Long-lasting legacy: A Profile of Mfantsiman Girls’ Grace Ansah and a 2013 NSMQ Contestant

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In 2013,Mfantsiman Girls’ SHS – Saltpond led by Grace Ansah and Adwoa Serwaa Adunyah became the second all-girls school to make an appearance at the NSMQ Grand Finale.

“I was interested in working on a wide range of issues in Ghana – energy, agriculture, and food security – and I believed that chemical engineering would give me the right skills I needed to contribute to developing lasting solutions in Ghana.”
– Grace Ansah, NSMQ 2013 Finalist, Mfantsiman Girls’ SHS

In 2013, Mfantsiman Girls’ SHS – Saltpond became the second all-girls school to make an appearance at the NSMQ Grand Finale. This feat was more impressive when put in perspective – the first time an all-girls school made an appearance was 14 years earlier when Wesley Girls High School faced off Mfantsipim School in the 1999 final. Since that achievement in 2013, no other all-girls team has made it to the finals, despite some impressive attempts in recent years.

Grace Ansah (left) and Adwoa Serwah Adunyaa of the Mfantsiman Girls 2013 team

Life After the NSMQ – College Education
At the fore of Mfantsiman Girls’ historic feat were Grace Adoley Ansah and Adwoa Serwah Adunyaa. Since leading the charismatic charge to 3rd place on the NSMQ stage, Grace has gone on to obtain a BSc in Chemical Engineering from Stanford University in the USA, and a Masters in International Education Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, also in the USA.

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At Stanford, Grace pursued a minor in Global Studies to more deeply explore her interests in Ghana and in sub-Saharan Africa. Grace’s capstone project through the minor focused on developing support systems for African undergraduate students.

Grace (3rd from right) with other Ghanaians in the Stanford class of 2019
Grace (centre) with the Harvard International Education Policy 2019/2020 cohort (not the full class)

Career Path
Grace’s career interests have gravitated towards working directly in designing and improving curricula for educational organizations that work directly with under-served populations, particularly in developing countries. She is especially interested in curricula that focus on equipping under-served populations with 21st-century skills that enable them to be successful problem solvers and creative thinkers in the current global climate.

Grace with some colleagues in Niger as part of a research project

As a result of this interest, Grace is a founding member of Smartix Education – an Education Startup Company focused on transforming education in Ghana, Africa and the world at large. Based in Kumasi, Ghana, the outfit deploys teaching aids which are more relatable to students, spark curiosity and encourage innovation. These include colourful books, an interactive app, DIY experiments & creative design projects, animated videos of concepts and African themed educational fun games and activities.

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Smartix Staff and Volunteers at Summer School, 2018

Currently, Grace is set to begin a role at the African Leadership University (ALU) in Rwanda as Faculty in their Global Challenges Department.

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7 years after making her school proud, catch up with Grace as she joins the NSMQ team for a laid-back conversation on her life beyond the quiz, particular insights she would like to share and many other fun anecdotes.

Join the Instagram Live session on Saturday the 4th of July, 2020 at 6 pm GMT via Instagram.

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Credit: nsmq.com.gh