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CARTA mentoring process

posted Aug 2, 2012, 5:06 AM by Makau Ngola   [ updated Aug 6, 2012, 2:59 AM ]

Stephen Ojiambo Wandera a faculty member of Makerere University and a CARTA PhD fellow cohort 2, will link up with Dr. Isabella  Aboderin, a senior research scientist at the African Population and Research Center (APHRC)  in a mentoring role that will see him receive guidance in his PhD research on senior citizens in Uganda.  
Mr. Wandera’s PhD research is on determinants of health care utilization among senior citizens in Uganda.  Dr Aboderin’s research interest is in ageing in sub-Saharan Africa focusing on four areas; ageing policy and development agendas, social determinants of health in old age, health systems and access to health care in old age and Intergenerational support and family relationships.  
In Dr. Aboderin, Mr. Wandera has found a perfect match for a mentor and it is hoped that the relationship will culminate in exchange of ideas and experiences to shape his research.
Stephen Wandera (right) with Dr. Isabella Aboderin at APHRC offices
While visiting APHRC on July 31st 2012, Mr. Wandera presented to an audience comprising experienced researchers at APHRC led by the Executive Director Dr. Alex Ezeh, an outline of his PhD research proposal and indicated the design of the study.  He received valuable feedback which he said was crucial in shaping the design of the research in the future.

CARTA’s goal of building a vibrant African Academy capable of running world-class multi-disciplinary research which will positively impact on the public and population health is set to be realized through a process of rigorous training through Joint Advanced Seminars (JAS) and a mentoring process that pairs up-coming faculty members with experienced ones.  
CARTA identifies the needs of the faculty members (mentees) from their research interests and pairs them with their mentors who have same research interest for purposes of getting guidance in their work.  The mentor does not have to be necessarily the supervisor of the mentee, however, Stephen will now be supervised by Dr. Aboderin as the second supervisor.

CARTANews interviewed Stephen on the CARTA Mentorship program and got the following responses:
CARTANews: How do you feel now that you have a mentor at APHRC to guide in your PhD studies?
Stephen: I feel privileged and honored to have a mentor to guide my PhD studies. What makes it more interesting for me is that she is willing to be a co-supervisor. I feel have backup, guidance, and a sense of direction and belonging as well.

 CARTANews: What do you hope to gain from the mentorship process?
Stephen: Acquiring scientific writing skills, publication and scientific writing relevant to international standards, writing for policy communication, and learning from the giants in scientific world. 

CARTANews: What else can you say about the CARTA mentorship Program?
Stephen: The CARTA mentorship program is a brilliant arrangement for the fellows. It is a network that is critically needed by any PhD student on the African continent. I am really grate
ful about this initiative by the CARTA program. I encourage all the CARTA fellows to utilize this golden opportunity. All of us needed mentorship in academia. By standing on the shoulders of the giants, we shall be able to see far.