Watch: Patrick Awuah '89, Founder and President of Ashesi University, Awarded 2009 John P. McNulty Prize
by Michael Lott
From left: Vice President for College and Community Relations Maurice Eldridge, Patrick Awuah '89, President Rebecca Chopp
Patrick Awuah '89 and Ashesi University in Accra, Ghana have been awarded the John P. McNulty Prize for Ashesi's "commitment to civics and ethics." Awuah founded the university in 2002. While Ashesi's degree offerings are in Business, Computer Science, and Management Information Systems, the educational program is at its core based upon the liberal arts. The award site features a video about the university.
According to Awuah, the educational program is meant to "train the next generation of leaders in [Ghana]. Not just political leaders, but business leaders and social leaders." Leadership courses are part of curriculum, and participation in community service projects are required for graduation. A 2004 honorary degree recipient from Swarthmore, Awuah said in his address that the university is an attempt to create an institution like Swarthmore in Ghana, one that leaves "a gift to the world in the form of enlightened and committed people who have the wherewithal to chart a better course for the future." Awuah was also invited to speak at the 2007 TED conference.
The McNulty Prize is awarded by the Aspen Institute to recognize the best of the leadership projects undertaken by the Fellows of the Aspen Global Leadership Network. It carries a $100,000 award over two years to support the project. Selection is made by an international jury; this year, the jury included Madeleine Albright and Bill Gates, Sr. more