The programme is part of a broader strategy to support capacity building efforts from the grassroots of academe, specifically in academic disciplines where the country, and NUST in particular, is experiencing a shortage of human resource capacity at Masters and Doctorate Level.
The programme targets Master Degree graduates, who have completed their first degree at NUST, with the intention to pursue Doctoral studies. Emphasis is placed on identifying candidates who have demonstrated exceptional academic performance and in particular, those that have the capacity and interest to pursue a career in academia and broaden or deepen their knowledge/skills/expertise up to Professorial level scarce skills disciplines. In addition to academic performance, special attention is given to candidates who embody the University’s values and display character, leadership potential, and commitment to service. Suitably qualified candidates will be invited to apply via advertisement and will be expected to undergo a rigorous screening and selection process.
This proactive and systematic approach to capacity building and in particular, the appointment of Staff Development Fellows (SDFs) under the GTA programme, creates a platform where NUST is able to identify and develop its own homegrown talent up to Professor level, thereby compensating for skills shortages in the short, medium and long term. This is in turn essential for business continuity and sustainability of the University.
In piloting the programme, the HR Department has partnered with the Faculty of Natural Resources and Spatial Sciences through its Department of Architecture and Spatial Planning. The first intake of Staff Development Fellows comprises of two NUST Bachelor of Architecture Honours graduates, Ms Ndeshipanda Iita and Mr Elao Martin, who both hold a Masters degree in Architecture from the University of Johannesburg, South Africa. The programme is expected to be rolled out institution-wide in scarce skills disciplines, particularly in the STEM fields.