Thursday 13 June marked another edition of our popular guest speaking BootCamp.

Engage & Connect is where like-minded learners and business people gather under the same roof and inspire each other. Past speakers Jean de Villiers, Greg Bertish, YoungstaCPT, as well as representatives from SPAR, Protea Hotels, Deloitte, WeThinkCode_, Cape Grace, Wetu, Old Mutual Finance, GreenCape, and the Two Oceans Aquarium.

Opening up to a classroom of teenagers is scarier than it sounds — sincere thanks to this year’s speakers for daring to do something different!

Find out what learners said about
our amazing speakers!


Jody Burch, Business Owner & Ex Rugby Player

Jody Burch kicked off Engage & Connect 2019 by sharing his moving journey from professional rugby player to small business owner.

Drawing on his experience of life life as a sportsman, he cautioned that fame and wealth aren’t everything!

Craig Hartley, HR Director

“Craig loves working with people. He taught us that you should never give up on what you love or want.”
Asanele, Grade 10

“Hospitality and tourism are some of the fastest growing careers.”
Okuhle, Grade 9

“Obstacles are opportunities dressed in overalls.”
Lilitha, Grade 8

Gavin Arends, Founder of YOH Radio

“Don’t wait for people to come to you … get to them!”
Zola, Grade 11

“What you end up doing doesn’t always have to follow a set and structured path.” Zeneca, Grade 11

“Use your career to give back to your community.”
Joshua, Grade 11

David Burstein, Electrical Engineer & Entrepreneur

Unathi, Grade 10

“Do what you are passionate about.”
Zolani, Grade 9

“Work becomes pleasant when you like what you are doing.”
Thobela, Grade 11

“Be committed to what you want to become!”
Taemen, Grade 8

Jade & Zanele, Architects

“They gave me a clear image of my future career.”
Lebohang, Grade 9

“Being an architect means being creative and a problem solver.”
Zanebe, Grade 11

“Jade taught me a lot about architecture and what the job is like.”
Samantha, Grade 10

“Teamwork is a fundamental part of architecture.”
Asekho, Grade 10

Clint Crowster, Owner and CEO of askOsca

“He was very empowering and told us to not just be fired-up, we need to be SUPER FIRED-UP — really inspiring.”
Mbali, Grade 11

“I felt like I could relate to him because our backgrounds are similar. He was very energetic and motivating.”
Jamie-Lee, Grade 12

“Which challenge would I like to solve one day?”
Rizia, Grade 11

Lee Burrows, Business Analyst

“You have to be determined to achieve your goals.”
Asenele, Grade 10

“Coding is the future.”
Azile, Grade 8

“You don’t need a formal education to work in I.T.”
Chelsea, Grade 9

“Listening and communication are of utmost importance.”
Chloe, Grade 11

Keanan Woolf, Geology Student

“He explained everything clearly and was energetic and enthusiastic about what he did.”
Aqeelah, Grade 9

“Geology is a scarce skill and is in high demand in the workforce.”
Adrian, Grade 12

“Minerals are found in all the everyday essentials that we use.”
Rafeeqah, Grade 12

“Geologists are adventurers.”
Chelsea, Grade 9

Bulelani Njobe, Entrepreneur

“He is from the same community as me, so I can relate to his difficulties. If he could start a business, then so can I.”
Okuhle, Grade 9

“Entrepreneurship is problem solving.” Claudeth, Grade 10

“Don’t live your life around people who don’t add value to your life.”
Okuhle, Grade 9

“Fly with eagles. Don’t live your life with chickens.”
Thumeka, Grade 9

“Entrepreneurship allows you to be innovative and creative.”
Liam, Grade 

Warren Fisher, Audio Engineer

“He inspired me to want to be an Audio Engineer.”
Jeanary, Grade 8

“Mr. Warren has so much love for music!”
Inamandla, Grade 9

“You can do whatever career path you love as long as it makes you happy.”
Leigh-arren, Grade 8

“You have to work your way up. It takes time!”
Unathi, Grade 11

“Warren talked about a career I can see myself involved with in the future. And it’s interesting!”
Siyamthanda, Grade 11

Gabrielle van der Watt, Photographer & Entrepreneur

“Ms. Gabrielle inspired me to follow my heart. I related to her story.”
Anastasia, Grade 11

“Never forget how wildly capable you are.”
Avuyile, Grade 12

“Involvement leads to self-discovery.”
Zola, Grade 11

“Ms. Gabrielle empowered me and motivated me to not let anything come in my path that might disturb me.”
Chissola, Grade 11

Busiswa Blutshaba, PR & Marketing Entrepreneur

“She motivated me to do my best and said that it doesn’t matter if you fail — what matters is how you get back up. When you have a goal, you should believe in yourself and you will achieve it.”

Rafeeqah, Grade 12

“Miss Blu believes in everything she does. Positive vibes!”

Sanele, Grade 10

“Look beyond the struggles or complexities you face in your community.”

Lisakhanya, Grade 10

Christel House Graduates

“My favourite speaker was Lauren Daniels, one of the Christel House
graduates. She has had an exceptional journey and has broken down every
obstacle in her way. She taught me that succumbing to failure is out of the
question. I was inspired by her story because no mattter how she failed, she
lost no hope and did not lose sight of her end goal, her ambitions, and her
Asekho, Grade 10

“Mikhail Khabwe said something inspiring … “it’s not about what you know but it’s about who you know” that connects you in the world of university.”
Nandi, Grade 9

“Mujahid told us that it’s never easy. Always grab opportunities with both hands and never ever take things lightly.”
Asekho, Grade 10

Abigail Kwan, Animator & Zumba Instructor

“It was fun dancing and doing Zumba for the first time.”
Shaneekah, Grade 12

“I love 3D movies and I loved hearing how they are made and how long it
takes to make them!”
Entle, Grade 8

“There’s more to animation than just sketching pictures and adding
Nabeel, Grade 12

Elizabeth, Beautician

“In a salon you need to be confident.”
Onela, Grade 9

“Beauticians get to deal with people from all over the world.”
Nandi, Grade 9

“To rectify your mistakes, you first have to learn to accept them and
learn from them.”
Lilitha, Grade 8

“It’s important to have good customer service.”
Yamkelani, Grade 10

Craig Christians, Civil Engineer & Entrepreneur

“Mr. Craig inspires me because he never gave up. He did side jobs to support himself while aiming for bigger things in life.”
Amien, Grade 10

“He inspired me to pursue my passion and dream, to follow my vision no matter what people say!!”
Rameez, Grade 10

“Where you are today doesn’t determine where you’re gonna be in the future.”
Samantha, Grade 10

“No matter what anyone else tells you, just believe you can do it.”
Jerome, Grade 9

Chad Blows, Chef

“Chad had an inspiring way of telling his story.”
Khanya, Grade 8

“Chad inspired me because he started with nothing and he never thought he would become a chef.”
Taemen, Grade 8

“If you are passionate about what you are doing, you will do whatever it takes to get to the top.”
Asemahle, Grade 11

“People eat with their eyes, so as a chef you have to be artistic and creative.”
Tamia, Grade 8

Dy Moonsammy, Executive Manager

“She is very motivational. Never stop dreaming until you get it. Let nobody look down on you. When you’re passionate about something you should go for it. Your background doesn’t determine your future. That’s what she said and it motivated me.”
Zanebe, Grade 11

“Learning never stops, and lifelong learning is the key to success.”
Jessie, Grade 12

“The airline industry is broad and offers a variety of jobs.”
Jessie, Grade 12

Tholakele Antamu, Empowerment Practitioner

A scene from Engage & Connect 2019

“Tholakele Antamu was my favourite and most inspiring speaker who taught me everything about life. She taught me that no matter what or who comes in my way, I gotta be powerful and continue to shine because that’s who I am.”
Aneeqa, Grade 11

“I’m speechless … she was just amazing.”
Sesethu, Grade 8

“Never apologise for who you are and always be yourself.”
Zanebe, Grade 11

“You are the power, and the power is in you.”
Shona, Grade 12


After a day of inspiring career advice and personal stories, Jermaine “Dizzy” Johnson closed Engage & Connect 2019 by relating how he overcome poor eyesight and a cornea transplant by composing music and stories during high school.

Challenging learners to persevere in spite of the challenges they face, he got the party started by conducting our prizegiving ceremony and performing a few tracks for his young fans.