Class of 2016 celebrates Commencement in record-breaking style

Ashesi_Commencement_2016_Web_BannerJune 25, 2016
Ashesi celebrated its 12th graduating class at a touching ceremony held in the Cornfield Archer Courtyard on campus this weekend. Nearly 2,000 family, friends, students and alumni joined the Class of 2016 to celebrate their years of work at Ashesi, and welcome them to the Ashesi alumni community. Lucy Quist, CEO of Airtel Ghana, was guest speaker at this year’s commencement ceremony. Other guests of honor included the Deputy Minister of Education, Hon. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, the Chief of Berekuso, Nana Oteng Korankye II, representatives from the University of Cape Coast and the University of Mines and Technology, the Managing Director of Unibank Ghana, Mr. Felix Nyarko-pong, and the Head of Corporate Business at Old Mutual Ghana, Sosthenes Konutsey. 144 graduates were awarded Bachelor of Science degrees in Business Administration, Computer Science and Management Information Systems.

A New Academic Bar at Ashesi
30% of the class of 2016 graduated with academic honors, higher than any other class in Ashesi’s history. “Because you have met alumni from Ashesi’s previous classes, you must know that it is quite the feat to set a new bar for excellence at Ashesi,” said Ashesi President Dr. Awuah, congratulating the class. “This is a testament to how persistent and engaged you have all been since you first walked onto Ashesi’s campus as freshmen. On behalf of everyone, I want to say, well done Class of 2016!”

Dr. Marcia Grant

The Power of Friendships
In her opening reading, Ashesi’s retiring Provost, Dr. Marcia Grant, encouraged the class to cherish their friendships at Ashesi. “You are the most international class we are graduating from Ashesi to date,” she said. “I have a vision for Ashesi graduates in the future, armed with their Ashesi Alumni directories, flying across Africa and visiting friends in Kenya and Zimbabwe, in Nigeria and the Gambia, in Cameroon and Rwanda. And maybe meeting up in London and Paris, in Abuja and New York, in Johannesburg and Mumbai.”

Festus Emmanuel Jartu '16

The Class of 2016, A Gift To Others
In a moving speech, Class speaker Festus Emmanuel Jartu ’16, a MasterCard Foundation Scholar from the Gambia, shared the class’ story with the gathering, highlighting highs, lows and lessons learned. “At Ashesi, we don’t just graduate with degrees in MIS, Computer Science, Business Administration or Engineering,” he said. “We graduate with a mission to serve, and a mandate to give to society more than we take from it. We are not just gifted for ourselves, we are a gift to others. […] We don’t dwell on what we have been through; our struggle, the inequality, poverty or our broken environments. We are a group that carries the ambitions of scientists, engineers, business leaders, artists, teachers, entrepreneurs, and many others.”

Dr. Patrick Awuah Jr.

Channeling Fear
“Today, you get to step out into the world, having completed most of your formal education, to begin a new chapter focused on your professional impact in the world. No doubt, this is a happy and exciting day,” said Dr. Awuah, in his address to the graduating class. “But If you feel anything like I did on my commencement day, you also feel a small sense of uncertainty about the vast future that awaits you. Do not be afraid. […] The multidisciplinary education you have had here, the emphasis we’ve placed on critical analytical reasoning, and the problem solving skills you have honed here, have all prepared you for the reality of a changing world. So have courage.”

Mrs. Lucy Quist

Transforming Africa for Good
“You see between our best and worst countries on this continent the difference is not real enough,” said Lucy Quist, recently named Telecom CEO of the Year, in her keynote address. “Progress is a continent where all our children have access to a good education. Real progress means having healthcare systems that ensure the quality and preservation of life. I could go on. Yet, young people like you fill me with hope that it is possible to create change. Africa is not poor. It has more than enough resources for its people. Our poverty is a poverty of mindset. My singular message to you today is to become leaders who diligently execute big visions to transform Africa for good.”

Deputy Minister of Education Praises Ashesi
Speaking on behalf of the Minister of Education, Deputy Minister of Education, Hon. Samuel Ablakwa, congratulated Ashesi for its impressive history. “We want to place on record that the government of President Mahama, and the good people of Ghana are extremely proud of Ashesi University. Ashesi continues to break and defy many myths and many odds that have been the dominant narrative in Africa. […] It is on that note that I am delighted to announce today that the interim assessment report that we have cited from the National Accreditation Board, points to one fact. And that fact, is that before the year 2016 ends, Ashesi University is going to receive its Presidential Charter. This is a feat worth celebrating.”

Hon. Samuel Ablakwa

See all the Updates from Commencement 2016
Watch a replay of the Commencement Ceremony livestream on our Facebook page, or see all the updates on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, using the hashtags, #AshesiGrad or #Ashesi2016.

Congratulations Class of 2016!

Share this story