Rhodes University to confer honour on Professor Salim Abdool Karim

An honorary Doctor of Science degree will be conferred on the world-renowned Epidemiologist today.

Rhodes University has announced that it will confer an honorary Doctor of Science (DSc) degree on epidemiologist Professor Salim Abdool Karim at the university’s second virtual graduation held today for master’s and PhD students. Prof Karim is widely recognised for his scientific and leadership contributions to the Aids and COVID-19 pandemics. Rhodes University vice-chancellor Dr Sizwe Mabizela said, “Our nation owes you an inestimable debt of gratitude and appreciation for all that you have done to give much hope to many South Africans and for being a passionate advocate of science to guide the South African response to Covid-19. In the many public briefings on COVID-19, you have always provided extremely lucid explanations and unambiguous information for the South African public and explaining the scientific basis for the government's response to the pandemic."

Prof Karim’s primary academic appointments include director of CAPRISA and CAPRISA Professor for Global Health in the Department of Epidemiology at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University. He was a co-leader of the study that provided the first evidence for antiretroviral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) against HIV infection, a finding that was hailed by UNAIDS and WHO as one of the most significant scientific breakthroughs in the fight against AIDS and was named one of Science's "Top 10 Scientific Breakthroughs of 2010." Among his many accolades he is a Member of the US National Academy of Medicine and a Fellow of the Royal Society. Of this honorary degree, Prof Karim has said that he is grateful to Rhodes University for this honour.