Coach Michael started experimenting with educational robotics when he returned to South Africa in 2000
after a two year stint in the USA where he worked for a softare company.
From 2004, initially on a part-time basis and then later on a full time basis he taught SA youth
about robotics and electronics. A South African robotics team that he coached
was placed second in the world at the World Robotics Olympiad (WRO) 2012 against teams from around
While at University of Johannesburg [2014-2018] Coach Michael started the AfrikaBOT competition,
which was designed to encourage youth to get involved in pre-engineering activities, and build
their own robot in order to enter the competition.
After funding for Coach Michael's youth education programme was withdrawn by University of
Johannesburg he joined Paramount Group, a leading privately-owned enginering company in
South Africa where he's in charge of prototyping equipment that includes CNC and laser and 3D
In addition, he is spearheading a new initiative in the form of the Paramount Robotics Club that
aims to inspire South African youth to consider maths and science-related careers like
engineering and IT.
In his spare time, which is how he relaxes, Coach Michael tinkers with and repairs 1970s HiFi
equipment. Any profit from these activities gets re-invested into buying parts for the youth programmes,
so if you have some old broken HiFi equipment from the 1970s or early 1980s that you are no longer inclined
to store then send a WhatsApp message and some pictures to 082 962 2772.
While Coach Michael does not have time to conduct repairs to your equipment, he may make an offer
to purchase your equipment so he can repair it. If it turns out the equipment can be repaired
[because parts can still be sourced] he always gives the previous owner "first right of refusal" to buy it back.
First right of refusal means the equipment is offered at the price he paid for the item plus what it cost
to repair. In practical terms what this means is if a broken amplifier was bought for R250.00 and R600.00 in time
and parts was invested getting it all working again, the previous owner can buy it back for R850.00 in full working
condition with a one year guarantee on the repair work. Previous owners are under no obligation to buy equipment back.
Where equipment can't be repaired, which is only because parts and substitute parts simply can't be had, then the donated
equipment is stripped and used by the students to make their own projects and learn more about electronics.