Category Archives: CAREER

NUST Young Inventors Club wins 2nd place at #SANBioLabHack2018

The #SANBioLabHack2018 took place in Pretoria, South Africa, this week with 17 undergraduate students coming together to turn their passion for innovation by addressing afro-centric solutions to common lab issues.

Staff Writer | Nust ZW

2 minute read

The 2nd place winning team from the Zimbabwe National University of Science and Technology’s (NUST) Young Inventors Club impressed the judges with their low-cost PCR machine, which is also known as a Thermocycler that is commonly used to amplify segments of DNA.

Aimed to bring the ideas and ideology of the open hardware movement to the African education community, LabHack opens up opportunities for equipping labs in novel and sustainable fashions by facilitating the open design of key laboratory equipment.

When asked what inspired their prototype, Team Zimbabwe captain and NUST Electronics Engineering student Clifford Mutsave said the team wanted to live up to their name, Young Inventors.

According to the team, the best centre in Zimbabwe only has two PCR machines mainly because they are very expensive.

The cheapest PCR machines on the market cost in the range of forty thousand US dollars and are thus often unaffordable by the institutions offering science and technology education, resulting in students lacking a practical exposure to how these kinds of equipment are operated.

In high school we were also victims of theoretical lessons on how to operate the lab equipment, resulting in a lack of overall appreciation on how to use these pieces of equipment. As NUST students who have their country at heart – especially young scientists in the high schools – we have come with a design of a low cost and economic yet effective PCR machine,” Mutsave states.

Mutsave’s team also included Applied Chemistry student, Miriam Guni – the only female participant in the group – and Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering students Ropafadzo Manyuchi and Nakai Mashamba.

The team were also accompanied by their mentors, Nigel Nyathi, Givemore Kanyemba along with Tafadzwa Banga who is the founder and president of a non-profit organisation Young Inventors from NUST.
Young Inventors was established in 2017 after getting support from the Yali organisation with the idea to give innovative African youths the platform to engage in shaping their communities.
As an organisation, we want to ensure that youths who are innovative get recognition as much as those in the academic sector do. It has been a trend for the past in Africa, Zimbabwe specifically, that a child who excels in academics is considered to be more important than others whilst those who are innovative are not so much appreciated. As of now we have managed to establish a club at NUST and what we seek is to break departmental barriers by allowing students from different departments to work together. Winning this award is just the beginning of more great things to come,” Banga said.

The LabHack model was first piloted in Zimbabwe and conceived by University of Oxford researchers, Dr Louise Bezuidenhout and Helena Webb with the intention to be a competitive and educational event where multidisciplinary teams of students compete around three challenges to build low-cost laboratory equipment.

The South African edition of LabHack was supported and hosted by SANBio / BioFISA II Programme which is a shared biosciences research development and innovation platform for working collaboratively to address some of Southern Africa’s key biosciences issues in health, nutrition and health-related intervention areas.

Members of the Young Inventors
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Great Zimbabwe University to launch Community Radio Station in Masvingo

One minute read

Great Zimbabwe University will soon launch its Campus Radio Station following the recent successful installation of the digital equipment imported from abroad.

The campus radio station, the first to be owned by a university in Zimbabwe, is now awaiting licensing from responsible authorities before it can start broadcasting.

Vice Chancellor Professor Rungano Zvobgo said the radio station will reach out to people living in Masvingo and its surroundings, adding that this non-commercial radio station will broadcast a variety of educational programmes and programmes to enhance social awareness and educate the audience about their social responsibilities.

“We are going to establish a radio station as a university, the first of its kind in Zimbabwe. The radio station will usher in a new era in the history of GZU. We hope to train the best broadcast journalists in Zimbabwe.

Radio plays an important role in our lives and quality journalism is essential in educating, informing and entertaining,” said Prof Zvobgo. The campus radio station will serve as an incubator of the broadcasting talent available at the University.

GZU RADIO

As the government moves to licence more radio stations, graduates from GZU are expected to be well primed for absorption into these new radio stations due to the practical experience they would have acquired from the Campus Radio Station.

Besides terrestrial broadcasting, a website for the station from which the station will stream live, is currently being developed. With livestreaming, the GZU Campus Radio will be accessible to people outside its broadcast radius through the internet. – GZU Facebook

The Keyword Approach To A CV & Cover Letter

Staff Writer | @campusmoments13
4 minute read

In a keyword search of resumes and cover letters, employers identify, either electronically or manually, important words or phrases related to the job description. Candidates will then be selected for further review based on the number and/or level of matches found in the search.

According to Registered Organisational Psychologist & Career Coach, Phiona Martin, “Most companies are using (Applicant Tracking Systems)ATS and if you are making online applications, you can no longer ignore the requirement for your CV to be ATS “friendly.”

To develop a keyword resume and cover letter, study the job description carefully, identifying important words/phrases from both the responsibilities and qualifications of the job (highlighted in red for demonstration purposes only). Incorporate these words and phrases into your resume and cover letter using your background and experiences.

Sample Cover Letter

career chat cover lettr.png
Incorporate words and phrases directly from the job description that pertain to your skills and experience (shown in red for demonstration purposes only. Do not use red in your resume or letter)

Phiona Martin recommends the following seven ways to ensure your CV is ATS attractive and actually lands in a human recruiters hands.

  1. Mirror the Job Description wording in your CV, including the tense it is written e.g if job description says “management of suppliers” change if your CV says “managing vendors and contractors”. This requires customising your CV for every job. NB:  Do NOT copy and paste job description word-for-word you may be penalised by ATS or recruiter.
  2. Nail those keywords. There is lingo in every profession/industry. It maybe software, skills, certifications, licenses, responsibilities, or  procedures. The words that matter in your profession need to be included in your CV/Resume. Use both acronyms and spelled out form of titles.
  3. Repeat important keywords related to your skills a few times in your CV. Do NOT merely stuff as many key words as possible as the new scanners pick up this tactic. It will also be a turn-off to the recruiter who actually reads the CV if your CV does get past the scanner process.  A recommended suggestion is using a keyword two to three times per CV, taking into account that it is coherently placed.
  4. Make use of free cloud services like Wordle and TagCrowd to help you determine the right keywords to use in your CV. Just copy and paste the job description into the generators and the software will tell you which keywords are important to include in your CV.
  5. Only use text. Don’t use graphics, logos, or tables in your CV as fancy graphics, images, tables, and logos confuse the ATS. Anything placed in header and footer areas is invisible to the ATS, do not put important information in these sections.
  6. Headings. Put in straight forward traditional headings such as; Work Experience, Education, Qualifications, Experience, Hobbies, and References and avoid creative titles as they may not be recognised by the ATS
  7. Job Titles. Pay attention to the job title in the advert. E.g. if you are a Finance Manager, but the job title is for an Accounting Manager, be sure that you include “Accounting Manager” somewhere in your CV.

Sample CV

career chat 2.png
Incorporate words and phrases directly from the job description that pertain to your skills and experience (shown in red for demonstration purposes only. Do not use red in your resume or letter)
Get more from the #CareerCoach at http://www.phionamartin.com/blog. Sample CV & Cover Letter adapted from unl.edu/careers

 

4 study skills that will help you succeed in your career

Erica Cirino
2 minute read

If you’re like most college students, much of your time outside of class is spent studying. Studying is an important part of college, one that goes beyond just helping to get you good grades. It’s a part of your academic routine that—whether you realize it or not — prepares you for a career as well.

Here are four study skills in particular that can carry over into your career:

1. MANAGING YOUR TIME

Figuring out how long it will take you to complete an assignment or review for an exam isn’t an exact science. Every student is different, so each student requires a different amount of time for studying. Over time, you’ll figure out how to best manage your time.

Good time management means you get your assignments done on time (or well ahead of time), but it also means you pace yourself appropriately so that you’re producing the highest quality of work possible. Knowing how to keep and follow a calendar is another important part of time management.

Just as you need good time management when studying, you need it when you enter the working world. If you establish a time management habit that works for you in college, you can easily apply it to your career when it comes to accomplishing various tasks for your company.

2. READING (FOR MEANING)

College students are required to read a lot — from textbooks to novels to research journals to newspapers, and everything in between. Reading in college goes beyond just taking in words; it means absorbing and understanding their meaning so you can remember certain ideas and facts for your tests and assignments.

No matter what career you choose, you can likely expect more reading — whether it be research for a meeting or important email communications. That’s why it’s important to become a strong reader in college. Learn how to highlight and take notes when you read, and also how to pace yourself to truly digest the content.

3. STAYING ORGANIZED

A key part of successful studying is keeping yourself organized. It’s hard to argue the fact that it’s much easier to get your work done with a clean desk than a messy one. The same goes for a neat vs. messy bookbag.

Organization means different things to different students. Yet, no matter what your organization style, the key idea of being organized is to know exactly where your things are when you need them.

Being organized is also important for your career. As a working adult, you’ll need to keep track of many important documents, bills, schedules and more. Learning how to keep your things in order while still a college student will make your transition to a working adult much easier.

4. WORKING WITH OTHERS

Many college students find being part of a study group to be helpful to their academics. Studying with others can give you more motivation to study, and your study buddies may be able to help you through especially challenging classes.

But being a part of a study group has another benefit: from deciding when to meet to collaborating on group projects, studying with others teaches you how to work as part of a team.

Being a team player is a critical career skill. In most careers, you’ll have to interact with others. The more social skills you build while in college, the more easily you’ll be able to achieve greatness with other people in your workplace.

Erica Cirino is a contributing writer for Varsity Tutors, a live learning platform that connects students with personalized instruction to accelerate academic achievement.
First Published by  USA Today College 

30 behavioral interview questions you should be ready to answer

The Muse
4 minute read

To help you better prepare for your next interview, here are 30 behavioral interview questions sorted by topic (in addition to 31 common interview questions here) that you can practice.

Not sure how to answer these questions? Here’s a quick guide on how to craft job-landing responses.

TEAMWORK

For questions like these, you want a story that illustrates your ability to work with others under challenging circumstances. Think team conflict, difficult project constraints, or clashing personalities.

  1. Talk about a time when you had to work closely with someone whose personality was very different from yours.
  2. Give me an example of a time you faced a conflict while working on a team. How did you handle that?
  3. Describe a time when you struggled to build a relationship with someone important. How did you eventually overcome that?
  4. We all make mistakes we wish we could take back. Tell me about a time you wish you’d handled a situation differently with a colleague.
  5. Tell me about a time you needed to get information from someone who wasn’t very responsive. What did you do?

CLIENT-FACING SKILLS

If the role you’re interviewing for works with clients, definitely be ready for one of these. Find an example of a time where you successfully represented your company or team and delivered exceptional customer service.

  1. Describe a time when it was especially important to make a good impression on a client. How did you go about doing so?
  2. Give me an example of a time when you did not meet a client’s expectation. What happened, and how did you attempt to rectify the situation?
  3. Tell me about a time when you made sure a customer was pleased with your service.
  4. Describe a time when you had to interact with a difficult client. What was the situation, and how did you handle it?
  5. When you’re working with a large number of customers, it’s tricky to deliver excellent service to them all. How do you go about prioritizing your customers’ needs?

ABILITY TO ADAPT

Times of turmoil are finally good for something! Think of a recent work crisis you successfully navigated. Even if your navigation didn’t feel successful at the time, find a lesson or silver lining you took from the situation.

  1. Tell me about a time you were under a lot of pressure. What was going on, and how did you get through it?
  2. Describe a time when your team or company was undergoing some change. How did that impact you, and how did you adapt?
  3. Tell me about the first job you’ve ever had. What did you do to learn the ropes?
  4. Give me an example of a time when you had to think on your feet in order to delicately extricate yourself from a difficult or awkward situation.
  5. Tell me about a time you failed. How did you deal with this situation?

TIME MANAGEMENT SKILLS

In other words, get ready to talk about a time you juggled multiple responsibilities, organized it all (perfectly), and completed everything before the deadline.

  1. Tell me about a time you had to be very strategic in order to meet all your top priorities.
  2. Describe a long-term project that you managed. How did you keep everything moving along in a timely manner?
  3. Sometimes it’s just not possible to get everything on your to-do list done. Tell me about a time your responsibilities got a little overwhelming. What did you do?
  4. Tell me about a time you set a goal for yourself. How did you go about ensuring that you would meet your objective?
  5. Give me an example of a time you managed numerous responsibilities. How did you handle that?

COMMUNICATION SKILLS

You probably won’t have any trouble thinking of a story for communication questions, since it’s not only part of most jobs; it’s part of everyday life. However, the thing to remember here is to also talk about your thought process or preparation.

  1. Give me an example of a time when you were able to successfully persuade someone to see things your way at work.
  2. Describe a time when you were the resident technical expert. What did you do to make sure everyone was able to understand you?
  3. Tell me about a time when you had to rely on written communication to get your ideas across to your team.
  4. Give me an example of a time when you had to explain something fairly complex to a frustrated client. How did you handle this delicate situation?
  5. Tell me about a successful presentation you gave and why you think it was a hit.

MOTIVATION AND VALUES

A lot of seemingly random questions are actually attempts to learn more about what motivates you. Your response would ideally address this directly even if the question wasn’t explicit about it.

  1. Tell me about your proudest professional accomplishment.
  2. Describe a time when you saw some problem and took the initiative to correct it rather than waiting for someone else to do it.
  3. Tell me about a time when you worked under close supervision or extremely loose supervision. How did you handle that?
  4. Give me an example of a time you were able to be creative with your work. What was exciting or difficult about it?
  5. Tell me about a time you were dissatisfied in your work. What could have been done to make it better?
The Muse is your ultimate career destination, offering exciting job opportunities, expert advice, and a peek behind the scenes into fantastic companies and career paths. We believe that you can and should love your job–and be successful at it–and we want to help make that happen. Whether you’re just starting out, changing career paths, or aiming for the C-suite, we’ve got everything you need to take charge of your career.

The answer to: “Should I submit my resume as a Word doc or PDF?”

Your resume’s ready to go out there and get you the job. You’ve updated it, highlighted your transferable skills, and triple-checked for typos. Now the only question is how you submit it. Should it be a PDF or Word document?

The answer’s complicated, but to help you make the best, most educated decision, I enlisted the help of two of our career coaches who specialize in resume reviewsAlex Durand did not mince words when he told me that the answer is always PDF.

His sound reasoning? “Leaving your resume in any word processing format exposes you to the possibility that someone might inadvertently alter it. You want interested parties to review the polished, error-free copy.”

This is obviously a good point. A PDF cannot be altered, whereas a Word doc can. Durand instructs: “Don’t give your power away.”

On the one hand, it’s hard to find fault with that reasoning, but on the other, it seems that there’s a bit of gray. Coach Theresa Merrill, who says she feels “strongly” about this subject, notes that there are “pros and cons to both formats.” She goes on to explain: “How you use them depends on how you are submitting them.”

Aha! There’s that gray I mentioned a moment ago. Merrill advises: “If you’re emailing a resume directly to someone, then use a PDF as these are typically virus-free when downloaded. Also PDFs retain formatting.”

However, the reason you might opt for a Word doc is because of the complicated nature of ATS tracking systems. Although she acknowledges that it’s not as much of an issue as it used to be, problems can still occur. The issue, she explains “is that the software may not track or scan keywords on PDFs as well as it does on Word documents,” which means, regrettably, that your application could fail to reach a human.

If you have no idea what an ATS is or if you’ve ever used one, you should probably read thisbefore you do anything else.

Merrill sees no harm in submitting both—if you’re applying through LinkedIn or the company’s website—however, in most cases, this isn’t possible. After all, you’re often prompted to attach your resume—not two.

So here’s what to know as you make your decision: The PDF’s typically going to be the better-looking version, but if you have any tiny worries about an ATS missing your keywords, the Word version is the way to go.

I know what you’re thinking—I’m job searching, I’m full of tiny worries.

I completely understand. Think about it this way: If you’re applying to a role with no referrals or internal connections, you should play it safe and submit your resume via Word because you need all the ATS help you can get (and it’s simply not worth it to take any chances).

But, if you have someone on the inside looking out for your application or you’re emailing your materials directly, then a PDF’s better.

The key, in any event, is to stand out and get noticed—and more often than not, simply applying online won’t make that happen. So if you have the hiring manager’s contact info, go ahead and send your resume and cover letter in a separate email, noting that you also applied online. Not sure how to track down who the hiring manager even is? Career expert Jenny Foss has three fantastic ideas for how to do just that.

And before you stress out too much about this decision—keep this in mind: The fact that you’re even taking the time to read up on this shows that you’re ahead of the pack. That tells me that you’re a hard worker who will land the right job. So, proofread that resume one more time and then submit it.

This story was written by Stacey Lastoe for The Muse, your ultimate career destination, offering exciting job opportunities, expert advice and a peek behind the scenes into fantastic companies and career paths. We believe that you can and should love your job–and be successful at it–and we want to help make that happen. Whether you’re just starting out, changing career paths, or aiming for the C-suite, we’ve got everything you need to take charge of your career. Curated from USA Today College

Top 10 Companies for Internship in Zimbabwe?

Staff Blogger | Africa University

After reading @prowl_magazine’s #TopTenTuesday (yes we love to read magazines other than our own) we have curated their twitter story here. It may give you ideas where to look if you are yet to go on attachment. Feel free to add other companies to the list. 

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5 things you must do to secure attachment in 2017

by Lesley Tinashe Maniwa | Nust-ZW | image creds: stocksnap.io

Finding a place for attachment in Zimbabwe has become a hustle, and being a college student in Zimbabwe, I have had my fair share of experiences which I have found useful and can be shared to help you on your quest to get industrial attachment.

The industrial attachment or the internship is usually a period of 8 months of work related learning experience for a student that was designed by colleges in Zimbabwe and other countries world over. The aim of the Industrial attachment period is to equip and prepare students to be fit for the corporate world. It is part of the requirements of what students have to go through before they are released as a complete product upon graduation.

1. Appreciate that you don’t have much choice

Most students get it wrong when they tend to believe that they have a choice when it comes to companies they want to be attached to. However, in Zimbabwe it can be very dangerous because that same spot you want, is also wanted by thousands of other students too. Every student has a big company name in his or her mind. Everyone wants to be attached at big companies like Econet, Zesa, Old Mutual, CBZ Holdings, ZimPlats, Mimosa, CABS, Delta Beverages, Innscor amongst others. 

 Remove your focus on these big names my friend. I believe that as a student the only option you have is to cast your net wide that way you will never miss it. You may not always get your dream attachment place.

Take this classical situation: at first students will be shunning the Government Institutions just because most of them don’t pay interns. However, when all your options have turned out to be unfruitful, time is ticking and then you will see that you don’t have an option but to go to the government and beg for a place so that you can be able to progress with your studies.

My advice to you is that cast your net wide.  If something comes up on your way take it even if it’s not what you wanted, take it. Something will always come up and you can change.

The first attachment job I got was at one company in Chinhoyi. they gave me an offer, and I accepted.  The the HR Manager said, “…if you get a better option Lesley you can always change.” Within the next 2 weeks I got other offers and I had to choose the one which was best for me.  

2. Create connections or networks

One thing that am sure will work for you are connections, that I’m 100% sure of.

To those due for attachment starting July 2017, I am sure that by now you should have created connections with the following groups of people.

Students who are going for attachment and those coming from attachment. Your colleagues who are currently on attachment will link you up with their bosses and it can be easy for you to get a place for attachment.

Your lecturers and college industrial liaison. Lecturers play a major role when it comes to finding a place for attachment, for your information, 90% of the interviews I attended were organized by my school lecturers. I just got calls from companies inviting me for interviews and I could not remember sending my CVs to the companies but my lecturers and the college did a great job for me and I really appreciate.

Your relatives, family friends, church colleagues, this may sound awkward and corrupt but believe me if you have a relative who has a high post or links to companies that you wish to be attached to, then you have to make use of them. Keep in touch with them and they can help you out.

3. Work for good grades.

I know that when we are at college we will be busy fooling each other saying that distinctions don’t matter what matters is just passing. If you are one of those people who subscribe to that then you need to change your mentality because good passes do matter companies do need students with distinctions.

If you have good passes, chances are high that you will secure a place for attachment at your dream organisation. It’s simple, work hard, play hard.

4. Do your applications on time

It should go without saying, but you should find out when the companies that you wish to apply to will be taking a new group of attachés.

Once you have the information make sure you send your applications on time so that you won’t miss the opportunity. (You can even send in application in advance)

5. Pray

Prayer is the most important thing in everything you do; it is a way of communicating to God. Pray to God tell him what you want and he will surely answer you. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. Philippians 4:6

Obtaining a place for attachment doesn’t have to be an overly stressful experience. I hope the tips I have shared with you will help you.

Lesley is a final year Human Resources Management Student at National University of Science and Technology and can be contacted +263771 191 863, you can also follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

University Students Live off Betting.

By Sineke Sibanda

Metso is a student at the National University of Science and Technology. He has three other sibblings, one is starting her degree programme, the other just started her ‘A’ level at Empandeni boarding school and the last one is writing her form four examinations this year.

With much of his parents’ attention going to his three female siblings, he has to take care of himself. It has not been easy, and he has since resorted to soccer betting, a form of gambling to subsidise his welfare.

Metso is among a host of other college students who have enrolled into this gambling circus to try and make ends meet as they strive towards completing their studies.

At a time when Zimbabwe is marred with high rates of unemployment, industries characterised with no activity, with only big rusty keys hanging on the falling gates; betting halls have become the new industries with regular patrons thronging these spaces from as early as 7am in the morning till 1030pm in the evenings daily.

Patson Nkomo, a security official at one of the betting halls in the city of Bulawayo observes that some have become regulars at the shop, and only absent when they fall sick, (giggles).

“Others are now informal employees here (laughs), they are here 24/7. With the issue of unemployment so high in Zimbabwe, this is where others make their living, including university students from a number of colleges in the city,” said Nkomo.

under-over-goals-tips-bets

According to Admire Mapani, a student at the Bulawayo Polytechnic, betting has become a way of life for most college students.

“There is so much peer pressure we go through at school,” said Mapani. “You meet people from different families and you are also faced with the challenge to survive atleast, so the little your parents send you, you spin some of it through betting with the hope of multiplying it.”

However, issues to do with addiction of this sort of gambling tends to haunt.

According to Metso, he finds it hard to pass by the shop without being tempted to bet.

“I think I’m becoming an addict. I find it hard to pass by the soccer shop without being tempted to bet. Sometimes I even use my lunch money. I know its bad but I can’t control it sometimes”

This sort of gambling has become a normal routine and to others a little bit addictive. For the lucky ones, they have managed to get the best out of the experiences and to the unlucky, lots of money has been lost to the betting halls.

According to Mapani, college life can be terrible especially if you are far from home.

“It can be pretty tricky and because there are no grants or student stipends, anything that brings money could be ideal,” Mapani added.

Over the years, alarming rates of prostitution have been told in colleges, selling of drugs by male students and now betting is the new trade. The most important pre–occupation is making money.

Good as it may sound, and business as usual for the for the owners of the shops, concern is largely on the development part of the African countries. Questions on whether betting can really drive the ailing African economies.