Mastercard Foundation Scholars Conference at UP highlights the importance of well-executed research

Posted on August 10, 2023

“Research is not for a select few, it is there to expand our knowledge, intellectual growth, [and] teach specialised skills and expertise for everyone who participates in it.”

These were the words of Dr Grace Ramafi, Programme Manager at the University of Pretoria (UP) for the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program, at a scholars conference recently hosted at Future Africa, UP's pan-African platform for collaborative research.

The conference attracted scholars from South Africa and other African countries and presented them with an opportunity to learn more about the significance of well-executed research and its impact on solving and understanding societal challenges. They also had an opportunity to engage and exchange insights and ideas with guest speakers including Nine80 Digital Media Managing Director Bruce Dube, inspirational speaker and author of The Wholeness Revolution Cheryl Benadie, and UP Associate Professor Moloko Cholo.

“As the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program, our role is to recruit, prepare, educate, and transition quality and well-rounded graduates who will, at the end of their studies at UP, transition to become ethical and transformative leaders in any space they find themselves in,” Dr Ramafi said. “UP’s vision and goals are very much aligned with that of the Mastercard Foundation, and therefore it supports what we are doing, and together we will continue to make sure that students at UP receive the best education and development support needed to address challenges that the continent and the world face.”

Associate Professor Cholo delivered a presentation that sought to highlight the significance of research, and challenged researchers to refrain from proposing a methodology in their thesis and later straying from it. She said if researchers want to do good research that fulfils its objectives they should not abandon their methodology simply because adding new information would create challenges for them.

“Good research is honest research. That is why it is important to choose your models well when you do an investigation, so that your objectives lead you towards what you want to achieve," she said.

- Author James Mahlokwane

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