“No problem can stand the assault of sustained thinking.” – Voltaire

Tumisi Beiri Jeremiah Molelekoa


Technology & Innovation

Organisation / Company

University of Johannesburg


Tumisi Beiri Jeremiah Molelekoa, 32, is a food science and technology lecturer and researcher at the University of Johannesburg. He lectures modules such as food biochemistry, food technology, food analysis and instrumentation, and research methodology. Having completed a PhD in the chemistry and fermentation of microbial metabolites, his research involves the use of microorganisms to sustainably produce value-added products with potential application in various industries such as food, agriculture, pharmaceutical, cosmetics and textiles. He is also a co-director at the Centre for Innovative Food Research (CIFR).

Tumisi is involved in various administrative and supervisory roles that include module coordination and the supervision of MSc and PhD students. Furthermore, at the faculty of science he serves as a transformation committee member. He is peer-reviewed in science journals, is an advisory board member for the department of biotechnology and food technology at Tshwane University of Technology, an organising member for the Northern Branch South African Association of Food Science and Technology, and the Brics YEA Young Expert for 2024 tasked to develop the energy outlook for Brics countries.


PhD (Science) Food Technology


Generally speaking, I am proud to see the success of people I have positively influenced. First and foremost, it was an exhilarating experience to learn that a former group of students I taught at the brink of the Covid-19 pandemic applied the principles of biochemistry to develop a food product with enhanced properties and shelf-life. This was due to an approach I used in class, where the incorporation of daily experiences was used in complex chemistry scenarios. It is exciting because this concept translates knowledge into practice by fostering entrepreneurship and solving some of the leading societal challenges.

On the other hand, the mentorship of young people particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds is very dear to my heart. From the onset, my wife and I took in and hosted a couple of students that had no university funding in 2018. Through our interactions, motivation, and follow-up, some of the students are now influential people in their respective fields who also apply the same principles to lift other while they succeed. This has to establish a foundation (Ku-Hanana Foundation) together with the primary objective to “skill-up” the youth through academic mentorship.


Yes, firstly, I believe my parents influenced my journey by providing that opportunity to learn, secondly, my teachers and lecturers who were always patient to indulge my inquisitive mind, and currently my mentor Prof. Adebo, who has shown me the ropes in academia, my spiritual leaders, my wife and child who propels me to be the best I can be, and lastly God who gives me strength to succeed in my endeavours.