Induction into AAS early career development initiative

28 September 2016

Dr Christina Thobakgale-Tshabalala, who is a Research Associate at CAPRISA, was among the first cohort of 15 young scientists selected by the African Academy of Sciences for a programme to recognise, mentor and help early career professionals develop into world class research leaders. The 15, who are PhD holders and below the age of 40, were selected from the five regions of Africa to be AAS Affiliates for a five-year period running from 2016 to 2020. They were inducted at the AAS 10th General Assembly taking place in Kasane, Botswana. 

AAS will work with their institutions to offer them training in areas that include proposal writing and manuscript preparation to help them win more grants and improve their publication records, respectively. Other training will be offered in ethical research conduct and intellectual property to ensure they are equipped with the knowledge need to develop their careers. Berhanu Abegaz, the AAS Executive Director said: “Unless we provide opportunities to attract, train and retain our young scientists, especially those who are showing promise in their different fields, through a rewarding career path we will continue to lose them.” Africa loses 20,000 thousands of professionals every year to developed countries some of whom are scientists who are frustrated by the lack of infrastructure and mentors.

AAS Affiliates will be mentored by experts in their fields from across the globe, some of whom are senior scientists drawn from AAS Fellows. Mentorship is a conduit for young professionals to gain the knowledge they need to be successful in their careers.