26 May 2021 Volume :9 Issue :20

Cum Laude for Dental Therapy Graduate

<em>Cum Laude</em> for Dental Therapy Graduate
Mr Fanele Mthethwa in the dentistry lab on UKZN’s Westville campus.

‘I am so happy to have graduated cum laude,’ said Bachelor of Dental Therapy graduate, Mr Fanele Mthethwa.

‘I was not really expecting it, I guess it was all brought by hard work, dedication and tremendous support from my family, lecturers, classmates and friends,’ he added.

Mthethwa is the youngest of four siblings and the first to graduate in his family. He hopes to open a practice to make dental care more accessible to his community.

‘People from my community have to travel far to access dental care. They thus lack advice and neglect oral care,’ he said. ‘I want to make it more accessible to people from rural areas, including my area, Ongoye in Empangeni.’

He said his final year was challenging as COVID-19 brought about online learning and delayed clinical practicals. ‘However, as a class, together with our lecturers, we were able to emerge triumphant. We will be forever grateful to our lecturers for their endless patience and support.’

Mthethwa described his journey at UKZN as fantastic. ‘I really relished my time there. I enjoyed myself as the class representative, interacting with people from different backgrounds. I am proud and humbled to have been part and parcel of this wonderful institution.’

He is a qualified South African Breweries (SAB) Regional League eThekwini Region Referee and is currently a dental therapist in a private practice in Umlazi, Durban.

Words: Nombuso Dlamini

Photograph: Rogan Ward

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