In a league of her own

Nakasole won’t allow her age to get in the way of her dreams.

08 October 2019 | Youth

Nakasole is a 15-year-old learner from Onawa Secondary School in the Omusati Region. She is currently in grade 10 and scooped a gold medal at the 2019 national skills competition in early April.

She resides in the Okathitu Kambanda settlement in Omusati with her parents Rachel and Tauno Nakasole, and her two younger brothers and two older sisters.

“I love my family because they are and have always been my backbone in everything I do and they have constantly supported me. I am forever grateful for them.

“My hospitality teacher Selma Mokaxwa entered me and a few of my classmates in the national skills competition mostly for vocational training centre (VTC) students and it was a platform we wanted to use to enhance our knowledge.

“I never expected to win at all, since I was under-experienced and this opportunity seemed way out of my league.

Hearing my name being announced as a gold medallist was unbelievable. I then headed to Russia and that experience, in itself, will be something I will always remember,” Nakasole said.

The Kazan experience

“Going to Russia was a beyond amazing experience. At such a young age I was granted a once in a life time opportunity to travel the world and in an airplane for that matter.

“At World Skills Kazan I participated in the junior category for restaurant service, and because of my age, I got to meet a lot of young people from all corners of the world, to learn new things and eat all kinds of different cuisine. It was another world,” Nakasole added.

Before travelling to Russia, she had to undergo intensive training and was assisted by her ‘expert’ Victor Indombo and her teacher, Mokaxwa, at various places, including the Avani hotel, which contributed a lot to her training, as well as Checkers in Windhoek.

“In Russia I competed with other teenagers my age and it was relatively tough, but I managed to come fourth. The hospitality in Russia was one in a million and I enjoyed spending time with my team. We made great memories.”

She learnt how international competitions are run and enhanced her knowledge, in terms of perfecting her skills.

She also learnt that age means absolutely nothing when you know what you want to achieve in life.

True inspiration

Inspiration is not hard to find when you live with yours one under one roof. Nakasole says she is inspired by a lot of people, but the people that stand out for her are her parents.

“They inspire me to always put my best foot forward and to never allow anyone to intimidate me. They also inspire me to always follow my dreams. They are my greatest gift and I owe them tremendously,” she said.

She also said that without her best friend, Martha Johannes, she wouldn’t have made it so far.

The next step

Because she is now 15 and will be 16 during the 2021 World Skills competition in Shanghai, Nakasole will have another chance to take part, this time in the senior category.

“I plan to train excessively in preparation for World Skills Shanghai in 2021. This time, hopefully, I will be able to win the gold medal,” she says.

She hopes to one day be cardiothoracic surgeon and to own the biggest hotel in Namibia. Nakasole believes that without tourism the country cannot thrive, as there is a lot of potential in the sector, and she wants to make sure that the world sees this.

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