Prof Olubukola O. Babalola
Leader, Microbial Biotechnology Group, Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture, Science and Technology, North-West University, Mafikeng Campus, South Africa.
Organisation for Women in Science in the Developing World (OSWD)
Knowledge Exchange Forum: Important early career milestones and support
Prof Olubukola O. BABALOLA (Nee: Ademuyiwa) Pr.Sci.Nat is a National Research Foundation rated established scientist. She obtained PhD in Microbiology with the Visiting Research Fellowship of the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and the Postgraduate Training Fellowships of the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD) that sponsored her stay and training at the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE), Nairobi; and the Kenya Sugar Research Foundation (KESREF), Kisumu (over 12 years ago!).
Babalola had two postdoctoral experiences from standard laboratories. First at the Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel through Feinberg Graduate School Postdoctoral Fellowship and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Fellowship. The second postdoctoral exposure was at the University of the Western Cape, South Africa. Before the latter she received training in Biotechnology at the University of Cape Town through United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) initiative. She is a member of the Organisation of Women Scientists for the Developing World, South African Women in Science and Engineering (SAWISE) and the South African Association of Women Graduates (SAAWG) among other. Before her academic engagement, Prof Babalola worked as a laboratory assistant in the Total Quality Control Unit of an expatriate fruit and vegetable company in Lagos carrying out various microbiological and chemical analyses on the company's on-line products. There and then, she had a first-hand experience on-the-job training in Good Laboratory Practices (GLP), the rudiments of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP), Total Quality Control (TQC), and Quality Assurance (QA). Prof Babalola has active teaching and research track records supervising students at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Over 70 scholars of Microbiology have graduated under her research mentorship. Besides the four postdoctoral scholars working under her mentorship currently, five had. Babalola is the immediate past Head, Department of Biological Sciences, North-West University, South Africa. Her research interest is in Plant-Microbe interactions. She is into a prolific career with ~140 research outputs (72 peers reviewed journal articles, 10 book chapters, and 47 conference proceedings/abstracts). She enjoys international collaborations, research grants and many awards. Babalola has > 20 professional certificates in her area of interest from the University of California, Berkeley, USA, University of Mauritius, Reduit, and Bradford University, UK to mention a few. Her wealth of internal experience spans through Americas, Asia, Europe, and Oceania. With her research potential, in the present dispensation she is without reservation leading a Microbial Biotechnology Research laboratory, a mini united nation, with students from within and outside Africa, making substantial contribution to Science, her original research motivation. In 1996, Olubukola met with, Toba, a man whom she loves so much. They are happily married with two clever children of both sexes.