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High flying Motswana woman nominated for 7 Global Awards

Basuti Gerty Bolo

A Motswana space science enthusiast, Basuti Gerty Bolo has amassed seven nominations from various international organisations recognising her role in technological development.

Bolo, a candidate for Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) with Botswana International University of Science and Technology (BIUST), holds MSc Information Systems and Data Management, Post graduate Diploma in Space and Atmospheric Science, BSc Hons Geographical Information Systems, and Certificate in International Development Studies for NGOs.

Bolo is currently working as an Endowed Chair Educational Technologies at Africa University in Zimbabwe. She is a Member of the Advisory Council for Online Learning at Africa University. She is also a Peer Reviewer of Zimbabwe Council for Higher Education.

Bolo was nominated for 7 Global nomination awards; Digital Leader Award 2021; WomenTech Ambassador Award 2021; WomenTech Community Award 2021; Special Recognition: Women in ICT Award (WIICTA); Global Award for Achievement 2021,  Global Leadership Women in Tech Award 2021 and African Network of Women in Astronomy-African Astronomical Society (AfNWA-AfAS) Award for Women in Astronomy 2021.

She was also selected among the top 35 most influential women in Tech in Africa 2021 by the CIO Africa.

“Winning nomination awards is something that am proud of, I feel humbled, honored, appreciated, valued and motivated, that I can represent my country, and other women internationally at global level,” Bolo told WeekendPost

“Whatever and whenever I do something, I do it for the best and benefit of others, my culture, my country, and continent and for the world.  My focus is not on winning but on learning, gaining experiences and networking with other women who can be my role models and mentors that I can work with together as a team to address global challenges.”

Bolo said she is competing with thousands of women from different nations all over the world. “All these gives me strength as a woman that I can also lead and contribute towards empowering others by sharing knowledge on use of technologies with others globally.

Driving my Goals is one of the most important things, my passion is to see more women into technology and to reduce gender inequality in the sector, and also to promote Science technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) for Girls and women. I am a role model and mentor to other women and girls at a global level.

Space science is generally a field that is dominated by male, but Bolo have had burning desire to put her name as well. “At first it was a dream of being an Astronaut, and later developed a passion on space science and technology,” she said.

“I have been interested in Science Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) programs from a very young age. I used to be one of the best students in mathematics and science from primary to tertiary level.”

Bolo says her curiosity for space science and technology was sparked by an interest in knowing more about unexplained mysteries of things happening in space, such as how astronauts and satellites are launched on space, the causes of some plane crashes among others.

“When studying a Post Graduate Diploma in Space and Atmospheric Science, I carried a research on the Impact of Geomagnetic Storm (sun storms) on Satellite Electronic devices and Navigation Systems. The research aimed at finding out why Satellites crash or disappear on Space with an unknown failure,” she said.

Bolo is an Endowed Chair Educational Technologies, Space Science, technology and STEM promoter, ambassador, mentor, advisor, a Peer Reviewer for Higher Education and Research.

She is also Africa50 Innovation Challenge Expert, United Nation Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) Space4women Network mentor, Advisor to SpaceConnex, Managing Director for Mobile Studies Africa and Global Women in Technology Ambassador.

Bolo is an International Academy of Space Law of Russia ambassador to Botswana, Space for Women, Women in Aerospace Africa, and Africa Space Tourism Society ambassador. She was currently appointed Group of 100 Women Global Leaders (G100)_Space Technology Wing: Botswana Country Chair.

Bolo assumed a leadership role in expert meetings, mentoring, inspiring and motivating others regional and international such as the SADC, African Leadership Congress, NASA Space Apps Innovation Challenge and the United Nations.

Bolo’s initiative aims at to get more women and girls to study the STEM program and to enter the space sector in order to drive the SDGs and solve global challenges, to empower women and reduce gender inequality.

She is mentoring more than 100 students per year globally on STEM and Space science, technology and applications. She was one of the mentors and judges for the Africa50 Innovation Challenge projects (2020), NASA Space Apps Innovation Challenge projects for the countries of Philippines (2020) and Italy (2021).

On March 2021, she was invited by the Islamic World Scientific and Cultural Organization (ICESCO) as a guest speaker to motivate Islamic women at the ICESCO Women ICONs launch: An Inspiration for the Future that was held on the 11 March 2021 in Morocco.

On October 2021, she was invited to attend the UN/Brazil/United Arab Emirates Space for Women Expert Meeting: Initiatives, challenges and opportunities for women in space that was held at the Dubai Convention Centre (Expo 2020), Dubai in United Arab Emirates from 21-22 October 2021. She was also the moderator for the Discussion session: How to Empower Women into Space Group

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