Saturday, October 16, 2021
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From assistant builder to doctorate holder- story of Malilangwe’s ecologist

Rumbidzai Muswera

CHIREDZI-The story of a Malilangwe Conservation Trust’s ecologist, Doctor Allan Tarugara (34), who began working as an assistant bricklayer in 2008 at Malilangwe and rose through the ranks by attaining a doctorate degree in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation as well as a permanent job in one of the Zimbabwe’s most celebrated wildlife conservancy is one that is inspiring. Malilangwe.
Dr Tarugara began working as an assistant bricklayer for a construction company that was doing renovation work at one of Malilangwe’s tourist lodges then shifted to leopard habituation working as an assistant for a resident wildlife filming crew before he got a scholarship through Malilangwe’s staff development program.
Doctor Tarugara, who comes from Zaka District, grew up in Chiredzi.
“I started as a general hand for a construction company that was doing renovation work at one of Malilangwe’s tourist lodges. I then went on to do leopard habituation work as well as being a lighting assistant for a resident wildlife filming crew that worked at Malilangwe,” he said.
“I got a scholarship through Malilangwe’s staff development program for a Bachelor’s Degree in Forest Resources and Wildlife management at the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) from 2012-2016 and a Master’s Degree in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation at Chinhoyi University of Technology (CUT) from 2017-2019 which he then upgraded to a doctorate between 2020 and 2021,” he added.
Malilangwe Conservation Trust General Manager, Mark Saunders also confirmed that Doctor Allan Tarugara rose through the ranks to be a doctor by utilizing the organization’s scholarship through staff development programs.
“We have a guy who began as an assistant builder and rose through the ranks by utilizing one of our scholarships for staff development and now he is permanently employed with us as an Ecologist,” said Saunders.
Currently Tarugara is working under Malilangwe’s Reasearch Department with keen interests in Terrestrial and Aquatic ecology.

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