Posted on October 31, 2023

The academic achievements of staff play a pivotal role in shaping the quality and reputation of an academic institution. A dedicated and accomplished staff contributes not only to the overall educational experience but also fosters an environment of excellence and innovation. These achievements can be measured through various metrics, such as degrees earned, research output, publications, and their contributions to the academic community.

Furthermore, the research output of staff members is a critical component of academic achievements. Research publications, presentations at conferences, and involvement in cutting-edge projects all serve to enrich the academic landscape. These contributions not only enhance the staff's own knowledge and skills but also elevate the institution's reputation by making valuable contributions to their respective fields of expertise. The following staff members with their wealth of knowledge and expertise made our department proud this year:

Prof Focke

  • Presented four lectures at the University of A Coruna in Spain (24 July - 1 August 2023)
  • Awarded grants and research funds in 2023: 

- Two-year MEng project funded by African Applied Chemical: Development of slow-release pheromone fibers for fruit fly control. Value R 420 k

-Two-year MEng project funded by Sappi via PAMSA: Cellulose nanofibre-based composites. Value R 440 k (Bursaries R 320 k + running R 120 k)

Prof Daramola

  • Elected:

             -Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers (UK) (FIChemE)

             -Fellow of the South African Institution of Chemical Engineers (FSAICHE)

  • Listed amongst the 2023 World's Top 2% Scientists recently released by Stanford University.
  • Appointed as a member of the Scientific Committee of the WasteEng 2024 Japan 2024
  • Appointed to serve on the Scientific/Technical Committee of EUBCE 2024 in France 2024
  • Appointed Managing Guest Editor of the Special Issue dedicated to ICESW 2023 in Material Today: Proceedings (Scopus-indexed journal published by Elsevier)
  • Visited Chandigarh University, Chandigarh, India (17-22 September 2023) as a visiting professor on the International Faculty Exchange Program (IFEP) and he presented 5 lectures at the university.
  • Awarded grants and research funds in 2023: 
  • In collaboration with Dr. Sikhwivhilu of Mintek received a WRC grant for the development of a membrane-based process for treating mine-impacted wastewater in collaboration with Mintek
    • In collaboration with Dr. Iwarere, received a BRICS grant for the development of Sodium-ion batteries  (with Prof Amartya Mukhopadhyay of IIT Bombay, India)

Prof Evans Chirwa:

  • Listed amongst the 2023 World's Top 2% Scientists recently released by Stanford University
  • UP Exceptional Achievers Award 2023

The University of Pretoria (UP) celebrated the 2023 Academic Achievers' Awards on Thursday, 19 October 2023. 12 researchers were honoured with the Exceptional Academic Researchers Award, an annual recognition given to seasoned academics who have excelled in undergraduate and postgraduate teaching, research, community engagement, and administration over time. Any academic achieving an A-rating from the National Research Foundation (NRF) in the given year automatically qualifies as an Exceptional Achiever, retaining this status while maintaining an A-rating. Professor Evan Chirwa is amongst the esteemed recipients of this award. Please click here to read the full story on the UP Academic Achiever’s Awards. Please click here for a LinkedIn article.

The accolades of our academic staff serve as inspiring role models for both students and fellow colleagues, motivating them to strive for excellence in their academic pursuits. We hope this fosters a culture of continuous learning and growth. The Department of Chemical Engineering wishes the top achievers the best for the future and looks forward to further developments in the department.  

- Author Emly Mathe

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