Reflection on JUCAN’s evolution and future direction, 03 February 2022
A flashback has been presented on Clinical and Nutrition Research Centre (JUCAN)’s evolution and future direction (2008 to 2022) at Jimma University College of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine hall, today. The presentation was followed by a discussion. Dr. Jemal Abafita, JU president in his opening remark said JUCAN has contributed a glittering and excellent achievement in capacity building effort and played a great role for Jimma University’s growth in its 15 years voyage. He added particularly its contribution in research and publications are immense in order to reform or change policies and guidelines regionally, nationally, and internationally.
Dr. Netsanet Workineh, vice president for research and community service in her message said, “Research is a creative work, it requires conducive environment and dedicated staff, sense of belongingness, generosity, etc. and Jimma University can take the path in all of these qualities and that is one of the reasons for its success.”
Prof. Tsinuel Girma, founder of JUCAN and Harvard University’s country director in his reflection on JUCAN’s journey (early, mid-time, and current contexts) said opportunity, need and capacity are the three pillars to commence and implement a project. He quoted Mahatma Gandhi that reads “the future depends on what we are doing in the present”. As a result, they have contributed a lot with regard to research and publication that has been implemented. Further, he added conducting research and getting published is somewhat easier than impacting and persuading to change a policy, and the implementation of the policy, which is a bit tougher.
Dr. Alemseged Abdisa, AHRI deputy director on his behalf, reflected on the attributes of the JUCAN and the importance of the mentorship network. In order to show the significance of facing challenges, he uttered, “In the middle of every challenge lies a great opportunity” Dr. Melkamu Berhane JUCAN’s Research PI has briefed on successfully completed projects in three years. He said they assist about seven Ph.D. students to start their study, several MSc students, particularly those who are working on microbiology, support training, and working on three ongoing local and global studies.
JUCAN performs studies on nutrition, HIV nutrition, and mal-nutrition, encourages female authors, and has published more than 70 international publications from its establishment, according to Wakwoya Adugna JUCAN’s administration head. JUCAN works on nutrition and clinical research to contribute to the understanding of malnutrition, communicable and non-communicable diseases of public health importance in Ethiopia.
Moreover, it contributes to the development and evaluation of new and improved methods and tools for the prevention, treatment, and control of malnutrition and communicable and non-communicable diseases. Jimma University officials, International Researchers, JUCAN staff, Ph.D. students, and invited guests have participated in the meeting, which was organized by JUCAN.