Mellon mentors help out

06 June 2011

Mellon mentorsMarvellous mentors: Deputy vice-chancellor Prof Danie Visser (third from right) welcomed the Mellon mentors (from left) Prof Andy Dawes, Prof Lynn Shaw, Prof George Branch (honorary mentor, 2008-2010), Prof Harold Kincaid, Prof Ojelanki Ngwenyama and Prof Carole Rakodi.

Running since 2006, the Visiting and Retired Scholars Mentorship Project is a prized initiative in the UCT arsenal to develop and nurture the next generation of scholars.

Funded by the Andrew W Mellon Foundation, it taps into a rich vein of international research experience by recruiting retired UCT scholars living in South Africa and a selection of distinguished scholars living overseas to mentor up-and-coming young researchers at UCT. (There are some 40 such researchers on the project's books right now.)

Recently, the Research Office hosted its annual project get-together for mentors and protégés. By chance, there are no fewer than four visiting mentors at UCT at the moment - a rare event, according to the Research Office's Wilna Venter - plus three retired scholars.

The four visiting mentors are Professor Harold Kincaid of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, US; Professor Ojelanki Ngwenyama of Ryerson University, Canada; Professor Carole Rakodi of the University of Birmingham, UK; and Professor Lynn Shaw of the University of Western Ontario, Canada. Professor Andy Dawes, Professor Parkington and Dr Anna Strebel are the Cape Town-based scholars.

The visiting mentors stay at UCT for two stints of at least two months each over any given year.

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