‘I feel honoured as well as blessed. The endless hours of studying, tears, laughter and support from my friends and family have paid off,’ said top Audiology student, Ms Aaminah Peer who also received the School of Health Science’s top Academic and Clinical skills awards.
‘My class of 2019 was extremely hard working and anyone could have been deserving of these awards,’ she added.
Twenty-two-year-old Peer’s future plans include a Masters in Audiology and working in a rewarding environment. ‘I also aspire to use my Audiology skills to make a difference in people’s lives and inspire others to do the same.’
She is a firm believer in giving back. ‘Many community members have limited knowledge regarding Audiology and I hope to spread awareness to improve their wellbeing.’
She said she faced a number of challenges in the past four years, with the most daunting being away from home for the first time. Peer hails from the small town of Kokstad and ‘adjusting to city life was a challenge. My newfound friends became my support structure and helped me through the difficult times. They were my shoulders to cry on, my calming tea buddies and my daily dose of laughter.’
She describes her experience at UKZN as a roller coaster ride of happy and stressful times. ‘UKZN provided me with facilities that allowed me to grow as a student. The Audiology department enabled me to gain experience of the real working world. Being able to see patients as early as second year is a privilege as it allows you to be hands on and interactive. UKZN gave me the opportunity to achieve my dreams,’ said Peer.
Peer comes from a close-knit family consisting of her parents, two younger brothers and her grandparents. ‘I am the first university graduate in my immediate family which makes this accomplishment even more special. My family has been extremely supportive through my four years of studying.’
She said that she has always been driven to give of her best. ‘During my school years at Kokstad College I achieved academic and cultural honours. At University, I was awarded a Dean’s Commendation and Merit Certificates over the four years,’ said Peer. She also received the Harry Gwala District Department of Health Bursary.
Peer is currently completing her community service at East Griqualand and Usher Memorial Hospital in Kokstad.
Words: Nombuso Dlamini