“ I was brilliant from day one, from high school and even at work. I don’t consider myself more intelligent than other people, I consider myself as a hard worker. When people told me I would not make it, I turned that into positives,” says Africa’s youngest medical doctor, Sandile Khubeka, who featured at MTC Masters of Success here recently.
After matriculating at the age of 15, DR Khubeka studied for five years to obtain his MBChB degree with distinction in obstetrics and gynaecology, and became one of the “talk of Africa”. At a very early age, DR Khubeka was ahead of his peers all his life when it comes to academic achievement. Qualifying at the age of 20, he might have missed out on his teen years but he is confidently ready to leave his mark. “I’m a perfectionist. I love things to be done my way. I believe you can be good in everything you do. I want to be that doctor able to achieve what other people couldn’t achieve.”
Growing up without a father figure, did not have an influence on DR Khubeka’s life, because his mother’s love made him understand that he didn’t need someone else. “She bred us [well up] and she always [has] been there for us. I hope all single mothers will do the same,” he says.
Graduating at the age of 15 was one of his memorable moments. He says his inspiration come from fellow young people who want to be the best. One of DR Khubeka’s hidden talent is his passion for reading. “I started reading at the very young age. I wanted to learn, have knowledge and most of all I wanted to know more.” The doctor adds that what makes his career exciting is his love to help people. “I felt medical school was hard. You can’t rely on opening the book once. You need to be inspired in whatever you do, most importantly love your job,” he inspires. One way of managing success in one dimension is to balance one’s life and prioritising, he further motivates.
“You don’t need a degree to be successful but it’s a requirement to have it because that’s where you learn to master a lot of things, you get to shape yourself and it will assist you in being the best in whatever job you apply for,” he emphasises education. DR Khubeka says the aspiration to help people is important. “If you don’t want to help people, you will always work alone.”
He encourages young people to be themselves and always try to inspire the next person. “Be successful and be the best in what you do. Be involved in outreach and help people were you can. Be a happy person and just be an inspiration by being involved. [Through] little things you will inspire other people. Leave your mark and later people can remember you.”
His advice to the young people who want to achieve goal in life is, “dream big, work smart and do better than me”.
DR Khubeka is serving his internship at Grey’s Hospital in Pietermaritzburg and hopes to eventually register for a Masters of Medicine degree, specialising in Internal Medicine and to super specialise at some stage in Endocrinology. He was voted by the class of 2013 as the “next Minister of Health”.