“A good head and good heart are always a formidable combination. But when you add to that a literate tongue or pen, then you have something very special.”
Nelson Mandela (1918-2013)
Nelson Mandela cared about education. Born July 18, 1918, he was the first in his family to receive a formal education, and completed his primary studies at a local missionary school. There, a teacher dubbed him Nelson as part of a common practice of giving African students English names (then, he was known by his birth name, Rolihlahla)
He went on to attend the Clarkebury Boarding Institute and Healdtown, a Methodist secondary school, where he excelled in boxing and track as well as academics. In 1939 Mandela entered the elite University of Fort Hare, the only Western-style higher learning institute for South African blacks at the time but was sent home the following year for participating in a boycott against university policies.
However, that didn’t stop him from continuing his studies in Johannesburg where he bagged a bachelor’s degree in law by correspondence, and while he was in confinement Mandela earned a bachelor of law degree from the University of London
Fast forward 59 years later, after retiring from politics in 1999, he remained a devoted champion for peace and social justice in his own nation and around the world until his death in 2013 at the age of 95.