Following his recent nomination to the South African Young Academies of Science (SAYAS), Dr. Munyaradzi Christopher Marufu, has hailed this appointment as an opportunity to not only advance his academic skills, but to also convert technical outputs to tangible benefits for the communities he works with. He was appointed a Senior Lecturer in Veterinary Parasitology in the Faculty of Veterinary Science in July 2019. Chris is also the research leader in the field of Veterinary Helminthology, and a champion for Livestock Welfare and Community Engagement in the Department of Veterinary Tropical Diseases.
Chris feels he can make an impact in the Department of Veterinary Tropical Diseases as this department has always conducted research that engages and supports the development of sustainable solutions to livestock health problems of farming communities. He is also reassured by the Head of Department, Prof. Tshepo Matjila’s pledge to increase the visibility of the Department in research activities in surrounding communities. “It is important that the work that we do benefits society. So as DVTD we are proud of Chris’ appointment to the prestigious Academies of Science, as an acknowledgement of his academic prowess and scientific contribution to society, so early in his academic career,” says Prof Matjila.
Dr. Marufu shares his views with Linda Poggenpoel about SAYAS and the contribution of science to society.
What does the SAYAS nomination mean to you?
I am both humbled and delighted to be nominated to the SAYAS amongst the country’s top early career academics and being given an opportunity to make meaningful contributions to the society. This is an important opportunity for me to use my voice to address societal challenges backed by sound scientific principles. It is also an opportunity to mentor young and budding scientists as well as advocate for science among learners in different communities that I engage with.
Any messages for young scientists who want to become SAYAS members?
Keeping working hard, there is no substitute for hard work, people will notice and recognise your contributions. Be willing to be mentored and keep a strong hold on a good mentor. Collaborations are a gateway to long lasting and fruitful growth, as the saying goes: to travel faster go alone, but to travel further go with others. The academy is about interacting with like-minded scientists who are also finding ways to contribute to society, be willing to team up and work in a multidisciplinary setting as this will help to shape your scientific voice.