Every year, The MasterCard Foundation Scholars program welcomes new undergraduates and graduates from sub-Saharan Africa to Michigan State University's campus. These Scholars have demonstrated academic talent and have a personal commitment to give back to their countries.
Biography: Violet is an graduate studying public policy.
Biography: Talitha Pam is a Nigerian graduate student in the department of Community Sustainability at MSU. Over the years Talitha has been involved in a variety of projects with various development organizations including A Rocha, Tearfund and World Renew. Four years ago she co-founded an organization called Eden Creation Care Initiative that primarily focuses on conservation and environmental awareness with communities. Upon completion of her degree Talitha plans to continue work with Eden and other development organizations. She desires to develop the expertise to critically analyze the multifaceted issues of poverty, economic livelihood, food security and resource management in Nigeria. This knowledge will help her develop and implement successful community intervention programs. It will also enable her to consult and give management support to Nigerian government parastatals involved in sustainable development. Long term goals for Talitha include being involved in academia to provide guidance and instructions for future generations committed to community sustainability. Talitha has a deep sense of stewardship for the environment and has coordinated tree planting campaigns and community clean up exercises to create awareness on environmental care and sustainability. She is committed to the actualization of a better earth, which she believes is attainable, especially if we all take individual responsibility.
Biography: Eustace is an undergraduate studying kinesiology.
Biography: Bevertone is an undergraduate scholar pursuing a double major in Comparative Cultures and Politics and International Relations with a minor in Muslim studies. He values the concepts of education and setting a foundation for the accessibility of sustainable socioeconomic and environmental change for the youth. As a result, he has been involved in various community and service projects in his country. His ambitions include the hope to enrich the quality of life, promote patriotism, welfare and strengthen unity amongst our local and global community thus building on the basis of humanity and compassion. To dissolve the counterproductive walls of isolation within our society; the more cooperation within a society, the greater the advancement of that society as a whole and the individual through development in all aspects: Access to information and technology, cultural awareness and integration, an end to inequality, and overall wellbeing of all citizens. Today, to be a citizen of the world is to be open-minded and empathetic toward all cultures, nations, and beliefs, a concept that is now almost a standard and is highly beneficial to the human mind.
Biography: Ebrima Camara is and undergraduate student majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Growing up from an extended family where the odds of a member being a university student is hardly imagined, Ebrima has not only become a first-generation student at Michigan State University but also a Scholar who wants to fulfill the dream of a generation. While in his country, he strived to impact lives at different social grounds, at high school amongst other societies, he served as the social secretary of the student’s welfare association, that helps to provide financial support to some underprivileged students. Immediately after high school graduation, Ebrima was employed at the Medical Research Council Unit-The Gambia, as a trainee laboratory technician under the Bio bank department where he later became a laboratory technician. Ebrima has interest in innovative health-care, he plans to build a reliable and fortified healthcare system that can cope with the challenges of the the twenty first century, he said :"Health in The Gambia like most African countries is growing admirably; however, low healthcare innovations to cope with disease outbreaks have left many in despair about the unfolding future. The concern over a sophisticated healthcare system that is worth trusting with beastly ailments like Ebola has overwhelmed my thinking and with daily experience of the hardship faced by people in my country only to see a tactful and compassionate Doctor at the Medical Research Council Unit-The Gambia, sets me into sheer waves of commitment and motivation -I am determined to be the change to a more sophisticated healthcare system that will instill the hope of a brighter future into the lives of people not only in my country but humanity as a whole."
Biography: Derrick Asante Dwamena is an undergraduate student majoring in Human Biology. Prior to coming to MSU, Derrick started an epilepsy awareness campaign, founded a youth development program called Mentoring the Next Generation and co-founded a charity organization that donates bi-annually to local charities. He believes that his pursuit of higher education in MSU will grant him opportunities and the kind of networks that will aid him is developing those startups back home to their fullest potential. With regards to his major, he intends to make health care on the continent more accessible and affordable to all people no their financial standing.
Biography: Naomi Kamitha is an undergraduate student in MSU majoring in Women and Gender Studies. Before joining MSU, Naomi chaired and engaged in clubs, was a member of her school's student council for three years, interned as a cashier with Equity Bank, volunteered with Equity African Leaders Program to mentor students applying to study abroad, was a volunteer mentor with the Wings to Fly Program in Kenya and was actively involved in Dandelion Kenya(a girls' rights activist program in Kenya). Naomi is passionate about working with young people and women in Africa to pursue gender equality in the very patriarchal society. She also advocates against Sexual Violence. Naomi is currently engaged in service learning at the Refugee Development Centre in Lansing as a tutor and hopes to continue working with the minority in communities in pursuit of their empowerment.
Biography: Samuel is an undergraduate student majoring in computer science and engineering. He believes in the influenced of technology in solving world problems such as unemployment and poverty. Samuel has been actively serving the community through volunteering in non-profit organizations that helps underprivileged kids access education, tutoring students, and advocating for peaceful co-existence and unity in his country, which is experiencing political turmoils, through educating young people ways of promoting peace and tribal understanding. He also has working experience in business management and customer services.
Biography: Joseph M'po Yeti is an undergraduate student majoring in Computer Science. Prior to MSU, he attended the African Leadership Academy, where he worked as Chief Executive Officer of Footprints Ltd, a student-run enterprise that aims at providing high quality branded merchandise to students and guests. Besides, Joseph was the Captain of the soccer team and served in the Student Government as a House Captain. Passionate about education and technology, Joseph wants to create a non-profit organization in his home country to provide access to primary education and new technologies in rural areas because he believes that technology tremendously improve lives and education is the most powerful weapon against poverty.
Biography: Gigi Ngcobo is an undergraduate majoring in media and information with a concentration in production and film. With her degree she aims to succeed the likes of Oprah Winfrey and establish a production house in South Africa. Its aim will be to ensure that African news is accurately investigated, put at forefront and educates citizens. Prior to attending MSU she graduated from African Leadership Academy. There she completed her A-Levels whilst working as a presenter on two different TV shows that tackled mental illness as a growing pandemic in South Africa. She embodies curiosity and exudes charisma, her biggest strength is her authenticity.