Nomhle Ngwenya

PhD candidate at the University of the Witwatersrand


You are never too young to enter STEM and make an impact.

What do you do?

I am a scientist researching on how low-carbon technologies can be sustainably financed in developing countries such as South Africa.

Why did you choose this field?

One of my favourite subjects in school was Geography. My passion in geography fuelled my interest in issues relating to environmental studies and climate change. I knew that I would always be intrigued and hence my continuous pursuit to gain knowledge, many years later!

What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?

My biggest achievement to date has definitely been enrolling for my PhD and I wish the younger me would have believed in herself so much more and had a little bit of faith that everything would work out the way it should!

Why do you love working in STEM?

I love working in STEM because I am part of many that are breaking stereotypes such as being young, black and female. I am also passionate about being at the forefront of ground-breaking discoveries that have the potential of making a bigger impact in society.

Best advice for next generation?

You are never too young to enter STEM and make an impact. Young women will continue to have such a great platform to contribute to STEM and make a difference in their fields. Never give up and keep working hard.

Inspo quote / fun fact / role model

Michelle Obama: "Your story is what you have, what you will always have. It is something to own.”

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