Name: Loriane Jennifer Ayo-Ola Yanclo
Host Institution: Stellenbosch University
Course: MASTER OF SCIENCE IN FOOD SCIENCE
Thesis: Effects of heat treatments on postharvest quality and shelf life of pomegranate (cv. Wonderful) fruit
A brief story about my experience studying abroad
It was a great new for me, knowing that my vision of studying abroad came true. Since I like
discovery, I did not mind coming to South Africa to continue my postgraduate studies and gain
some knowledge. Leaving my home country for an unknown culture was a great adventure
filled with uncertainties, curiosity, excitement and sadness. And this dream came true with
Intra-ACP Sharing Capacity to Build Capacity for Quality Graduate Training in Agriculture in
African Universities (SHARE) scholarship opportunity that made this study possible and
research support from the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture
Studying in South Africa, the Rainbow nation, provided an opportunity to interact, engage and
understand cultural diversity in addition to the diversity back home (Benin) through which I
have further developed and appreciated individual differences and made lifelong contacts for
future collaborations and knowledge sharing especially in the research field.
Post graduate and International office was amazingly helpful with a warm welcome for a first
timer stranger in a foreign country. The scholarship coordinators including Mrs. Dorcas Loga
Okello, Ms Chernelle Lambert, Mr Christopher Muller and Mrs Carmien Snyman were very
helpful throughout my journey.
Studying MSc. In Food Science at Stellenbosch University enable me to improve my skills and
acquire more knowledge, especially working under the South African Research Chair in
Postharvest Technology (SARChI) under leadership of Distinguished Prof. Umezuruike Linus
Opara whose help, motivation and support as well as positive environment encourages creative
thinking, skill and talent development. The weekly discussions at the Postgraduate discussion
forum (PDF) under SARChI and the weekly Food Science department postgraduate seminars
stimulate our research growth through lecturer and student contribution.
The variety of the local cuisine especially roasted meat (braai), chakalaka, pap were
appreciated. Moreover, I enjoyed the scenic views of cape towns and vine farms.
This scholarship opportunity allowed me to interact with people from different nationalities.
Firstly, my language skill really improved since I am French speaking. Secondly, the interaction
with my study leader Prof. Umezuruike Linus Opara, with all his advices and imputes towards
my thesis, allowed me to learn a lot. My laboratory works under the South African Research
Chair in Postharvest Technology (SARChI) help me to improve my laboratory skills.
All my gratitude to my special supervisor Prof. U.L. Opara for accepting me as his student, to
Dr O. A. Fawole, my cosupervisor who had been helping me throughout my research journey.
Special thanks go to my family, dad and mom for their awesome support and encouragement
and once again to SHARE for the great opportunity. I am deeply indebted.