MUT to host the National Science Week launch and webinar

Press release statement

For immediate release: 28 July 2022

Submitted by: The Department of Marketing & Communications

Via email:


MUT to host the National Science Week launch and webinar

Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) will host the launch of this year’s National Science Week (NSW) and a webinar to celebrate the role of women scientists as part of the build-up to the NSW, which runs on 1-6 August 2022. The launch of the NSW will take place on Saturday, 30 July 2022, at the University’s iconic Pixley kaIsaka Seme Hall from 08h00 in the morning.

“We are honoured that MUT has been chosen to host the launch of the National Science Week. The NSW is about bringing science to the people. As the only South African university solely based in the township, bringing the launch of the NSW to MUT is part of efforts to widen access to sciences to the broader South African society,” said Dr Manyane Makua, Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning at MUT.

The NSW webinar, on the other hand, will be held on Friday, 29 July 2022 at Hall 7 at MUT’s North Campus. The webinar, which is titled: “The untold story of women scientists in MZANSI”, will start at 11h00 and will also be available to participants who wish to join the conversation virtually through Zoom.

The webinar is intended to celebrate women in the sciences and highlight some of the challenges they encountered in their various career trajectories.

The webinar is hosted in honour of all women in science, who have defied all the odds, from science being male-dominated to societal expectations of what women should and should not do. The webinar will also explore the role of professional development societies and organizations in advancing women in STEM, careers in the post-pandemic era and issues of Gender-based violence.

The webinar will be hosted by Xolile Ngubane of the Technology Station in Chemicals at MUT. It will feature three speakers who are in various stages in their journeys through their careers in science.

The first speaker is Professor Zilungile Mkhize-Kwitshana, Associate Professor: Department of Medical Microbiology at the University of KwaZulu Natal (UKZN). Professor Mkhize-Kwitshana is a C-3 National Research Foundation-rated scientist and former Head of the Department of Biomedical Sciences at MUT. Miranda Mpaka-Mbatha, Lecturer in the Department of Biomedical Sciences at MUT, is the second speaker. Mpaka-Mbatha is the 2018 Vice-Chancellor’s Best Emerging Teacher Award recipient. She was recently awarded an international scholarship to read for a doctorate with the University College of London. The last speaker, Zakithi Mkhize is a doctoral candidate in the HIV Pathogenesis Programme at the Nelson R. Mandela School of Medicine, UKZN. Mkhize is also an avid science communicator and youth STEM activist. Through her YouTube channel BlackGirlScientist, Mkhize shares her journey through science to help others to navigate the field.

Follow the link for more on the NSW focus programme.                                                                                                                                                                   Ends