A Trustee’s path to Ashesi
March 19, 2012, 5:01 pm
Filed under: 10th Anniversary

By Kristi Helgeson, Ashesi University Foundation trustee, donor and capital campaign volunteer.

Giving to a charitable organization is a rather personal matter.  My journey to Ashesi began in a home with a simple, small-town American family’s humanitarian focus.  At certain times of the year, our church handed out symbolic paper rice bowls that as a young child I filled with small coins at mealtime, a reminder of real human needs unmet on the other side of the world.  So as an adult, it’s not surprising that my soul searched for some way to contribute to the real world needs around me.  Serendipitously, I was introduced to Ashesi.  The Ashesi model of engaging students, empowering them with critical thinking skills, expecting excellence and ethical behavior, and valuing African-led initiatives is making a tangible difference in Africa, everyday.  Ashesi alums are teaching elementary and secondary students these same critical thinking skills, and they are thriving.  Ashesi alums are transforming the rules of economic engagement, stimulating opportunities for micro-business.  Ashesi alums are innovating technologies that will spark African societies to more fully engage in the global marketplace and to solve real human challenges at home.  Ashesi is keeping the best and brightest young Africans in Africa, and they are leading the charge, sharing their ideas and innovations with the rest of the world for its benefit.  Congratulations Ashesi on this milestone!  You should be proud of the lasting change you are driving for a new Africa!

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