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Cleopatra, scientist who’s a burst of fun

Cleopatra Mugyenyi International Centre for Research on Women Africa regional office deputy director. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA | NMG
Cleopatra Mugyenyi International Centre for Research on Women Africa regional office deputy director. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA | NMG 

There was Cleopatra the ruler of Egypt, then there is Cleopatra Kama Mugyenyi, the deputy director, International Centre for Research on Women. No relation, apart from, perhaps, their strength and charisma. Cleopatra was born to Ugandan parents who met in Kenya, so Kenya is home. She studied in Birmingham, UK and got a Master’s degree at the age of 22 and completed her PhD in Australia at 30. Thankfully she’s isn’t meeting JACKSON BIKO over tea to talk about science or research, because Cleopatra lifts weights (and men), pushes her own car and paints. In short, a burst of fun.

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There are two of you; and one seems to conflict the other because scientists aren’t known to be exactly the life of a party like you are.

There’s a big misconception about scientists, but we are a lot of fun. You think we’re bookish, some aren’t. In fact, I wasn’t an ‘A’ student in school. A lot of ‘A’ students don’t actually end up in science...