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in loco fellows blog series #5: Learning, fun, out-of-the-comfort-zone experiences

Adventure and Passion; the two words that come to mind when Mamanti Phothane Makara is mentioned (by the way that is my name). They tell me I am “generally” friendly and I have a charismatic smile and I believe them 🙂

I am very passionate about architectural design and interior life in general, but when I need to relax I like to tour and bike; I just love the feeling of the pumping adrenaline. In the biking language I am a “biker chick” well, let me not go much into the details of what that means, but for sure I am a biker.

On the side of my professional passion; Architecture, I am a proud member of the in loco program. I am learning a lot here and becoming better each day. Through the business trainings in the program, I am becoming a better entrepreneurial thinker; which is helping me in my existing businesses.

As I mentioned, I am learning a lot! I am grateful that I had the opportunity to be part of the First Aid Trainees who are supposed to always be ready on site in case of an emergency. It was not only fun; it was eye opening to the kind of person I am when it comes to dealing with emergencies and the importance of avoiding them.

Another learning opportunity I got was training by Afrisam, a cement manufacturer. We learned how to mix mortar and how to lay bricks. When we were told we are going to lay the bricks ourselves I must admit I was a little scared but the training made me realise that it is not so hard. The certificates we received after the training was the cherry on top; it made me feel like a professional in bricklaying.

Who would have thought that one day I, an Interior Architect, would be given a chance to be dealing with the procurement of such a prominent project but yes, in loco made me step out of my comfort zone completely. I am thinking outside of the box now as far as my career in the built environment is concerned. I am just a week into the role of a buyer for the project and I am looking forward to the next few weeks in this role.

Building confidence came in the package for me as well because one of the unexpected days I had to present to the representatives of World Bank and since that day forward the sky is limitless. I could pinch myself a thousand times; like, me presenting to such high profile people, wow! Not knowing that I will later discover that it was not going to be the last. The great connections we are making at in loco are amazing.

We are also expecting international students from the built environment to visit us in Lesotho and it is really exciting and we fellows are looking forward to meeting them. I am already thinking of places to take them if we get the chance. They will definitely bike with me at least once.

On top of all that, the most wonderful thing is to give back to the community. Having been given the chance to improve people’s lives and value to their wellbeing. Working closely with the orphanage only opened my eyes to the other side of the world and has helped me to value every opportunity that comes my way, and it really helped me to appreciate life as it is.

That is how much experience in the fellowship has been so far; full of learning, fun, out-of-the-comfort-zone experiences and a lot of self-discovery.

 

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