Twins often have much in common, and in the case of these twin pairs on the Dean’s Honours Roll, their academic achievements are equally outstanding.
Both Ange-leonnelle Nzangue Fouogang and her twin, Loanne Audrey Nzangue Fobasso, along with twins Russell and Ryan Taengwa, earned a place on the annual Dean’s Honours Roll in the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment (FEBE).
Ange and Loanne: Twin paths in engineering
Ange is a 22-year-old civil engineering student who was recently honoured for her academic excellence. She plans to pursue a PhD in structural engineering. She balances her school and social time by studying continuously during the week and ensuring she has enough rest on weekends.
“For my study method, I make sure that I attend all my lectures, I read my notes everyday, I do all my tutorials and the maximum of exercises, I consult with my lecturers when I am in difficulties and I practise with past papers. I always make sure that I know my theory by heart before doing examples because questions might change but the principle is always the same.”
For her twin sister, Loanne, who is a third year mechanical engineering student, finding a balance between school work and social life is something she does organically.
“I tend to do most of the social things when I’m free from school work and I think that works pretty well for me.”
Loanne’s attraction to knowing how objects or appliances used daily are made is one of the reasons she applied for a BEng in mechanical engineering.
“I have always been studying sciences and I wanted to study a field where scientific and technological knowledge can be applied. It means a lot to me to be on the honours roll. I feel that my hard work pays and that I’m being recognised for my achievement. It also helps me to never give up and continue pushing even when hard times seem to be lasting.”
Studying together, the twins support each other, stay motivated, and serve as sources of inspiration.
Student advice from Loanne and Ange
Choosing UJ as their institution of choice was a ‘no brainer’ as it is internationally recognised.
When offering advice to fellow students, Louanne emphasises the importance of hard work, resilience in the face of difficulties, and active participation in classes. She also encourages seeking clarification from instructors when needed. On the other hand, Ange suggests that prioritising discipline over motivation is key for consistent progress. Additionally, she advises students to seek assistance when they encounter challenges in their academic journey.
Russell and Ryan’s story
Russell Taengwa’s passion for Civil Engineering is driven by the desire to contribute to society through innovative solutions. As a final year student, he finds the field intellectually stimulating and socially relevant, with the potential to address pressing global issues like climate change and urbanization.
Being on the Dean’s Honour Roll signifies the recognition of his hard work.
“It serves as a reminder that persistence, commitment, and a strong work ethic can lead to success. Additionally, being on the honours roll opens opportunities for scholarships, internships, and other academic distinctions, which can further enhance my educational journey and future prospects.”
Russell’s future plans include obtaining a professional license, working in a consulting firm, seeking mentorship, and advancing his education through research and publication. He follows a study method that involves creating a weekly schedule, allocating dedicated study hours, and selecting a conducive study environment, focusing on effective time management, active learning, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle to balance academics and social life.
His brother, Ryan, who is also pursuing Civil Engineering, sees this field as a platform to question, explore, invent, discover, and create. He believes that in a rapidly changing world, engineers need to think creatively, and he’s eager to design solutions that can positively impact people’s lives.
Ryan highly values his recognition on the honour roll, as it reaffirms his dedication to excellence. It motivates him to continue striving for greater achievements.
He found choosing UJ as his university easy, mainly due to its distinction as the first and only African university admitted to a prestigious consortium of 28 research-intensive universities worldwide. Additionally, he was drawn to UJ by the firsthand experiences shared by undergraduates on platforms like YouTube, which made him enthusiastic about the university’s exciting environment.
Studying alongside his twin brother has been a fulfilling journey for Ryan. Initially pursuing different degrees in Actuarial Science and Chemical Engineering at separate universities, their acceptance into UJ for Civil Engineering led them to leave their home country for South Africa.
Balancing academic responsibilities and social life often compels Ryan to allocate more time to his studies. He employs a “traffic light” system to prioritise areas of focus based on time and deadlines. Green signifies sufficient time, amber indicates a narrowing timeframe, and red signifies urgent attention. In addition, Ryan wakes up at 4 am to review the previous day’s work.
Ryan’s advice to students: “Always stay committed toward your studies, successful students always focus on the tasks at hand. Everything has its own time and nothing lasts forever. Rather than regretting it later, it’s better to give your all and look forward to another challenge. Lastly, always be a little kinder than necessary, it helps.”
Russell’s advice to students: “Achieving honour roll status requires dedication, discipline, and effective study habits. By setting clear goals, managing your time wisely, and actively engaging with your coursework, you can pave the way for academic success. Remember that the journey toward the honour roll is not just about the destination but also about the growth and learning that occur along the way.”