Ashesi announces commitment to gender balance in engineering program at Clinton Global Initiative

CGI2014_Ashesi_Commitment_TwitterSeattle, WA— September 23, 2014 — At the 2014 Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Annual Meeting in New York today, Patrick Awuah, Founder and President of Ashesi University, announced a new Commitment to Action: to add a new engineering major at Ashesi, with a goal of recruiting equal numbers of outstanding African women and men to this innovative program. Watch the video below (tune in to the 59:22 min. mark to hear Patrick’s address).

Ashesi University aims to spark a renaissance in Africa by educating a new generation of ethical, entrepreneurial leaders. Ashesi’s curriculum combines a liberal arts core, with a 4-year focus on leadership, innovation and community service, with current majors in business, computer science, and management information systems. Graduates have a 100% placement rate, with 95% choosing to stay in Africa to work for progress. Ashesi’s groundbreaking new engineering major, with an emphasis on design, problem solving, and entrepreneurship, will help redefine engineering education in Africa and drive the important innovations that Africa needs. The program will educate and prepare young women and men to develop engineering solutions that will address some of Africa’s pressing problems.

Women have traditionally been underrepresented in the field of engineering. According to a 2011 study published by the American Society for Engineering Education, females accounted for 18.4% of bachelor’s degrees in engineering in the United States. Gender parity will be a central focus for the engineering program. In order to achieve this ambitious goal, Ashesi will: design a curriculum intentionally aimed at including the perspective of women; implement summer high school programs that inspire girls to pursue careers in science and engineering; fund more scholarships for women; and provide the mentorship and counseling necessary to help women succeed in college and in their careers. Over the first four years, Ashesi will enroll 300 students to the program, half of whom will be women, and will reach over 1,040 high school girls through summer programs and recruitment efforts.

Patrick Awuah comments, “Our goal is about inclusion, but perhaps more importantly, it is about ensuring that the perspectives of African women guide the engineering solutions to some of Africa’s greatest challenges. Achieving gender balance in engineering education would be exceptional and would represent leadership not only in Africa, but also globally.”

Ashesi’s success to date has been made possible by the investment of visionary donors and partners who have contributed towards Ashesi’s growth. As Ashesi continues to expand, by adding a new major in engineering, increasing its student body, and providing more scholarships for women and students in need, the support of donors and partners is all the more crucial. To learn about ways to get involved, please contact the Ashesi University Foundation team in Seattle or the University in Ghana.

About the Clinton Global Initiative
Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), an initiative of the Clinton Foundation, convenes global leaders to create and implement solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. CGI Annual Meetings have brought together more than 180 heads of state, 20 Nobel Prize laureates, and hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations and NGOs, major philanthropists, and members of the media. To date, members of the CGI community have made more than 2,900 commitments, which are already improving the lives of more than 430 million people in over 180 countries.
CGI also convenes CGI America, a meeting focused on collaborative solutions to economic recovery in the United States, and CGI University (CGI U), which brings together undergraduate and graduate students to address pressing challenges in their community or around the world. For more information, visit and follow us on Twitter @ClintonGlobal and Facebook at
About Ashesi
Ashesi University is a 4-year non-profit institution in Ghana that educates a new generation of ethical, innovative, and entrepreneurial leaders in Africa. Ashesi’s pioneering curriculum combines a rigorous liberal arts core designed to foster ethics and critical thinking with in-depth, world-class majors in business, computer science, and management information systems. The Ashesi University Foundation is a US non-profit designed to raise support and awareness for Ashesi University.
To learn more about this commitment and Ashesi’s work in Africa, please contact:
Joanna Bargeron, Vice President
Ashesi University Foundation
1414 31st Ave. S. Suite 301, PMB #11
Seattle, WA 98144
Tel: (206) 545-6988 Email:
Ebenezer Gwumah, Development & External Relations
Ashesi University
1 University Ave, Berekuso
PMB CT 3, Cantonments, Accra –GHANA
Tel: +233.302.610.339 Email:

Additional coverage of Patrick Awuah at CGI:

Laureate International Universities’ interview with Patrick Awuah: Sept. 30, 2014