The United Nations’ 8th International Day of Women and Girls in Science is commemorated on 11 February. Women are the greatest resource any country has. Providing encouragement and opportunity for girls and women in science is one the most powerful ways of harnessing the means for the development of the country.

Professor Evelyn Madoroba of Microbiology in the Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology at University of Zululand teaches undergraduate modules in Microbiology and supervises postgraduate students. Her research focuses on surveillance of antimicrobial resistance among bacterial pathogens using conventional and molecular tools as well as bio-prospecting for potential novel antimicrobial compounds from microorganisms that live in extreme environments. In addition, another aspect of her research involves improving the status of fermented Indigenous African foods using potential starter cultures.

Currently, Prof Madoroba is a Fulbright Visiting Scholar at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in the United States of America. Her research is focussing on understanding antimicrobial resistance and virulence factors of bacterial pathogens using Bioinformatics.

Clarifying on why she opted for a career in Science she said because of her curiosity about how different biological systems work. She has always wanted to know how to provide solutions that can improve the quality of life of both human beings and animals.

Her passion is to bring more young girls into the Science field. “ it would be good to encourage young girls to undertake a career in science by making Science lessons at school engaging and exciting. Moreover, girls should be encouraged and intentionally supported so that they improve confidence in Science subjects. Young girls should be exposed to female Science role models through different platforms and be afforded the opportunity to interact with scientists to boost their interest in science. In addition, young girls should be encouraged to participate in science projects. Exposure to the diverse career options in science and the different subjects that are required is important to encourage young girls to join careers in Science.” Explained Prof Madoroba

Prof Madoroba is forever grateful for the support that she has received over the years, “I have received a lot of support, opportunities, and encouragement over the years, which contributed immensely to my career. I have been exposed to various aspects of Bacteriology in Diagnostic and Research laboratories as well as in academia. The journey has been extremely rewarding and fulfilling from many fronts. I received training from experts in the field of Microbiology and I have an opportunity to transfer the skills and knowledge to the next generation of Microbiologists.” Concluded Prof Madoroba.

  • Precious Shamase