Dr Rejoyce Gavhi-Molefe is a Resident Researcher in the Research Centre and the Lead Manager for the AIMS South Africa House of Science. Through her role as a manager, she provides leadership, direction and drive on the Public Engagement landscape; develops sustainable Public Engagement frameworks, provides capacity building and training for Public Engagement across diverse platforms and multidisciplinary approaches; and monitors, evaluates and disseminates learning of Public Engagement activities/programs undertaken by AIMS students, researchers, academics and alumni. Dr Gavhi-Molefe was a postdoctoral fellow in Mathematics at the University of Alberta, Canada, before she joined AIMS. Dr Gavhi-Molefe holds a PhD, MSc and Honours degree in Mathematics from Stellenbosch University and a BSc degree in Mathematics and Chemistry from the University of Venda. Her research interest is on Subdivision – an area of Computational Mathematics used in computer-aided design application areas, such as aircraft design and animation movie production. Her other research interests include Science Communication and Gender Mainstreaming in STEM. In 2010, she received the Rector’s Award for Succeeding Against the Odds at Stellenbosch University. She is currently studying towards an MPhil in Science and Technology Studies, with a focus on Public Science Engagement at Stellenbosch University.
Apart from a full-time position, Dr Gavhi-Molefe has been involved in outreach activities that aim to contribute to the upliftment of disadvantaged communities in the fields of mathematics and science education and advocacy for gender equality in STEM. She was a founding member of the Canadian organisation MentorUP; a founder of MathAfrica; co-founder of the South African Women in Mathematical Sciences Association (SAWMSA); Chairperson for the Women Advancement Forum: International Exchanges, Research and Academia (WAFIRA)-South Africa National Coordination Team; and initiated the AIMS Women in STEM mentoring program. Dr Gavhi-Molefe serves as a Council member of the National Advisory Council on Innovation (NACI) – a strategic actor in the South African National System of Innovation (NSI) and an advisory body to the government. She is also the Chairperson for the NACI Transformation in the NSI Programme. She is a co-founder of Women in STEMI and one of the convenors of the recently published book titled “Because Science is Fun – Stories of Emerging Female Scientists in South Africa” a documented account of inspirational and real stories about women scientists who challenged the odds to realise their dreams.