Top Honours Student Drawn to Natural World

Ms Aadila Moosa, who received her BSc Honours degree in Biological Sciences from UKZN’s School of Life Sciences (SLS), has the distinction of being the only summa cum laude honours graduate in this year’s round of degree conferrals by the School.

Having a keen interest in the biological sciences, Moosa saw UKZN as the best choice to pursue her academic career. She said her future academic career plans motivated her to study for her BSc Honours degree, as a precursor for further studies in biological sciences.

‘Biological sciences is an incredibly diverse field; as such, throughout my undergraduate degree I had been exposed to a variety of study areas ranging from botany to zoology. An honours degree prepares me for higher-degree study, should I wish to pursue it at a later stage, and it also benefits me by enhancing my employability,’ she said.

While Moosa felt the pressure and intensity of her studies, she said in hindsight it was an incredible experience that had developed her skills and knowledge as a researcher. She found the friendships made along the journey just as valuable.

‘My honours year was incredible. It was very fast-paced and quite intense with a lot of work needing to be done in such a short space of time. However, the friends I made throughout the year and the relationships formed are undeniably the greatest takeaway for me. I am very grateful for the opportunities I’ve had,’ she said.

Moosa said that while there was no real secret to her academic success she would advise students to manage their time and, most importantly, to take breaks from studying to ‘relax and chill.’

‘I believe to be academically successful requires a combination of smart habits and the determination to always do your best,’ said Moosa.

At the recent College of Agriculture, Engineering and Science annual Awards function, Moosa received the School of Life Sciences Biology Award for the best Honours student in Biology for 2018.

Currently Moosa has embarked on an internship programme with the National Research Foundation (NRF). She hopes to follow a career in research and development in the future.

Words: Zolile Duma

Photograph: Abhi Indrarajan