Dream of Studying Cosmology Drives Scholarship WinnerGeneral

Mr Dhaneshwar Dalian Sunder with UKZN Vice-Chancellor Dr Albert van Jaarsveld.Mr Dhaneshwar Dalian Sunder with UKZN Vice-Chancellor Dr Albert van Jaarsveld.

The goal of studying Cosmology has been brought a step closer for young student, Mr Dhaneshwar Dalian Sunder, through the Malegapuru W Makgoba Scholarship he was awarded for being a top-ranked undergraduate.

Sunder’s interest in Mathematics was sparked during his formative years at Parsee Rustomjee Primary School where his aptitude for the subject resulted in his parents transferring him to Star College. ‘It was at Star College that my ability in Maths developed further,’ he said.

Sunder took part in a variety of Maths competitions and Olympiads before matriculating from Star College with a 91% aggregate!

Professor Poobhalan Pillay, an Emeritus Professor in the School of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science at UKZN said: ‘Dalian Sunder is an exceptional student who has great potential. I knew him when he was at Star College as he used to attend my Maths classes for bright learners. He was placed amongst the top 10 in Mathematics Olympiads more than once and was one of six students who represented South Africa at the International Mathematics Olympiad, winning a bronze medal.’

Sunder, who excelled in his first year of studies for his Bachelor of Science degree, receiving Dean’s Commendation awards for both semesters, thanked the University for awarding him a scholarship that will allow him to pursue his dreams of studying Cosmology.

Senior Lecturer in the Astrophysics and Cosmology Research Unit, Dr Matt Hilton said: ‘Dalian has made a great start to his studies at UKZN. From teaching him in second year astronomy, I have seen first-hand that he is both talented and hard working. I'm very happy he has won this award, and wish him all the best in his future studies.’

Sunder acknowledged God for blessing him with the ability to excel in Mathematics. ‘I am also fortunate my parents gave me the opportunity to pursue a research area I am passionate about,’ he said.

Dalian had this advice for other students: ‘Live as if you always have something to prove. Apply this to your studies, as it’s a recipe for greatness. I believe we should always be learning, so let knowledge be your armour in this battle we call life.’    

Leena Rajpal