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The number of Durban University of Technology’s academic staff with PhD degrees has increased over the past years.

This was recently announced at a Doctoral Mentorship Programme held at Coastlands Musgrave. The event formed part of the research capacity development session aimed at preparing prospective Doctoral students for their academic journey ahead. The prospective students were also awarded with certificates as part of recognizing them for participation and finishing the mentorship programme.  The gathering is the brainchild of DUT’s Research, Engagement and Innovation office in collaboration with the Directorate for Research and Postgraduate Support at DUT.

During the informative meeting, DUT International Education and Partnership Director, Dr Lavern Samuels congratulated the award recipients saying it was a milestone to the life of any academic to get to doctoral level.

“We want to shape our university differently and by you embarking on this journey you are embracing this philosophy, so, well done,” said Dr Samuels.

He further stated that his office was there to develop the university and its staff in various ways, saying the research office and other departments within DUT were readily available to assist postgraduate students where they can.

“We, at DUT have been building this international reputation for many years and we have funding mobility programme that you can engage with. In the last three years we have sent many students for the Fulbright scholarship program and I was very uplifted when I met an academic that I sent three and half years to the University of Bologna and has returned with the PhD from that university which is regarded as the oldest in Europe with rich research tradition,” said Dr Samuels.

Hospitality and Tourism lecturer Nozipho Sibiya said the reason she joined the program was because she needed upskilling on latest research techniques in both theory and available research software technology so that she does not get frustrated through the whole process of her studies.

“As a lecturer it is imperative that I remain at the cutting edge of knowledge and research skills not only in my area of specialization (Tourism) but also broadly in related fields,” added Sibiya.

Sibiya currently holds different qualification from different institutions, MA in Recreation and Tourism (MRT) (Research: Community Based Tourism) from the University of Zululand, Bachelor of Education from University of South Africa and B. Paed.  (Majors: Geography and Education) from the University of Zululand.

“The university (DUT) offers staff great support through the doctoral mentorship program by bringing seasoned Professors who have vast experience and cutting edge research knowledge and technical skills to mentor us. This provides us with rich knowledge and skills about research before we even embark fully on our journey, hence laying a good foundation for our PhD studies,” said Sibiya.

The ceremony was also attended by the Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment (EBE) Professor Paul Musonge and the Director for Student Counselling and Health Naseem Haniff.

PICTURED: Durban University of Technology Academics and prospective doctoral students during the Doctoral Mentorship Programme  awarding ceremony held at Coastlands Musgrave. Prospective students were recognised for completing the programme. 


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