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University of Michigan African Presidential Scholars (UMAPS)

Jacqueline Adongo is an assistant lecturer in the Department of Open and Distance Learning, Makerere University, Uganda. She has a MA in literature from Makerere University and is currently working towards her PhD at the same institution. While at U-M, Jacqueline will work on her research project entitled, “Rethinking Childhood: Child Identity Formation in Post-War Northern Uganda.” Jacqueline’s U-M mentor is Professor Elizabeth Goodenough (Arts and Ideas in the Humanities Program, Residential College).

Zerihun Birehanu is a lecturer in and director of the School of Theater Arts, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. Zerihun has an MA in International Performance Research from the University of Warwick, United Kingdom. At U-M he will conduct research for his PhD degree on the topic of “Politics, Performance, and Governance in EPRDF Ethiopia.” His mentor is Professor Anita Gonzalez (Department of Theater and Drama, School of Music, Theater and Dance).

Patrick Cobbinah is a lecturer in land use and environmental planning at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana. Patrick holds a PhD in Human Geography from Charles Sturt University, Australia. His UMAPS project, “Urban Growth, Neoliberal Governance Failures, and Water Scarcity in Accra,” will be conducted under the mentorship of Professor Larissa Larsen (Urban and Regional Planning Program, Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning).

Lemlem Beza Demisse is a lecturer and researcher at Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. She is currently working towards a PhD in Nursing in a joint program between Emory University and Addis Ababa University. During her participation in the UMAPS program she will further her research on “Disaster Prevention, Preparedness, Response and Recovery in Two Public Health Hospitals of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia,” under the mentorship of Professor Sue Anne Bell (Department of Health Behavior and Biological Sciences, School of Nursing).

Kholekile Nicholas Malindi is a lecturer the Department of Economics, Stellenbosch University, South Africa. He has a Master of Commerce in Economics from Stellenbosch University, where he is also currently enrolled in a doctoral program. While at U-M, Kholekile will work with Professor David Lam (Department of Economics, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts) on “Labor Market Determinants of Income Dynamics for a Highly Unequal Society: The South African Case.”

Adélaïde Nieguitsila teaches on parasitology, mycology, and general microbiology at the Université des Sciences et Techniques de Masuku, Gabon. Adélaïde has a PhD in Cellular and Molecular Biology from Université de Paris 12, France. While at U-M, she will conduct research on “Microbial Water Quality and Biological Contamination in Lakes of the Moyen-Ogooué Region.” Her U-M mentor is Professor Lutgarde Raskin (Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering).

Okechukwu Nwafor is head of the Department of Fine and Applied Arts at Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nigeria. He has a PhD in Visual History from the University of the Western Cape, South Africa. During his residency, he will work towards completing his book, The Ubiquitous Image: Obituary Photographs in South-Eastern Nigeria and the Allure of Public Visibility. Okechukwu’s mentor is Professor Omolade Adunbi (Department of Afroamerican and African Studies, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts).

Christina Osei-Asare is a lecturer in the Department of Pharmaceutics, School of Pharmacy, at Central University, Ghana. She holds an MPhil degree in pharmaceutics from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and is currently working on her PhD in the same program. During her time at U-M, Christina will work on a research project entitled “Formulation of Solid Dosage Form of Lippia Multiflora for Managing Stress and Hypertension.” Her mentor is Professor David Sherman (Medicinal Chemistry, College of Pharmacy; Chemistry, LSA; Microbiology & Immunology, Medical School).

Kabir Otun is an assistant lecturer at Kwara State University, Malete, Nigeria. Kabir earned an MSc degree in chemistry from the University of Ilorin, Nigeria, and is currently working towards a PhD at the University of South Africa. While at U-M, he will be working with Professor Adam Matzger (Department of Chemistry, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts; Department of Macromolecular Science and Engineering, College of Engineering) to further his research on “Iron Carbide Fischer-Tropsch Catalysts for the Conversion of Biomass to Liquid Transportation Fuels.”

Uhuru Portia Phalafala is a lecturer in the English Department, University of Stellenbosch, South Africa. She has a PhD in English Literature from the University of Cape Town. At U-M, Uhuru will continue work on a book based on her dissertation research, Restless Natives, Indigenous Languages, and Revolution: Keorapetse Kgositsile’s Critical Biography. Uhuru’s U-M mentor is Professor Gaurav Desai (Department of English Language and Literature, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts).

David Ngendo Tshimba is an assistant lecturer and research fellow at the Makerere Institute of Social Research, Makerere University, Uganda. He has an MA in Sustainable Peace and Conflict Management from Uganda Martyrs University. At U-M, he will work on a research project titled “Transgressing the State: An Inquiry into Violence in the Rwenzori Borderlands, ca. 1830 – 1998.” His mentor is Professor Derek Peterson (Department of History and Department of Afroamerican and African Studies, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts).

Tebaber Chanie Workneh is the chair of the social anthropology department at the University of Gondar, Ethiopia. Tebaber has a PhD in Social Anthropology from Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. His UMAPS project will examine “The Roles and Status of Indigenous Medicine for Primary Health Care Services in the Amhara National Regional State (ANRS), Ethiopia.” Tebaber’s mentor is Professor Elizabeth King (Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, School of Public Health).

Demis Mengist Wudeneh is a lecturer and researcher in the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, the University of Gondar, Ethiopia. He has a Master’s degree in Geography and Environmental Studies from Addis Ababa University, and is currently pursuing a doctorate from the same institution in Socioeconomic Development Planning and Environment.  During his residency, he will conduct research on “Implications of Large-scale Agricultural Investment for Livelihood Security and Regional Development: The Case of Gambella Region, Southwest Ethiopia.” Demis’ mentor is Professors Arun Agrawal (School of Environment and Sustainability).

Faida Zacharia is an assistant lecturer at the University of Dodoma, Tanzania. She has an MSc in Natural Resource Assessment and Management from the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. While at U-M, she will work with Professor Kelly Askew (Department of Anthropology and Department of Afroamerican and African Studies, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts) to further her research on “Small-scale Groundwater Irrigated Agriculture and Livelihoods in Drylands Areas: A Case of Dodoma Region, Tanzania.”