Student Researcher of the Year Award

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Rhodes University 2020 Community Engagement Student Researcher of the Year Award
Rhodes University 2020 Community Engagement Student Researcher of the Year Award


Theodore Orlando Duxbury is a third year published PhD Candidate in Pharmacy, done in collaboration with the Rhodes University Community Engagement Division. Mr Duxbury has published in five academic journals, one of which is a book chapter and presented at nine local and international conferences. Born of Somerset East in the Eastern Cape, the principles of Ubuntu fuel his vision to uphold essential human virtues. His work addresses health inequalities and facilitates rural development by promoting epistemic justice, leadership and health literacy. Throughout his academic career, he devoted his time to community engagement and community development participating in various activities that promote health awareness and health literacy. These activities include lecturing undergraduates, workplace health promotion projects, National Science Festival Exhibitions, student volunteering, student wellness, national science week workshops and student mentorships. This all serves to illustrate his motivation and action to holistically addressing the health and social challenges in Makhanda and the surrounding communities. His work earned him the prestigious, Investec-Rhodes Top 100 Student Leadership Award in 2019 and his academic achievements allowed for him to be invited to be a member of the Golden Key International Honorary Society in 2019. He recognises that as a healthcare professional, it is time to consider not only the aspects of medical care, as important as it might be but to also consider its social determinants. This serves as the ideal foundation onto which a more productive society could be promoted.


Mr Duxbury is deeply committed to his research communities in which he spends time building relationships understanding their lived experiences and responding meaningfully to their challenges. This was evident when the COVID-19 pandemic broke. Mr Duxbury immediately took it upon himself to run workshops in all the villages in the Amakhala area before lockdown. He made sure that the communities that he had engaged with received the most current and accurate education about the virus that he could provide which might ensure their safety. “Such is the nature of this outstanding civically engaged scholar, deeply ethical and compassionate.” – Rhodes University Community Engagement Division.

Source:  Rhodes University Community Engagement Division

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