May I ask you to introduce yourself briefly (name, nationality, Marie Curie Action, Project, international experience…)?
I am Wuraola Akande from Ila-Orangun, Osun State in Nigeria. My Marie Curie Action project was MONACO-EXTRA (project 218242).
I am currently doing a one year mandatory national youth service corps at the University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria. I received a bachelor's degree in Biochemistry from University of Ibadan, Nigeria. I then studied for a Master of Pharmacy at the University of Brighton. I did my Pharmacy pre-registration programme with Tesco in-store Pharmacy at Hackney, UK, and registered as a pharmacist with the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain in July 2008, before I became a Marie Curie early stage researcher at the University of Brighton during my Ph.D programme funded by Marie Curie MONACO - EXTRA project 218242. This was an international project (IAPP), which involved four universities and three small companies.
During my Ph.D, I was at Lund University Department of Biotechnology, Centre for Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Lund, Sweden on an Erasmus grant for three months; I was at Danube University, Department for Clinical Medicine and Biotechnology, Centre for Biomedical Technology, Krems, Austria for another three months and also attended the mini MBA programme at the same university.
I went on industrial secondment to Polymerics GmbH Berlin, Germany and Protista Biotechnology AB, IDEON, Lund, Sweden each for a month.
I also attended international conferences organised by the MONACO-EXTRA project, such as summer school in Antalya, Turkey and winter school in Semmering Austria.
In August 2012, I went to Nigeria for a six-week programme, known as "Foreign Pharmacy Graduate Orientation Programme" at the University of Ibadan, which enabled me to sit for the professional exam and register with the Pharmacist Council of Nigeria.
I completed my Ph.D in February 2013.
Why did you apply for the Ordinary Board Member position within the MCAA?
Having read the list of potential Members of MCAA and discovering that I am the only one resident in Africa, I became curious to network and interact with various researchers from more developed parts of the world; and I, therefore, decided to apply for the position of Ordinary Board Member to enable me to gain from, as well as possibly contribute to, the pioneering efforts to build the MCAA into a formidable body of researchers in the world.
As an Ordinary Board Member within the MCAA, what do you plan to do first? – or what is the first item you plan to put on the agenda?
First and foremost, it is my desire to identify and link up with appropriate national and regional research sectors with a view to encouraging, advancing and elevating the research activities of the Members of the MCAA. Therefore, my first item on the agenda will be to gear the Executive of this association towards constant classification of inter-disciplinary research proposals and efforts for easy reach of Members through the social media, e.g a blog within the MCAA web portal.
What do you think the MCAA’s priorities should be?
The MCAA is an association with diverse aims and activities and I believe its priorities should be to promote and exploit the full potential of its Members and other Marie Curie Fellows and create a valuable platform, where Members can exchange ideas and collaborate on projects.
How do you plan to organise your work within the MCAA and especially your collaboration with the other Members of the Board?
My work within the MCAA can be done through effective communication via the web-portal at least monthly, to other MCAA Members and by creating a chat forum for the Board Members to enable an effective organisational communication forum, to exchange ideas and discuss important issues.
How will your work within the association help build a “community spirit” among the Marie Curie Alumni?
My work within the association can help build a 'community spirit' among the Marie Curie Alumni by having an open forum chat within the web-portal, having mutual understanding with other MCAA, and carrying every Member involved along with any plan or suggestion.
Do you plan to meet Alumni? When?
Yes, most likely annually; the location and time will be decided by all MCAA Members through the web-portal. It is difficult to meet up apart from during the meetings because of location.
What would you say to the Alumni, especially to those who elected you?
"A big thank you to all, for your trust and your vote" would be my expression of appreciation.