On the 28th of July 2022, Director of Diaspora Affairs Mr. Akwasi Awua-Ababio welcomed Professor Msia Clark, Director of Graduate Studies of the African Studies program at Howard University, Washington DC to his office at the presidency.
Prof. Clark introduced herself and explained the purpose of her visit as one of facilitating connections between the African Studies department at Howard University and several institutions across the African continent. Through these connections, she is of the expectation that support systems can be developed where students from the country could be aided by means of funding to pursue their studies at Howard. Moreover, the support systems would also include Howard students who intend to pursue research studies in Ghana.
Responding to her proposals, Mr. Ababio welcomed the potential partnership as one which fits the office of Diaspora Affairs’ mandate of reaching out and supporting the African diaspora. He emphasised the office’s support of a potential collaboration. Mr. Ababio shared with Prof. Clark that the major challenge of Ghanaian students admitted to schools in the USA was overcoming the initial hurdles to actually get there. However once in their respective schools, Ghanaian students were innovative to maintain themselves in their schools. As a means of lessening some of these challenges, Mr. Ababio suggested the University could talk to potential organisations and work places which would employ such students in fields connected to their studies thereby allowing them to make some money to take care of some expenses.
Prof. Clark welcomed the suggestion as one she would put before the Chairperson of African Studies. She also mentioned the impact of the Year of Return as one which has got Black circles in the diaspora talking and engaging with Ghana. She further extended the courtesy to have Mr. Ababio as a guest of the department of African Studies whenever he is to find himself in Washington DC.
In their company were two incoming Howard PhD students from Ghana -Amartey Rashid Laryea and Yaw Mankatah Asare.