goals and if a Master’s or PhD does not align with one’s desired path, it simply doesn’t.
According to statistics Botswana unemployment rate went up by 1.3 percentage points, from 23.2 percent in quarter one of 2020, to 24.5 percent in quarter four 2020. Youth unemployment rate went up by 1.9 percentage point over the period, from 30.5 to 32.4 percent.
Though he admits that unemployment is a big issue in Botswana and across the world and seems to be getting worse due to the Covid-19 pandemic, he strongly believes it would be wrong of him to suggest that many young people don’t educationally advance themselves because of the unemployment predicament.
At the age of 30, Dr Nthobelang has honored the promise he had made to his late grandfather, a man he says continues to shape the man he is becoming.
“The incomparable Mr Modisenyane Bobeng. He was one of the most intelligent men I knew. He was one of the people who contributed immensely in fashioning Botswana’s education system. Because we had education as our common interest, we would have long conversations about how I was going to acquire a PhD at or before the age of 30. I am honoured to have kept my promise to him: Not just because he is my grandfather, but also because he was a man who built a nation by mentoring professors, politicians, judges, doctors, lawyers, and many of this generation’s corporate moguls. Your legacy lives on, Ntate. Keep resting in power,” she says.
The son of Ernest and Gaisang Nthobelang, from a village called Mookane, situated in Mahalapye East , was recently bestowed with Doctor of Philosophy in International Relations and Diplomacy.
His educational journey began at Hillcrest Primary School where he obtained his PSLE certificate. He then advanced to Kgale Hill CJSS in pursuit of his Junior Certificate (JC) and thereafter, St Joseph’s College for his BGCSE.
In 2010 he got admitted to pursue a BA (Hons) Business Enterprise with Botswana Accountancy College (BAC). Soon after graduation in 2014 he contested for a scholarship to pursue a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University (JNTU) in India, where he graduated cum laude in 2016.
In 2018 he contested for yet another scholarship, the China Scholarship Council (CSC), which he was successfully awarded. With it, he pursued his PhD and graduated with a Doctorate of Philosophy in International Relations from Central China Normal University (CCNU) in June 2021.
His goal in pursuing a Doctorate of Philosophy in International Relations was to develop a strong foundation in theory and practice of international relations necessary to conduct groundbreaking research, as well as to improve his communication skills.
He says the program has prepared and equipped him with the knowledge and experience of foreign affairs, international market issues, political issues, and also matters pertaining to international trade.
He previously worked for the then Botswana National Sports Council (BNSC) where he was bestowed with the responsibility of setting up the International Working Group Secretariate – Women and Sports under the supervision of the then Director Ms Game Mothibi.
In 2016, he joined Devere Accuma Financial Services as a Financial Coordinator, then shifted to XAA Safaris where he resigned in 2017 as an Account Executive to independently partner with Botswana Tourism Organization (BTO) on an event project.
With his new qualification he intends to act as a source of inspiration to people with shared interests; to grow his portfolio in the corporate, development, and academic spheres, and simply just make his mark in this world.