From Engodini to the Spotlight: Nicholas Banda’s journey in the modeling industry

From Engodini to the Spotlight: Nicholas Banda’s journey in the modeling industry

Mister Mpumalanga 2nd runner-up, Nicholas Banda, is a 21-year-old model who has made a significant mark in the modeling industry. Hailing from Engodini, his ascent to the podium reflects his dedication, charm, and the vibrant spirit of his hometown.

In an exclusive interview, Nicholas Banda (NB) discusses his modeling career, charity and community work, tourism, and what motivates his day-to-day activities. Besides modeling, he is also a Bachelor of Arts student at the University of Mpumalanga. Our media reporter, Tapiwanashe Rubaya (TR), had the opportunity to be guided by Nicholas Banda through South Africa’s tourism landmarks.

TR: Nicholas, how would you describe yourself to someone who does not know you?

NB: I would say I am a very colorful and vibrant person who is always positive and up for a challenge, always looking for new experiences and opportunities.

TR: When did you begin your journey in the modeling industry?

NB: My modeling journey began in 2023.

TR: You had a great journey at Mister Mpumalanga 2024. Can you share some of your favorite highlights?

NB: One highlight was visiting one of my previous high schools to donate toiletries and give motivational speeches to the young students. It was a great and different experience. Another memorable moment was the day of the coronation. I remember feeling a little nervous, but once I got on stage, all the nerves and negative thoughts vanished, and it felt like this is what I was destined for.

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TR: Now you are currently moving on from chasing one title to eyeing an international title…

NB: Yes, Mister Tourism Globe is an international pageant for tourism. By promoting cultural values, diversity, and heritage as the primary pillars for sustainable tourism development, the pageant seeks to advance tourist education and awareness.

TR: What are some misconceptions about the modeling industry, and what should be done to educate people about it?

NB: The two most prevalent misconceptions are:

  • Glamorous Lifestyle Only: People assume that modeling is all about glitz and glamour. In reality, it involves hard work, long hours, and dedication.
  • Strict Beauty Standards: While appearance matters, the industry values diversity. Models come in various shapes, sizes, and backgrounds.

TR: If you could raise a campaign about a global issue, what would it be about?

NB: I would promote sustainable tourism.

  • Preserving Natural Beauty: Encourage visitors to explore sites responsibly, reducing their impact on fragile ecosystems.
  • Supporting Local Communities: Promote real experiences that boost local economies and empower communities.
  • Reducing Waste: Encourage eco-friendly practices in hotels, restaurants, and transportation.
  • Cultural Preservation: Emphasize the necessity of honouring local customs, traditions, and legacy.

TR: What motivates your day-to-day life?

NB: My dreams and goals drive me because I dream beyond my limitations. I want to be a testimony to every kid who has no hope or belief in their dreams. Even if you come from one of the poorest backgrounds, as long as you believe and are determined to achieve something, it is possible.

TR: Given a moment to be a tour guide in Mpumalanga, which tourism sites would you guide us to?

NB: Kruger National Park: Take a wildlife safari through this iconic park, where you can see the Big Five and other exotic creatures. Whether you choose a self-drive or a guided tour, it is an unforgettable experience! Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve: Take in the stunning views of the world’s third-largest canyon. Do not miss the Three Rondavels perspective or Bourke’s Luck Potholes.

TR: Lastly, what words do you have for those who support you?

NB: I am deeply grateful to everyone who has supported me! Your encouragement fuels my digital existence, while your curiosity motivates me to learn and evolve. Thank you for joining us on this voyage, whether you are a fellow traveller, an artist, or someone looking for answers. Let us continue to explore, create, and connect!

Tapiwa Rubaya

Tapiwa Rubaya is the current affairs, fashion and sports reporter at My Afrika Magazine.

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