Some of Tom's colleagues in Chemistry at University of Buea
We did not have much time to get to know the Department when we first arrived in late September. After four months here, Tom feels that he can now say a few words about the colleagues in Chemistry. This is a University with six thousand students, just about half the size of ETSU, but has the same size teaching faculty members, ten full time plus some part-timers. On the books, they are much bigger, as they have 5 to 6 members are current on leave outside Cameroon. They have a masters program as well, but they are not taking any students, as the Department is already short handed in handling all the undergraduate courses offered. Clearly that they are offering more courses than ETSU. The lab courses, which they call them "practicals", are offered only to majors. All other students only take lecture parts without labs. For every 3 hour lecture courses, they must lecture 3 hours a week plus recitation for 1.5 hours in smaller groups, this is where the loads built up quickly. Typical teaching load is depending on the rank and/or research activities. Tom is teaching officially just two courses, one kinetics with 4.5 hours a week and one p-chem labs, which has three sections with 3 hours each. So the total contact hours for Tom is very high. But setting up their p-chem labs is what Tom wanted to accomplish this year, so he spends every Friday from 8am to 6pm in the labs. And he will have ~ 50 formal reports to grade in the next month before the end of this semester! Now you know a bit about the situation here, let's talk about some faculty members in the Department. It has a lot of interesting and colorful people. We will just limit to the ones with PHD degrees this time.
Chief Mac is the acting chair, organic chemist, he was featured last week. Click here to see more about Mac.
Tom's closest colleague here is probably Paul Chongwain, a physical chemist in spectroscopy. He was in contact with Tom before we got to Cameroon. Even thou his name sounds Chinese, it is as Africa as you can get! Paul is quiet, systematic and very able scientist. You can see him with his whole family in the corresponding picture file.
Josepha Foba-Tendo received her PHD from Britain, she is quick and considerate. You will not believe that she has 4 children with two of them in their teens. She specialize in solid state chemistry and is doing research in a variety of subjects related to local interests.
Joseph Ngwa-Yong, another Chinese sounding name, was trained in the US. He was on leave in Helsinki when we first got here, but came back recently. We live close to each other, have plan to walk more together around our neighborhood. He is an organic chemist, and is now interested in chemistry related to terrorists.
Aaron Tening is another organic chemist, he took over my general chemistry classes after two weeks and is really loaded down by that course with a total about 700 students!
Samuel Fanso-Free is a Dartmouth alumnus, bio-organic chemists. He is also served as the vice Dean of Science College. A wonderful, friendly individual, he has plenty of fun stories about his years in the US.
There are six others plus Tom to make the Department. It is a close group, they support each other just like ETSU Chemistry Department. It's nice for Tom to switch to this Department without skipping a beat!
Click here for the corresponding picture file