From TED to UC Berkeley to Ghanaian CEOs, a diverse list of global and African organizations have recognized the impact of Ashesi University and Patrick Awuah, its Founder and President. See the list below.


WISE Prize for Education Laureate, 2017

Quartz Africa Innovator, 2016

MacArthur Fellow, MacArthur Foundation, 2015

World’s 50 Greatest Leaders, Fortune, 2015

Elise and Walter A. Haas International Award, UC Berkeley, 2015

Schwab Social Entrepreneur of the Year, 2014

Most Creative People in Business1000, Fast Company, 2014

Babson College, Honorary Doctor of Laws degree for outstanding entrepreneurial leadership (2013)

UC Berkeley, Haas School of Business annual Leading Through Innovation award (2012)

Ghana’s Top 10 Most Respected Organizations, and Ghana’s Top 10 Most Respected CEOs Voted by Ghanaian CEOs, organized by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and Business and Financial Times  (2012, 2010)

Millennium Excellence Award for Educational Development (2010)

Fast Company Magazine, 100 Most Creative People in Business (2010)

Microsoft Alumni Foundation Integral Fellow Award  (2009)

TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) Conference, Fellow (2009)

John P McNulty Prize, Extraordinary Young Leader (2009)

President of Ghana, Order of the Volta, (2007) President of Ghana, John Agyekum Kufuor, presented Patrick Awuah with the Order of the Volta Award in recognition of his efforts in improving tertiary education in Ghana.

World Economic Forum, Young Global Leader Nomination (2007)

Swarthmore College, Honorary Doctorate (2004)

“Ashesi fills an important need. By taking an innovative approach, the college has reached a new level of achievement and excellence, and is an example for the rest of Africa…”

– Jimmy Carter, 39th President of the US, Founder of the Carter Center

“Ashesi University in its commitment to ethics and civics is guaranteeing future generations of leaders for Ghana, Africa, and the world.”

– 2009 John P. McNulty Prize award to Ashesi founder Patrick Awuah

“There is an increasing recognition that poverty reduction, while important, will not move Africa forward on its own. Rather, Africa must be able to create and keep its own middle class. Such a middle class will provide the political, academic and business leaders who can engineer real development in Africa. It will be home-grown leadership and local talent who will finally make the difference for Africa. Financial aid can provide Africa with physical infrastructure, but it cannot provide leadership – only a local, innovative institution like Ashesi can do that. An investment in Ashesi is, therefore, an effective and leveraged investment in Africa’s future.”

 Peter Woicke, former managing director of the World Bank; former board chair, International Save the Children Foundation; board member and former board chair, Ashesi University Foundation.

“I have visited Ashesi three times, and I was overwhelmed by the enthusiasm and talent of the students. The curriculum teaches young Africans to solve problems, not just engage in rote memorization. This high-quality African university, started and run by a Ghanaian, which offers scholarships to young West Africans eager to improve their talents, deserves to attract more notice and support from Western donors.”

– William Easterly, Professor of Economics at New York University, author of several books including, The White Man’s Burden: Why the West’s Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good.

“Ashesi is an African-initiated innovation to use higher education as a vehicle to build integrity and creative problem-solving (rather than rote learning) into the next generation of African leadership.  It provides a first class education, offers special opportunities for women, and goes out of its way to include the poor.  Despite its modest size it has high visibility in Ghana and already has stimulated changes in Ghanaian higher education.  But most important, it is  powerful testament to West Africa of what an individual and institution of absolute integrity can achieve in an environment troubled by corruption.  Anyone serious about wanting African solutions to African problems should be supporting Ashesi.”

– David K. Leonard, Professorial Fellow in Governance, Institute of Development Studies (IDS), University of Sussex; Dean Emeritus, International and Area Studies, UC Berkeley; former board member and board chair, Ashesi Board of Trustees.

“Our family’s philanthropy has been guided by the principle of promoting self-reliance. Societies, families and individuals succeed when their creativity, energy and drive are unleashed and empowered. This is why Ashesi is not just a good idea, but an essential piece of the equation.”

– Mike Murray, Co-Founder, Unitus, an award-winning microfinance foundation; Microsoft Senior Executive (retired); former board member, Ashesi University Foundation.

“It is a relief that there’s an institution like yours that focuses on creating the right leaders for our time. I’m very optimistic about your generation.”

– Prof. Frits Bolkestein, Former European Commissioner, currently the president of the Telders Foundation, a think-tank in the Netherlands. (addressing Ashesi students in ’08)

“Ashesi graduates and student interns are fantastic. They are switched on and way ahead of their peers.”

– Ms. Hagan, L’aine Services, a nationwide human resource development firm in Ghana.

“At Goldman Sachs, we continue to be impressed with the calibre of students being nurtured by Ashesi University.”

– Olivia Morley, Goldman Sachs, Division of Graduate Recruitment of Human Capital Management. Goldman Sachs has hired numerous Ashesi interns for their London office, and selected three Ashesi graduates for their 10,000 Women Initiative.

“Ashesi graduates have obtained one of the best liberal arts and computer science educations in the world. They are therefore poised to tackle the real issues of our very complex and challenging world. They can think through society’s intractable problems and solve them. We look to Ashesi’s graduates to accelerate with boldness Ghana’s journey to a middle income country. They are more than capable of straddling the complex demands of globalization.  Ashesi is molding the minds of future leaders of Ghana.”

– Ken Ofori-Atta, Executive Chairman, Databank Group, a Ghanaian firm providing ground-breaking corporate and public finance advisory services to companies in Ghana and other African countries.

“Ashesi’s presence in Africa is a strategic one because Africa is in dire need of leaders who are empathic, critical thinking and want to make a difference — the very core of the Ashesi mission.”

– Ishac Diwan, Wold Bank Country Director: Burkina Faso, Ghana, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea.

Watch video coverage of recent talks and interviews with Founder and President, Patrick Awuah, Alumni, and members of the Ashesi community.

Patrick Awuah interview with Laureate Education at CGI, September 2014

  • Hear Patrick further discuss the significance of Ashesi’s Commitment to Action at Clinton Global Initiative 2014.

Patrick Awuah’s address at the inaugural Annual AAI State of Education in Africa conference, September 2014

  • Watch Patrick’s keynote address. Hear Patrick discuss the progress of primary, secondary, tertiary, technical, and vocational education in Africa and Ashesi’s role in transforming higher education on the continent.

Patrick Awuah’s speech at Zeitgeist Americas, September 2011

  • When we bring together a range of young minds seeking solutions for our time, what inspirational insights will we discover?