Siphokazi Gatyeni, grew up in Eastern Cape Province of South Africa. She completed her Masters Degree in Mathematics from University of Stellenbosch in 2015. Currently, she is working as a SAP Consultant at Zimele Technologies, where her current role is developing SAPUI5 mobile applications.
Why did you get into STEM?
I grew up as someone who liked Mathematics. So I told myself that in the university, I will study something to related with Mathematics. When I got to varsity, I enjoyed numbers and did not stop studying up until my Master’s degree. I see myself, in few years’ time, holding a PhD in Mathematics.
What do you consider your greatest achievements?
Having a Master’s Degree in Mathematics at the age of 22 was the greatest achievement for my life and I am so grateful & proud of myself.
What challenges have you faced as a woman in STEM and how did you overcome them?
Finances: Having a single parent who is a domestic worker was challenging. My mother did not have enough finances for my fees. I had to work very hard so that I can get a bursary for my post-graduate studies.
What is your advice to budding women in STEM?
As a woman, any studying or training course you enroll for is not easy. You have to be willing to work hard and it is possible to make a success of it. When I was younger, I did not plan to study mathematics up to a masters level, but once I started I enjoyed it and did not stop. I made it and you can also make it if you are determined and work hard.