The College of Law and Management Studies (CLMS) hosted a lunch to honour staff members who graduated with PhDs, to recognise Distinguished Teachers Award recipients Dr Msizi Mkhize and Professor Fayth Ruffin, and to celebrate the milestone of the College graduating 71 doctoral candidates – the largest number in a single year in its history!
Speaking on the research achievements, Acting College Dean of Research, Professor Harold Ngalawa said that it was encouraging to see the various research initiatives the College had put in place were now yielding fruit.
‘In our quest to achieve our goal of graduating an increasing number of PhD graduates every year, we put in place several interventions including running workshops on thesis and proposal writing, statistics, and research methods as well as writing retreats,’ said Ngalawa.
‘We also provided PhD candidates with research grants which have gone a long way towards assisting those who would have otherwise struggled to do their research. We also introduced refresher workshops for the College’s higher degrees officers, resulting in these officers improving their competency and also possessing the highest professional standards. This has helped streamline the process from application for admission in our PhD programmes all the way to the examination of PhD theses and the graduation of doctoral candidates,’ he said.
Apart from acknowledging the role higher degrees administration staff played in this achievement, special mention was made about the support graduates received throughout their academic journeys from PhD supervisors.
Distinguished Teachers Award recipients Ruffin and Mkhize, who shared insights on innovative teaching and learning techniques, were applauded for the outstanding qualities that earned them the prestigious award.
In his address, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Head of the College, Professor Brian McArthur congratulated the staff on their achievements.
‘This year we had 12 staff graduating with their PhDs and many of them with their masters which means they’re also on their way towards acquiring doctoral degrees. My advice to you is that you celebrate it for as long as you can but don’t neglect to focus on publishing as that is your next step.’
Words: Thandiwe Jumo
Photographs: Hazel Langa