On Monday, March 4, 2002, Ashesi began instruction. A week before that, on February 25th, approximately 30 students arrived on campus for orientation.
Orientation Week gave our first class of students an opportunity to interact with each other, and with the faculty and staff of Ashesi University College. But more importantly, Orientation Week gave our students an opportunity to begin exercising their creativity and public speaking skills, as they worked in teams to solve design problems and then presented their ideas to the rest of the class. At Ashesi, a lot of learning happens outside the classroom, and Orientation Week was a perfect example of this. The process of learning has not stopped since that first, fun week.
At another Orientation Week, one student remarked, "I'm impressed that everyone from the president to the gardener feels so enthusiastic about what they do here."
The reason for our enthusiasm is quite simple. We have a vision that we deeply believe in -- a mission to train a new generation of ethical, entrepreneurial leaders in Africa. We plan to accomplish this mission by achieving excellence in scholarship, leadership and citizenship -- by pursuing a course of instruction that enables our graduates to be technically excellent in their chosen fields, while having the breadth of vision to navigate in a changing world.
Ashesi's academic programme is grounded in a teaching philosophy called the liberal arts, which we believe is a superior way to train university students. As we began classes on March 4th, we hoped that one day our students would understand the power of the liberal arts. But their reaction to our academic programme has been beyond what we had hoped for. We have been thrilled to see the spark in our students and their parents as they have encountered this new way of learning. I have been personally touched by parents who describe how much their daughters and sons love Ashesi, and what a wonderful educational experience this is. I am awed by students who switched to Ashesi from other schools in Ghana and abroad, and who describe Ashesi's academic programme as more intense and yet more stimulating and fun than what they were doing before. I am inspired by the enthusiasm of students who have clearly found their niche here.
As you read through this website, I hope that you will gain a better sense of what Ashesi is all about. But words can only go so far. I encourage you to visit our campus, to speak with us, perhaps even sit in on a class to get a taste of academic life at Ashesi.
We are engaged on a wonderful journey here, and if after learning more about us, you find that Ashesi resonated with you, then come join us.
Patrick G. Awuah Jr.
Founder and President