Patrick Awuah Jr.

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Patrick Awuah Jr.
Born 1965
Nationality Ghanaian
Citizenship Ghana
Known for Ashesi University
Title Dr.
Spouse(s) Rebecca Awuah
Awards MacArthur fellowship

Patrick Awuah Jr. (born 1965) is a Ghanaian engineer, educator, and entrepreneur. Awuah established Ashesi University in 2002. Patrick has won many awards as an individual and as the founder of Ashesi University. Some of them include the highest honour possible in Ghana, The Order of the Volta (2007), John. P. McNulty Prize (2009), Ghana’s 8th Most Respected CEO (2010), 50 Greatest Leaders in 2015 (Fortune Magazine 2015), MacArthur Fellowship (2015), Wise Prize for Education (2017).


Patrick grew up in Accra, Ghana. He moved to the U.S. in 1985 to attend Swarthmore College with a full scholarship. He earned bachelor's degrees in Engineering and Economics, graduating in 1989. Following graduation, Awuah worked as a software engineer and program manager for Microsoft from 1989 to 1997. At Microsoft, he met his future wife, software testing engineer Rebecca Awuah.[1]

In 1997, Patrick Awuah left Microsoft with the goal of returning to Ghana to educate the next generation of African leaders.[2][3] He enrolled at the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley, focusing his work on preparing a business plan for Ashesi. Awuah, Nina Marini, and other graduate students from Berkeley went to Ghana to do a feasibility study for opening a private university there. Awuah graduated with his MBA in 1999. That same year, he moved back to Ghana with his family to found Ashesi University.[4][5][6][7]

Ashesi welcomed its first class of students in 2002. Since that time, its bachelor's programs have expanded to include, "Business Administration, Management Information Systems, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering and Mechanical Engineering."[8] Awuah continues to serve as the president of Ashesi University.

Achievements and awards[edit]

Patrick Awuah established Ashesi University in 2002.[9][better source needed] Former president of Ghana, John Kufuor presented Patrick Awuah the Order of the Volta Award, one of the highest in the land, to recognize his immense contribution to tertiary education in Ghana in 2008.[10] In 2010, Patrick was awarded 87th most creative business person by Fast Company, New York[11] and then was awarded 4th most respected CEO in Ghana. In 2014, he received The Elise and Walter A. Haas International Award, which honors UC Berkeley alumnus/a with distinguished records of service to their native country.[12] In the same year he was named best social entrepreneur by the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship.[13] In 2015, Patrick was listed by Fortune as number 40 in world’s 50 greatest leaders[14] and was awarded MacArthur Fellow, known to many as the ‘genius grant’, an award given to 24 people who are shedding light to the world, and improving it in imaginative ways.[15] In 2017, Patrick was awarded the prestigious World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE) prize, a major global education award.[16]

See Also[edit]


External video
Education Entrepreneur Patrick Awuah, 2015 MacArthur Fellow, 3:35, MacArthur Foundation[17]
Patrick Awuah: How to educate leaders? Liberal arts, 17:26, TED Talks[7]
  1. ^ Maguire, Ken (January 2010). "A New Model of Leadership for Africa". Swarthmore College Bulletin.
  2. ^ "Building a University, and Hope, in Ghana". Retrieved 2015-09-30.
  3. ^ "Setting Up Ghana's First Liberal Arts College Makes Him A 'Genius'". Retrieved 2017-06-22.
  4. ^ "History :Ashesi University Foundation". Retrieved 2015-09-30.
  5. ^ "List: MacArthur Foundation 'genius grant' recipients, 2015". San Diego Mercury News. Associated Press. 29 September 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  6. ^ Carpenter, John. "3 Chicagoans among class of MacArthur 'geniuses'". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  7. ^ a b "Patrick Awuah: How to educate leaders? Liberal arts". TED Talks. 2007. Retrieved September 29, 2015.
  8. ^ "Ashesi University". Retrieved 2015-09-30.
  9. ^ "Ashesi University history". Retrieved 20 January 2018.
  10. ^ "Order of the Volta award". Retrieved 20 January 2018.
  11. ^ "Patrick Awuah named amongst 100 most creative people in business". Retrieved 20 January 2018.
  12. ^ "Elise and Walter A. Haas International Award".
  13. ^ "Ashesi at a glance".
  14. ^ "Worlds 50 greatest leaders".
  15. ^ "MacArthur Fellowship 2015".
  16. ^ "Ashesi University founder wins education award". Graphic Online. 15 Nov 2017. Retrieved 20 January 2018.
  17. ^ "Patrick Awuah". MacArthur Foundation. September 28, 2015. Retrieved September 29, 2015.

External links[edit]