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Sibonile Moyo

Researcher, Zimbabwe

Sibonile Moyo holds a Master of Science Degree in Computer Science, and is currently a lecturer in the department of Computer Science of the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) in Zimbabwe. She is currently lecturing in the following courses: Database Design and Management, Business Information Systems, Software Engineering Methodologies, Artificial Intelligence, Expert Systems and Decision Support Systems. Areas of research interests include, E-Learning Systems, ICTs for Development and Application of Expert Systems & Database Systems.

As well as being Head of the Computer Science Department at NUST, Sibonile is a member of the NUST Gender Research cluster, a research group that seeks to promote gender equality in communities around the university and within the country. Sibonile is also a consultant in computer systems development, providing computerized business solutions to businesses so that they gain a competitive advantage over their business rivals. She chairs a board of Trustees called Lahlithotho Women’s Economic Empowerment Trust (LWEET), which aims at capacity building among women in rural Matabeleland South, Insiza District in order to provide them with alternative livelihoods. The main thrust of the trust is to economically empower these women with business initiation and management skills, so they can embark on their own indigenous businesses, becoming independent from their husbands, most of whom have since abandoned them in pursuit of employment in neighboring South Africa because of the economic situation in Zimbabwe.

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My Experience with the GRACE Research Team

Research Title: How can university level computer education contribute to the preparation of women for careers in design and development computing? How can training of women computer science students be instrumental in increasing women graduates’ empowerment so that they have the capacity to select careers in design and development?
Firstly I would like to thank Dr Buhle-Thatha for introducing me to GRACE. She has been quite an inspiration and a mentor. I have learnt quite a lot from her through this GRACE project. Thanks to Ineke, Anne and the rest of the Graciousnesses, you have given me a global view of what gender research is all about, and you have made me aware of other feminist researchers. I have learnt the art of qualitative research, action research, and the art of researching self. Thanks to the morning pages, they have helped to improve my writing skills. The research I’m currently involved in means I have to research self. When students talk about how National University of Science and Technology (NUST) lecturers treat them, I reflect on all classes I have handled, and ask myself, the question, “did I contribute towards the betterment of the girl child or not?” This research has made me change the way I perceive myself as a woman, and the way I perceive women learners. I know I can do that which is perceived by many as a male occupation, and I have come to know that female learners are equally capable as their male counterparts. I have developed self confidence and have learnt to accept and address research outcomes, even if things do not reflect well on me as the researched.

Owing to our focus group discussions with former NUST students, I have since established contacts with them to promote our female learners by providing them with places for their industrial attachment (work placements) in design and development fields. I have also since introduced a female computer scientists club for student learners within the department that seeks to assist students to share ideas on how to tackle some issues they face during their time at university. In the coming academic year we plan to invite successful women computer scientists to give seminars to the group. This should help provide role models for the learners.

 

 

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Grace is an initiative envisioned and funded by
the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), developed by Research For the Future (RFF) and managed by The GRACE Project Voluntary Association
.
Grace est une initiative initiée et financée parle Centre de recherches pour le développement international (CRDI), développée par Research For the Future,
et gérée par l'Association Volontaire Projet de GRACE .