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Wednesday, 24 June 2020

Health and Wellness Sciences celebrates three doctorates

NEW DOCTORS: Lizel Hudson, Toyin Alabi and Merlisa Kemp NEW DOCTORS: Lizel Hudson, Toyin Alabi and Merlisa Kemp

The Faculty of Health and Wellness Sciences is celebrating the success of three doctoral graduates this week.

Among them are two academics from the Faculty, Lizel Hudson and Merlisa Kemp who will both be awarded the degree: Doctor of Radiography during tomorrow’s digital graduation.

Hudson, is the Work-Integrated Learning and Language Coordinator in the faculty and her thesis is titled: Teaching and learning threshold concepts in radiation physics for professional practice.

“The research aim was to contribute to an understanding of threshold concepts in the first-year radiation physics curriculum and pedagogical approaches used for the purpose of preparation towards competent and safe clinical practice,” she said.

Kemp is a lecturer and the BSc Diagnostic Ultrasound Programme Co-ordinator in the Department of Medical Imaging and Therapeutic Sciences. Her study is titled: Ultrasound investigation of risk factors for extracranial vascular pathology in patients with Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

“The most significant finding which indicates the positive correlation between vascular health of the major neck arteries and MS disability, means that MS persons with greater disability are not only at risk of developing carotid atherosclerosis, but are also at increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Therefore, early therapeutic interventional measures should be implemented to reduce extracranial atherosclerosis which will slow down progression of MS disability and reduce cardiovascular disease risk. Ultimately, the quality of life and life expectancy of MS persons will be improved,” said Kemp.

The third graduate, Toyin Alabi, will be awarded the degree: Doctor of Philosophy: Biomedical Sciences. Her thesis is titled: Effect of Anchomanes difformis extract on biochemical and histological parameters in streptozotocin-induced diabetes and diabetic complications.

“This study was able to establish the antidiabetic and hypolipidemic potentials of Anchomanes difformis. Furthermore, this study was able to demonstrate the ability of Anchomanes difformis to ameliorate and delay the progression of diabetic complications in the heart, kidney, liver, testes and epididymis,” she said

Alabi, an academic tutor, had to overcome several hurdles on her way to achieving her degree. “My doctorate degree is a dream fulfilled, however not without hurdles, but the most important and rewarding thing I learnt is to keep going, keep working and keep harnessing all the resources provided and available till you get to the finishing line. Despite the personal challenges I had such as a broken ankle in 2018 which kept me off my work for two months, and a dislocated elbow in 2019, I kept pushing and wasn't going to give in, this has brought to me my dream of 15 years: a PhD graduate.”

Written by Ilse Fredericks


Provides coverage for the Health and Wellness Sciences and Informatics and Design Faculties.