A meeting was held on 11 August 2023 at Sokoine University of Agriculture, College of Forestry, Wildlife and Tourism, where the college principal, Dr. Agness Sirima, and the college Human Resource officer, Mr. Damas Liduke, met with newly recruited academic members of staff, Tutorial Assistants. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss important matters that would ensure good performance at their workplace by abiding to the rules, maintaining the code of conduct, developing self-discipline, and excelling as researchers in terms of publications and consultancies.
During the meeting, Prof. Yonika Mathew Ngaga, an academic member of staff at the Department of Forest and Environmental Economics, as well as a former College Dean and former DVC on Planning and Finance, shared valuable insights and advice. Here are the key points discussed during the meeting:
- Work ethics and consideration for students: Prof. Ngaga emphasized the importance of work ethics and urged the Tutorial Assistants to not only follow the rules but also to be considerate towards the students. Recognizing that students are the main customers, he highlighted the need for empathy and understanding in their interactions. Prof. Yonika Ngaga sharing his experience and insights to the members of staff
- Punctuality and respect: The Tutorial Assistants were reminded to report early to their workplace and to show respect towards their seniors. Prof. Ngaga emphasized the importance of being mindful of time as a valuable resource and treating colleagues with respect.
- Responsible use of public facilities and adherence to the law: The staff members were advised to be cautious with the use of public facilities and to abide by the law. The consequences of not following these guidelines were made clear, emphasizing the importance of responsible behavior.
- Discouragement of love affairs between staff and students: Prof. Ngaga and Dr. Sirima strongly discouraged any romantic relationships between staff and students, as it can interfere with work and reduce work efficiency. Maintaining professionalism and boundaries was emphasized.The college principal, Dr. Agness Sirima giving her advice on work ethics and code of conduct to the members of staff
- Empowerment of young female staff: The college principal, Dr. Agness Sirima encouraged young female staff members to value their worth and not allow themselves to be taken advantage of. She emphasized that everyone is equal before the law and that all staff members should be treated with respect and fairness.
- Reputation and integrity: The Tutorial Assistants were advised to develop a good reputation by keeping time, maintaining standards, and upholding integrity. They were reminded that they represent the image of the university and should strive to uphold its values.Mr. Damas Liduke giving his insight on the imporatance of integrity to the members of staff
- Importance of reading guiding documents: The staff members were encouraged to develop a culture of reading important guiding documents, such as “Up the Ladder” and the “Harmonized Scheme of Service.” This would help them become aware of their duties and responsibilities.
- Registration on Research gate and Google scholar: Members of staff were also encouraged to register to these research platforms using SUA email address as it has an impact in ranking of repsective departments and university at large in terms of research activities
- Wise use of salaries and avoiding loans: Mr. Damas Liduke, the college Human Resource officer, advised the young academic staff on the wise use of their salaries. He cautioned against taking loans from banks, as it can lead to a cycle of debt that is difficult to break.
- Mr. Damas Liduke emphasizing on wise use of salaries and abstaining loan taking at early years of employment
- Stress management: The Tutorial Assistants were advised on stress management, as stress is a part of life but does not need to be a source of reduced performance at work.Miss Khadija Mchelu giving her opinions on stress management to academic members of staff
- Attendance of announced meeting: the college principal also emphasized the importance of responding to various called meetings especially seminar presentations as it is part of learning as young staffs but also an assessment factor during end of probation periods.
the meeting provided valuable guidance and advice to the newly recruited Tutorial Assistants. It emphasized the importance of work ethics, adherence to rules, self-discipline, and excelling as researchers. The staff members were encouraged to apply the shared knowledge in their daily work and to contribute to the growth and development of the college and university as a whole.