“After two years of online graduation and recognition ceremonies it is a pleasure to all be together in person today to celebrate the successful completion of the Master’s Degree by our 2021-22 group of AIMS students,” noted Prof. Barry Green, Director of AIMS South Africa at the Graduation and Recognition of Achievement Ceremony held on 28 June 2022.
Twenty-eight students (including 7 women) from 9 African countries completed the program. Of these ten students were conferred their degrees by the University of Cape Town (UCT). Students registered at Stellenbosch University (SU) and the University of the Western Cape (UWC) will receive their official degrees at ceremonies to be held later in the year. In addition, one degree from UCT and three from UWC were also conferred in absentia to four students who completed the program last year.
This ceremony brings the total number of AIMS graduates since 2003 to 955 from 41 African countries, of which 35% are women.
The ceremony was officiated by Prof. Maano Ramutsindela, Dean of Science, University Cape Town, Prof. Kailash Patidar, Acting Dean of Science, University of the Western Cape and Prof. Nico Koopman, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Stellenbosch University.
“Congratulations on your momentous achievement!” noted Ms Lydie Hakizimana, Chief Executive Officer of AIMS who was the guest speaker at the event, “But completing your AIMS study does not mean you leave our family. Instead, you are joining our more than 2500 vibrant alumni who have gone on to make an impact across sectors, disciplines and industries in Africa and beyond.”
Mr Mendrika Henitsoa Rakotomanga, from Madagascar and Ms Esther Wanangachi Lwazi, from Malawi, spoke on behalf of the students. “The past 9 months were the best time of our lives. On behalf of our fellow students, we would like to express our sincere gratitude to AIMS. We consider ourselves lucky to have come through the doors at AIMS, our success is not only based on what we were fed in class, but also the people around us who welcomed us. AIMS was like living in one big extended family.”