Getting to know Nonkoliso

As a child, Nonkoliso used to watch a television programme called 50/50 and that’s when her love for animals began. She studied BSc in Biological Science and Honours in Botany at Walter Sisulu University, and thereafter pursued a Masters in Zoology. After her studies, Nonkoliso had internships/contracts with several institutions such as Bayworld Museum, Environmental Affairs, WWF-SA, SANBI and NRF-SAIAB. She is currently working as a Collections Officer at NRF-SAIAB.

Her job entails conservation and maintenance of fish specimens, making sure that they are well preserved and well taken care of. She is responsible for the cataloging of specimens and recording every movement of our collection.

She spends most of her time working on the NRF-SAIAB Specify database, capturing data and also shelving specimens in the National Fish Collections building.

Her biggest learning in her job has been the continuity of research as there are still new emerging species and the reclassification of the existing ones.

Importance of collections: In Nonkoliso’s view, collections are valuable for research and education purposes and researchers use them to expand knowledge about aquatic biodiversity which contributes to environmental conservation and management.

Nonkoliso as a leader: Nonkoliso’s  understanding of leadership is that as a leader you must have the following attributes: visionary, make decisions, interact with everyone at all levels and be approachable. She grew up having a vision of working as a scientist and is currently working towards that vision.

She believes that developing young leaders is important for the longevity of the organization. Also, having a succession plan in place is important for the young and upcoming leaders to learn from experienced ones.

Currently not holding a leadership position, Nonkoliso foresees finding it a challenge to share her views about leadership due to her lack of experience. However, she expects the workshop to help her understand leadership and make it easier for her to ask relevant questions from superiors.

Anticipation for the workshop: Nonkoliso is looking forward to interacting with other people and learning more about leadership. She expects the workshop to expand her knowledge on leadership and this will help in the conservation and management of the SAIAB collection.

Preparation for the workshop: 

“In addition to the three articles that were emailed to us, I am reading about leadership.”

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