General News of Friday, 15 March 2013
The overall best student at this year’s congregation at the University of Ghana, Mr Byron Owusu Ansah, remained firm and resolute and stayed focused on achieving his dream.
Mr Owusu, who studied Mathematics and Economics at the university, graduated with a first class honours with a grade point of 3.95.
Sharing his story with the Daily Graphic in Accra, he said he lost his father at the tender age of 10 when he was in primary five, and his mother, a petty trader at the Kasoa Market, found it difficult to take care of him and two other siblings.
He said in spite of all these challenges, he performed very well in the Basic Education Certificate Examination and gained admission to the Accra Academy Senior High School where he studied Business.
While in Accra Academy, things turned from bad to worse and he nearly dropped out of school when he was in form two, but for the timely intervention of a benefactor at the Accra Ridge Church.
He said he heard of a scholarship scheme being given by the church to brilliant but needy children and he applied for the scholarship after he missed an opportunity to participate in an interview when some members of the church visited the school.
It was at this point that his benefactor, Mr Peter Igie, a member of the church, took it upon himself to, singlehandedly, cater for his senior high school and university education.
He was the assistant school prefect of Accra Academy Senior High School.
When asked how he managed to pull such a feat in the face of his challenges, he said looking at his background and the support from his benefactor, he promised not to let him down and he also committed himself to the Lord, through prayers, for guidance, strength and protection.
Financial constraints prevented him from contesting any leadership position on campus, but he contributed his quota by being on the board to vet aspirants. He was also on four committees of the Mathematics Students Association, where he helped to solve problems and gained publicity for the association.
He dedicated his achievement to God, adding that he set a target for himself and he achieved it through God’s will. He thanked everyone who contributed to his success, especially, Mr Igie for singularly seeing him through his education.
On the way forward, he said, he had received two admission letters from the University of Aberdeen and the University of Warwick, all in the United Kingdom, to pursue a Master’s programme but was waiting for more offers and also looking for a scholarship.
He was selected by the University Council to deliver the valedictory speech at the congregation. He received an award from the Indian Endowment fund and the Professor Kwadwo Asenso Okyere prize.