- Ashesi University's founder, Mr. Patrick Awuah, has been awarded a $500,000 prize for his work with Ghana's premier private university.
- The prize was awarded to him at the Worled Innovation Summit for Education in Qatar
- Mr. Awuah left Ghanaian shores in the '80s with a scholarship and $50 dollars to his name, and returned to establish one of Ghana's most respected tertiary institutions
Mr. Patrick Awuah, founder of Ashesi University, has been awarded $500,000 for his work at Ashesi University since he founded the educational institution just over 15 years ago.
It appears that the impact of Ashesi University and its founder, Mr. Patrick Awuah, has been appreciated even beyond Ghana's borders.
According to a report published by the BBC, Mr. Patrick Awuah was award the $500,000 prize at the World Innovation Summit for Education which took place in the Gulf state of Qatar, and was in recognition for the work he's done as Ashesi University's founder.
If anything, Mr. Patrick Awuah's story is a testament that if one possess the requisite amount of will and determination, one can achieve all that one wants to achieve.
Mr. Awuah left Ghanaian shores in the 1980s with a scholarship to study in the United States and all of $50 to his name. After joining Microsoft when he left university, Mr. Awuah decided to leave his successful job with the tech giant and returned to Ghana to establish Ashesi University College in 2002.
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According to the education pioneer, his move to establish a tertiary education facility in Ghana at the time was to fill what he described as a gap in the educational system that had an "ethical mindset".
From its somewhat humble beginnings with just 30 students, Ashesi University now boast approximately 800 students and has grown to become one of - if not the most - respected tertiary education institution in Ghana with a beautiful campus situation just outside of Accra.
Speaking to the BBC after his award, Mr. Awuah expressed that the Ashesi University College alternative provided a "broader perspective" to students as opposed to the usual trends of studying for a qualification for employment.
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"We started with the idea of ethical leaders and entrepreneurial leaders." Said Mr. Awuah. According to Mr. Awuah, students of Ashesi University College were encouraged to tackle the bigger questions of concerning what kind of country they want.
He went on to say that he wants to collaborations with other tertiary institutions in order to further raise education standards in Africa.
"This is a crucial moment for Africa. Today, one out of six people on Earth lives in Africa, and this is set to rise to one in four by 2050. We urgently need to boost the education system in Africa," said Mr Awuah.
He went on to say that what he wants to achieve is a network of high quality education institutions in Africa, adding that he also wanted these institutions to be "more intentional" about grooming future leaders.
Checkout a video of Mr. Patrick Awuah speaking at a TEDtalks program 10 years ago below:
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