Ntandoyenkosi Kunene, a Wits education honours graduand, is a top 12 finalist in Miss SA and will be competing on Saturday at Carnival City for the title

Wits graduand, Ntandoyenkosi Kunene, 23, has made it to the top 12 finalists in the Miss South Africa competition.

Kunene entered Miss SA last August while doing her honours degree in education at Wits.  She is no stranger to beauty pageants. While doing her undergraduate studies she was crowned Miss Mpumalanga 2013, but she says her goal was always to enter Miss South Africa.

On the relevance of beauty pageants and specifically Miss SA in 2016, Kunene says she sees it as any other dream and career. She compares it to people whose dream it is to be a soccer player and considers beauty pageants to be the same.

She says there is a misconception about Miss SA: “It is more than just being pretty; it is not about you, it is about the inspiration you bring to women, children and the youth.”

In 2014 Kunene and some of her friends started visiting Intombi Shelter for girls in Berea, as a hobby “just to have those girl chats. To be a sister. To be a friend.”

She describes her journey as being tough but she also feels that she has already achieved a lot to be in the top 12 for Miss SA because of the large number of women who entered the competition. She says that the title of Miss SA will be a “springboard” for her to accomplish her own personal goals and touch people’s lives. Her passion is education and teaching, if she is crowned she says that that will remain her main focus.

“I enjoy seeing other people do well.”