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When one of us goes to Harvard, we all go to Harvard! Making Mzansi proud is an incredible student whose winning invention tackling water woes earned him an epic adventure.


Pretoria, South Africa (6 April, 2023) — South Africans are making their mark in some of the most prestigious places. From Pretoria to a Harvard adventure, Boitumelo Nkatlo is changing more than his scenery.

Applying years of chemical engineering knowledge, hard work, and a ‘there’s got to be a way’ mindset, Nkatlo came up with something invaluable to alleviating water scarcity in SA. It would earn him an epic experience, and a spot as a future-builder for a more sustainable South Africa.

Now, you’d be forgiven for wondering if he’s a part-time magician burning the midnight oil. After all, finding a way to turn acidic water into drinkable doses is no everyday invention. However, that’s precisely what he did, and what won him a trip to Harvard Business School to rub elbows with innovators around the world at the Harvard Business School’s Africa Business Conference.

According to Regent Business School, their student’s inventive work addresses the water scarcity issues faced by communities all over South Africa.

“His invention, which is fully recognised and licensed in his name, treats acid mine drainage water and transforms it into safe drinking water, using waste metallic materials.” – Regent Business School.

The trip took place in late March, and upon his return, Nkatlo shared that “this trip could lead to other life-changing opportunities.”

Beyond his trip, his invention could be a slice of a more sustainable South Africa, where clean water is a treasure to communities all over our country, when it should be a given.

“His dedication to finding sustainable and affordable solutions to address the issue of clean water access is inspiring, and we are confident that he will continue to make a significant impact in the future.”— Dr Ahmed Shaikh. 

Source: Supplied
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About the Author

Ashleigh Nefdt is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Ashleigh's favourite stories have always seen the hidden hero (without the cape) come to the rescue. As a journalist, her labour of love is finding those everyday heroes and spotlighting their spark - especially those empowering women, social upliftment movers, sustainability shakers and creatives with hearts of gold. When she's not working on a story, she's dedicated to her canvas or appreciating Mother Nature.

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