The annual NSTF awards recognises academic exellence in South Africa. 

Wits University professors Michèle Ramsay, Judith Kinnaird, and Mark Collinson were winners at this year’s annual National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF) awards which took place virtually on Thursday, July 30. 

Kinnaird, the director of the economic geology research institute in the Wits faculty of science, won the management award for her leadership of the Centre of Excellence for Integrated Mineral & Energy Resource Analysis (CIMERA) 

“Basically, I’ve just been doing my job. Obviously, somebody thinks I’ve done it well,” said Kinnaird, speaking to Wits Vuvuzela ahead of the awards. 

I’m quite honoured to have won the award. It’s very important to Wits because it shows the calibre of the university,” Kinnaird said after her win. 

Professor of human genetics and director of the Sydney Brenner Institute for Molecular Bioscience (SBIMB), Ramsey, won the lifetime achievement award.  In a research career that spans almost 40 years, Ramsey has helped to set up one of the first human molecular genetics laboratories in the country. The lab examines genetic diversity in African populations for genetic predispositions towards diseases like diabetes   

Ramsey told Wits Vuvuzela, I feel that winning is an affirmation of the quality and value of the research of our whole team from the most junior student, to the postdoctoral fellows and all the colleagues with whom I work.

NSTF’s executive director Jansie Niehaus, told Wits Vuvuzela, “Our vision is to transform the country to one where science improves the quality of living, the profiles in science reflect the country’s population and education (particularly STEM education) functions properly. 

Niehaus continued, “The awards recognise the excellence of the candidate by assessing their impact on the people around them, the system, South Africa and the international space.  NSTF also celebrated their 25th anniversary at the ceremony. 

FEATURED IMAGE: Isolated winner’s circle: Winner of the Management Award Judith Kinnaird poses with her trophy at home. Photo: Provided.