Interview with Wuraola Akande, Ordinary Board Member

1. May I ask you to introduce yourself briefly?

My name is Wuraola Akande. I am Nigerian; My Marie Curie Action project was MONACO-EXTRA (218242);full title: “ Monolithic Adsorbent Columns for Extracorporeal Medical Devices”. I spent part of my Ph.D training in Sweden, (Lund University, Protista Biotechnology), Germany (Polymerics GmBH), Austria (Krems Donau University), and the United Kingdom (University of Brighton). The international experience I gained has been tremendously useful and it is highly recommended for researchers to gain work experience abroad.

Since August 2015, I am based in Nigeria, where I work as a lecturer at the Department of Clinical Pharmacy and Pharmacy Administration, University of Ibadan, Nigeria

2. Why did you apply for the Ordinary Board Member position within the MCAA a second time?

I applied for the Ordinary Board Member position within the MCAA mainly because I wanted to be part of the core of an association that represents the voice of the Alumni and bridges the gap between researchers and the European Commission. I also intend to use the opportunity to foster greater public awareness of European research and develop global relationships within the worldwide research and innovation community, with particular emphasis on the Marie-Curie experience of international and inter-sector mobility. Finally, it will be my pleasure to develop support activities between Alumni at a national and international level as part of the MCAA.

3. You were an Ordinary Board Member within the previous Board. How do you intend to use the skills you gained from the experience?

I had the privilege of been a founding Board Member within the previous Board. These experiences, especially that of working with a team of international and cross-cultural people to make decisions, have been very helpful to my personal development, and will be useful in both my daily administrative role and my role as a Board Member within MCAA. 

4. As an Ordinary Board member within the MCAA, what do you plan to do first?

I would like to encourage and improve networking among Alumni, hence I will gear the executive of the Association towards classification of interdisciplinary research and efforts to reach members effectively through the MCAA web-portal and other social media.

5. What do you think the MCAA’s priorities should be?

The MCAA priorities should be to promote and support the Alumni in developing their careers, and to create a platform where Alumni can exchange ideas and collaborate on projects.

This could include, among other activities:

  • establishing itself as an important ‘voice of researchers’ within EU Research Policy;
  • guiding Alumni through the funding possibilities;
  • providing opportunities for further career development and training for the Alumni.

6. How do you plan to organise your work within the MCAA and especially your collaboration with the other Members of the Board?

I plan to have regular meetings with other Board members, either through Skype, e-mail or face-to-face meetings. Collaboration should be a strength of the association and members, hence we need to prioritise our objectives for the coming two years, setting clear deadlines and discussing progress.

7. What would you say to the Alumni, especially to those who elected you?

I would like to thank them for trusting and believing in me for this new role within the board, and I really want to bring together all the alumni to create a successful Association, which benefits researchers worldwide.

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