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DJ Fresh’s music and mike skills have been moved to an earlier slot on Gauteng’s number one radio station, but he’s still serving up the most relevant topics and the hottest tunes. But DJ Fresh was nearly lost to the world of broadcasting – after school he studied two years of law before jumping ship to journalism. DJ Fresh has thirteen house albums under his belt. Fresh has shared the DJ booth with a number of internationals, including “Little Louie” Vega, Frankie Knuckles, Armand Van Helden and Dominic Spreadlove, and played in Southport in 2000 and at the legendary Pacha inIbiza in 2001.
Earlier in 2002, DJ Fresh was among a team of South African DJs who performed at the Masters at Work party at the Miami Winter Music Conference. Not only is DJ Fresh an awesome and respected DJ, he’s also a father and a loving husband and an entrepreneur. Apart from launching his company Big Dawg Productions, he’s established the DJ Fresh Annual Scholarship programme, which awards tertiary scholarships to deserving students who cannot afford it.
In 2000 DJ Fresh invited YFM to adopt 100 matriculants from Gauteng’s Star Schools who every Saturday attended extra classes until exams were over. He also arranged career talks for the learners with people from different sectors. In 2001 another scholarship programme was established – The DJ Fresh Annual Scholarship is an extension of the already existing scholarship, but this time in partnership with Rosebank College, which awarded 5 scholarships, Monash University (10 scholarships) and Boston Media House (5 scholarships). During the same year 17 scholarships were awarded to deserving learners who had excelled in matric but could not afford to pay for further studies.
The aim of the DJ Fresh Annual Scholarship initiative is to give matriculants from the so-called “formerly disadvantaged communities” an opportunity to explore all facets of life, while at the same time helping break the stereotype that lawyers and doctors are the epitome of success. Plans are underway to turn the scholarship into a full and permanent education fund and eventually offer post-graduate scholarships. Other tertiary institutions were roped aboard to finance media studies for learners.
With everything that Thato Sikwane has done both as a radio presenter and young entrepreneur, he is after all “so far, not doing badly”. One can only hope that he is still to change more people.