VUT AND TEAM SA VOLLEYBALL STAR AIMS ABOVE THE SCOREBOARDS AND BAGS A DIPLOMA IN SPORTS MANAGEMENT
By: Puleng Maphisa 14 September 2022
For Manana Innocent Mosia, a Vaal University of Technology (VUT) and Team South Africa’s Under 23 volleyball star, high performance of student-athletes in the sporting courts is important, but getting an education is still more vital. At the University’s recent Spring Graduations, the twenty-four-year-old on and off the court big scorer lived up to this frame of mind when she was conferred a Diploma in Sports Management.
Born and raised in Sebokeng which is a stone’s throw from campus, Manana enrolled with VUT in 2018 and immediately joined the University volleyball team. Although she started playing in primary school, her rise to stardom began in 2011 when she was selected to the Gauteng U13 team that went to Cape Town for Summer Games. There she won the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the Tournament and was awarded a scholarship to go to school at the Western Cape Sport School in Cape Town where her performance in the sport got an even greater boost.
Fast forward, in 2014 she made her debut for the national team that went out to represent the country in Botswana for the Youth Games. Since then, the world has been her oyster and she went on to play in countries like China, Egypt, and Mozambique, to mention some. One of her many accolades was being rated number 1 in the Team SA U23 that won the Splash Tournament that was held in Port Elizabeth in 2018. It was also at VUT’s enabling sporting environment that she was selected to go play at the World University Championships in Germany in 2018 and was part of the team that won the University Sport South Africa (USSA) beach tournament that was held in Durban in 2019.
At the graduations, the proud Manana who was raised by a single mother said her journey was never easy but getting the support from her mother and sister, was the best gift she could have ever asked for. With a smile she added: “Sometimes, being raised by a single parent, people don’t normally expect much from you, and sometimes that would bother me, but I learned to embrace my life and live it the way it is.”
On the challenges of being a full-time student and an athlete, she said it was never easy as she failed one module which led her to be part of the spring graduations. “I remember when I had to choose between playing the national games in Malawi which coincided with my exams. I chose my country instead and ended up failing that module, but in the end, I had to work hard to be where I am today,” said the teary-eyed Manana.
She further mentioned that seeing her friends graduating during the Winter Graduations was painful as she wanted to be amongst them as a graduate, but she quickly remembered that they might all be friends, but their achievements and success won’t come at the same time.
Side by side with her at the graduations, was her mother, Ms Dibuseng Mosia who said she is very proud of her daughter, moreso for being the first graduate in the family. She extended her gratitude to Manana’s coach for guiding her, and the Department of Sports and Recreation for assisting her financially, adding that she hopes the support doesn’t end with her but will continue with others too.