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Shaping Tomorrow’s Agricultural Leaders: The Impact of EDF Scholarships

The Eric Danquah Foundation (EDF) is making a noticeable difference in the lives of students in Ghana, especially with its Highflyers in Plant Breeding and Genetics Programme.

Founded by Professor Eric Yirenkyi Danquah from the West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement, EDF focuses on preparing young people for the future in sustainable agriculture.

A statement issued by EDF, copied to the Ghana News Agency said the beneficiaries of EDF’s Flagship programme, Highflyers in Plant Breeding and Genetics Programme attest to the pivotal role EDF had played in shaping their academic journey.

Mr Bright Fiakeye, a scholarship recipient, talks about the full support EDF gave him – covering his school fees, housing, and providing a laptop.

This support, combined with mentorship from EDF, opened new doors for him in both academics and future career paths.

Bright, who is now pursuing postgraduate studies at the University of Cambridge, credits EDF for guiding him through the application process, covering costs for Eng
lish proficiency tests, and helping him get recommendations.

This comprehensive support was key to his admission to the University of Cambridge.

EDF’s influence goes beyond just helping students excel academically in Ghana.

It has also reignited interest in agriculture and opened up opportunities for study abroad.

Mr Salaudeen Bandanaa, another EDF scholar, shares how the foundation’s mentorship clarified his career goals.

‘Initially uncertain about my passion for agriculture, witnessing the remarkable achievements of Prof Eric Danquah, the foundation’s director motivated and propelled me for academic excellence ‘he revealed.

Now studying for an MSc in Global Plant Health at the University of East Anglia, UK, and working at the Sainsbury Laboratory,

Mr Bandanaa attributes his securing of the David Sainsbury international scholarship to both his hard work and the support from EDF.

Madam Sandra Awuradwoa Krowa Akrofi, also supported by EDF, highlights the foundation’s role in her academic path.

The Fou
ndation not only provided financial support but also offered invaluable mentorship for her educational journey.

The Foundation also covered the cost of the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) of which she achieved exceptional scores.

She is now pursuing an MPhil in Crop Science at the University of Ghana. Her research is supported by mentors from EDF.

Looking ahead, Madam Akrofi aspires to contribute significantly to the global battle for food and nutrition security.

‘I am actively seeking a PhD position with a keen interest in utilizing biotechnology tools to enhance the abiotic tolerance and biofortification of orphan crops,’ she added.

The Eric Danquah Foundation is proving to be a key player in developing future agricultural leaders in Ghana, offering not just financial support but also mentorship and opportunities for international education.

The EDF was announced in the acceptance speech by the honoree during the award ceremony at Nanjing Agricultural University, China, upon rece
iving the Global Confederation of Higher Education Associations for Agricultural and Life Sciences (GCHERA) World Agriculture Prize on October 28, 2018.

The foundation was officially registered and authorized to begin business operations in February 2020.

The founder, the 2022 Africa Food Prize Laureate, also founded the West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement (WACCI) based at the University of Ghana in 2007.

Source: Ghana News Agency