Ashesi welcomed faculty and staff from Arizona State University (ASU) and the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) to campus in June as part of efforts to deepen ties amongst the three institutions. Under partnerships that both Ashesi and KNUST have with ASU, faculty from the three universities have committed to collaboratively host symposiums on their campuses each year.
The goal of the commitment is to enable stronger collaboration in research, teaching and learning across the three universities; and knowledge sharing around themes central to the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Programme. The symposium at Ashesi was the last in the series of symposiums for the year.
“It was a great opportunity to work with partner universities to strengthen to learn from them, increase their capacity and also learn how we can also diversify our presentation and curriculum,” shared Tamara Webb, Director of International Education at the Center for Advanced Studies in Global Education (CASGE) at the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at ASU. “Not only did the face to face contact build incredible camaraderie, but it also gave us the space to work with and learn from each in a way we had never done before.”
Over the two days, participants engaged in a mix of sessions focusing on student engagement in the classroom, grant writing, and research publications. In line with the desire for African scholars and institutions to engage in research, the workshop allowed faculty to not only share strategies for increasing research capabilities but to also identify key relationships for research partnerships.
“Having conversations about effective ways of doing research and securing grants were useful not only for us academics but will help us supervise and guide more students into securing grants to support quality work,” shared Professor George Obeng, who teaches in the Mechanical Engineering Department at KNUST.
Director of Diversity & International Programmes for the partnership, Dr. Millicent Adjei, who also oversees the partnership with ASU, believed that the symposium was a great opportunity for the three diverse universities to share their unique perspectives.
“All three institutions are different concerning our teaching and research culture and capabilities," she explained. "This annual convening, therefore, provides a great opportunity to draw on the diverse knowledge and capabilities available within each of our institutions. It is visionary of the Mastercard Foundation to support ASU's Strengthening Institutional Linkages programme, through which we are enabling these impactful global learning opportunities for university students, faculty, and staff in Africa.”