NUST welcomes new Pro-Vice-Chancellor

 THE National University of Science and Technology is proud to announce the appointment of  Dr Gatsha Mazithulela as the Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Innovation and Business Development. The new PVC started work on Monday (6 August 2018), and he was unveiled during the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Eng. Mqhele Dlodlo’s meeting with all staff members under the VC’s department on the same day. Dr Mazithulela indicated that his area of focus is to create collaborations that will further develop the university.   “My portfolio is quite large, a part of it being networking and putting innovative and collaborative business arrangements together. So I think the more we spread out and sit in different spaces of influence, the better business intelligence we can get for NUST about critical issues and risks here in Zimbabwe and around the world,” said Dr Mazithulela.

“The premier institute of higher learning in Bulawayo and even in the country, if I may position it that way, is NUST. It’s a natural place for me to then make my professional contributions,” he added.

Dr Mazithulela is one of the NUST  pioneer students who graduated with a Bachelor of Science Honours Degree in Biology and Biochemistry in 1994 and received a Rockefeller Foundation doctoral scholarship to study Genetic Engineering at the John Innes Centre in the United Kingdom. He holds a PhD in Genetic Engineering and Molecular Virology from the John Innes Centre (UK) and an MBA specialising in the valuation of new technologies using Real Options Financial Mathematics. As a NUST  alumnus, he has built an outstanding reputation as a scientist which began when he became the first NUST graduate to obtain a PhD in 1998 after accepting a challenge from the institution’s founding Vice-Chancellor Prof  Phineas Makhurane.

Listed among his achievements are the Fogarty Aids International Training and Research Scholarship at John Hopkins University in the United States (2004); Rockefeller Foundation Pre-doctoral fellowship (1995 to 1998); postdoctoral research fellowship at the University of Nottingham; visiting scientist at DuPont Inc and was awarded support from the UK/South Africa Science and Technology Research Fund in 1997. His interests also extend to current affairs and military strategy. The renowned scientist has also served as a board member for the Cape Biotechnology Trust, Anvir Biopharmaceticals (Pty) Ltd and chairperson of Elevation Biotechnology (Pty) Ltd. He also served as National Research Foundation of South Africa vice-president, Nuclear Technology Products (Pty) Limited, South Africa, South African Nuclear Energy Corporation corporate development consultant.

Dr Mazithulela has known links to the South African government strategic planning unit and was key to the realignment of that country’s national research infrastructure, including nuclear assets and elements of the defence industry. He has a rich history in the field of research having previously served as vice-president of the National Research Foundation (NRF). Before joining the NRF, he was the executive director – biosciences at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in South Africa.

CSIR is one of the leading scientific and technology research, development and implementation organisations in Africa and it undertakes directed research and development for socioeconomic growth. As CSIR executive director for biosciences, Dr Mazithulela oversaw the strategic and operational management of a unit of 270 people with a turnover of R100 million per year.

He has served as innovation manager for CSIR’s Biochemtek division, director of the South African Aids Vaccine Initiative (SAAVI) at the South African Medical Research Council and managing director of Secure Plan Investment Limited in the UK

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