SINAZO BALI, 23, has become the first black woman in Africa to earn an honours degree in biotechnology with distinction.
In a statement from the University of the Western Cape (UWC), Sinazo said completing her honours degree was difficult as she was unable to secure funding for her studies.
“It’s not easy to get funding because they [scholarships] score you according to your marks and you have to give feedback every now and then,” she said.
Biotechnology is the use of living systems and organisms to develop or make products, or “any technological application that uses biological systems, living organisms, or derivatives thereof, to make or modify products or processes for specific use
She studied the physiological and biochemical responses of the plant Salvia hispanica L., commonly known as chia.
Sinazo is among 635 honours graduates for UWC’s autumn 2017 graduation season. She is also in the top three for biotechnology at UWC.
She is currently studying toward her masters degree in biotechnology at the university.
“I am looking forward to this new chapter of my life, but at the moment I am focusing on my masters,” she said.