We are happy to welcome Mzingisi Mqhum as an Outreach & Communications Officer. Early in his career, Mzingisi worked as a high school teacher in Botswana. After relocating to Perth, Australia, he decided his calling was working with underrepresented groups as a diversity, equity, and inclusion strategist and project officer to serve their communities and neighbours, giving them voice, strength and agency.
Mzingisi’s educational background includes a Master of Urban Planning from the University of Melbourne, a bachelor’s degree with honours, and a double bachelor’s degree in geography and international business from Curtin University in Perth. He also holds a diploma in secondary school teaching from the University of Botswana.
“My guiding light has always been to reimagine a just society, driven particularly by issues of social justice, equity, and inclusion. Now employed with the Outreach and Communications team at AURIN, I continue to look for opportunities where our reach can extend to attract diverse groups to access and interrogate datasets and analytical tools that will keep them abreast of urban, regional, and social planning processes and developments,” Mzingisi said.
While working as a research assistant for Professor Peter Newman at Curtin University in 2009 and 2010, Mzingisi co-authored a research paper on transit-oriented development implementation and governance. Following this experience, he knew his future contributions towards a just society would be through evidence-based research and outreach, which he considers just as impactful as advocacy.
As AURIN’s Perth-based Outreach & Communications Officer, Mzingisi will focus on understanding and communicating the needs and impacts of researchers, policymakers, and industry partners.