BULAWAYO, April 29 (The Source) – Telone and the National University of Science and Technology (Nust) have signed a memorandum of agreement (MoU) to establish a framework for research collaboration activities in information communication technologies (ICTs).
The collaborative agreements are aimed at utilising research papers produced by students and academic staff, which usually become redundant after grading.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Telone managing director Chipo Mtasa said Nust was a prime tertiary institution promoting science in Zimbabwe thus the decision to engage the university.
“We want to be able to work on new products and innovations but as Telone, we cannot do it alone. As such, we are here to lean on you for guidance,” she added.
Mtasa identified possible areas of collaboration including development of ICT solutions, research to resolve identified challenges of a technical or commercial nature, commercialisation of identified academic research findings, project sponsorship, promotion of innovations and student attachments.
“Clients can tell us our product portfolio is not good enough and we don’t have enough engine room to note what is not good enough but Nust has and they will help us resolve such issues,” said Mtasa.
Nust vice-chancellor Lindela Ndlovu thanked Telone for recognising his institutions’ prominence in science research.
“It is a beginning and to my staff it is a challenge. If we fail to deliver, Telone has 13 other universities to turn to so we have to work hard and impress,” he added.
Ndlovu promised to initiate diversification in students focus from software development to include hardware production for the benefit of the corporate ICT community.
Telone said the MoU would serve as part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) by contributing to the learning process.
The company will also sponsor a computer laboratory and competitions in the research area of interest to Telone and the society.
Recently, the two institutions established a partnership which will see the telecoms company running a Telecommunications Engineering degree programme under an affiliate arrangement with the university.