The Regional Council of the Caribbean Association of Medical Technologist (CASMET) has awarded Dr. Felicia Ikolo, an Assistant Professor in St. George’s University’s Department of Biochemistry, with the Outstanding Academic Achievement Award for the Biennium 2013-2015. She was presented the award at the recently concluded CASMET Biennial General Meeting and Scientific Symposium, which took place from October 12-16 at Paramaribo in Suriname.
“Many thanks to members of the Grenada branch of CASMET. This award means a lot to me,” Dr. Ikolo said. “I am grateful to the Regional Council of The Caribbean Association of Medical Technologists for choosing me as a recipient of this award, which encourages me to continue to strive for excellence in everything I do. I intend to keep encouraging younger ones to continue to pursue academic excellence and to be the very best that they possibly can in any field they find themselves.”
Dr. Ikolo, a CASMET member and Fellow of the Institute of Biomedical Science (FIBMS) of the United Kingdom, also thanked the award sponsor, Ministerie van Volksgezondheid Suriname. On hand to receive it on her behalf was the country representative of Grenada branch of CASMET, Grant Lambert, a faculty member in SGU Department of Microbiology. Mahesh Percy and Suresha Devarapalli from the Department of Pathology also attended the meeting.
Dr. Ikolo, who recently published a paper in the peer-reviewed journal Molecular Biosystems, joined the profession of Biomedical Sciences after obtaining a Bachelor of Science from Bendel State University in Nigeria, followed by a two-year postgraduate training and internship in the diagnostic laboratories of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital in Nigeria. Following her postgraduate training and internship, Dr. Ikolo sat for and passed the qualifying examination to become a Member of the Institute of Medical Laboratory Sciences of Nigeria. After setting up and working in the diagnostic Laboratory of St. Augustine’s Medical Services in Grenada for a few years, Dr. Ikolo joined SGU as an employee in 2001.
According to Dr. Ikolo, working in an educational Institution like SGU afforded her the opportunity to fulfill her educational aspirations by pursuing and obtaining a Master of Science from Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge, UK, and later a doctorate from Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. Dr. Ikolo states that she was encouraged along the way by several SGU students, faculty, and staff, including Ted Hollis, Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences; Allen Pensick, Provost, St. George’s University; Denis Paul, Vice Provost for Institutional Advancement; and her past and present department chairs including Sharmila Upadhya; as well as her colleagues. In addition, she received “invaluable encouragement and support” from Clare Morrall, Professor, School of Arts and Sciences; Mark Williams, Professor, Department of Biochemistry; Professors Gary Glack and Iain Sutcliffe; and friends from Northumbria University and Newcastle upon Tyne in the UK.
Dr. Ikolo noted that she would not be where she is today without the immeasurable support and encouragement of her husband, Bawo, and five children. Her parents (Hon. Chief & Mrs. B. U. Onyenokwe), siblings, relatives, and friends are all significant contributors and she will ever remain grateful to each and every one of them. Dr. Ikolo believes in divinity and says that she is most grateful to God Almighty for everyone and for everything.
By Carina Francois