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Honouring youth in research and technology

2021-06-16  Paheja Siririka

Honouring youth in research and technology
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Paheja Siririka

The University of Namibia (Unam) recently celebrated youth in research and technology to create platforms, opportunities and support young researchers to ensure a better world for the future.

The event was sponsored in collaboration with the private sector partners Salt Essential Information Technology, Complete Enterprise Solutions and Green Enterprise Solutions and line ministries.

MD of Salt Essential Information Technology Sonja Coetzer said the youth are the catalyst of changes that are happening in the world through science and technology and they need the utmost support as much as possible.

“The truth is, our youth, their curiosity, their drive to bring about change and improvement, and their unwillingness to accept the status quo is the driving force behind change through smart innovation. They are our insulin, penicillin, our bridge, our internet, our future! Our youth is driving the magic happening in the world through science and technology,” expressed Coetzer.

Salt is one of Africa’s select award-winning Microsoft Direct Cloud Solution Providers, supporting customers ranging from small and medium business to enterprises.

Unam PhD candidate Anna Shipepe said research guidance is important and that students should take that very seriously. 

“My research exposure was strengthened when I did my masters at NUST under the guidance of Professor Anicia Peters. She taught me not only to pay attention but to be in charge of my research,” shared Shipepe.

The computer scientist lecturer at Unam with an interest in artificial intelligence and robotics urged fellow researchers to join other research circles who are talking to or who are in line with one’s interest in research.

 Sonja Coetzer said there is a need to acknowledge the work of the youth in the science and technology field, as they need as much exposure as possible.

“It is imperative that we respect and celebrate our youth, create the platforms and opportunities, and support them to ensure a better world for our future. We also need to give them exposure to real world challenges through programmes such as internships,” Coetzer told Youth Corner.

She added: “We should however not throw the wise and greybeards out with the bathwater just yet, as they set the path for the journey our youth embark upon when they cooperate and share their experience and wealth of knowledge in research and innovation.”

She emphasised that the university is moving towards a locally relevant and engaged research based university, where research is integrated into its teaching and learning curriculum, innovation and entrepreneurship pursuits whilst using technology as an enabler. 

Vice Chancellor Kenneth Matengu said more youths are needed in research and technology to secure the success and reap the benefits of the fourth industrial revolution that is taking place right now. The event will become an annual information sharing session of the university and more partners are invited to join the initiative. -

2021-06-16  Paheja Siririka

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