Lebanese Community awards scholarships to 19 GIJ students
BY: Emmanuel Agorsor
The beneficiaries of the scholarship award. Standing sixth from left (front row) is Mr Maher Kheir, the Lebanese Ambassador to Ghana, Prof. Kwamena Kwansah-Aidoo (7th from left, front row), the Rector of the GIJ, and Mr Naaman Achkar (5th from left, front row), a member of the scholarship programme of the Lebanese Community in Ghana
Nineteen students of the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ) have been awarded full scholarships by the Lebanese Community in Ghana to support their education at the institute.
The Lebanese community, led by its new Ambassador to Ghana, His Excellency Maher Kheir, presented the scholarship packages to the students who excelled in their academic work during the 2017/2018 academic year.
The beneficiaries include four students in level 200, six in level 300, five in level 400 and four who are reading their master’s programme.
The scholarship package covers the cost of full tuition fees of all beneficiaries, as well as any other associated cost of their education.
The Lebanese scholarship programme was instituted by the Lebanese Community in Ghana six years ago to support tertiary education in Ghana.
It forms part of efforts by the Lebanese people in Ghana to give back to society, as well as help raise highly skilled human resource in the media and legal industries as a contribution to sustainable growth and development.
Currently, the scholarship package covers three tertiary schools - the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ), the University of Ghana and the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST).
Over the past years, the programme has helped over 100 students at all levels of tertiary education, including some dependents of martyrs of Ghana’s security services.
The new Lebanese Ambassador to Ghana, Mr Maher Kheir, expressed delight at the warm hospitality he had received since his arrival in the country earlier this year.
“I am extremely delighted to be here today. As you are aware, I recently assumed office as the Lebanese ambassador in this wonderful country Ghana and I must say I am pleased with the warm reception I have received from Ghanaians,” he said.
He pledged the continuous support of the Lebanese people in fostering stronger relations with Ghana in order to preserve the rich history both countries shared, which dates back to over a century.
“My predecessor, together with the Lebanese community, planted a seed six years ago.
It was to reward the hard work of students in the various tertiary institutions across the country.
More than 100 students from the Ghana Institute of Journalism, the University of Ghana and the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology have benefited from the programme and we will continue to do more to support brilliant students in our schools,” he added.
Touching on the scope of the scholarship, His Excellency Kheir gave an assurance that he would work to ensure that the scholarship was expanded to include other tertiary schools.
That, according to him, would allow more students in other fields to also benefit from the programme.
“We recognise the need for a solid educational foundation for every country to support development.
So we are committed to helping more students get the chance to have quality education,” he said.
He emphasised that Lebanon was committed to partnering Ghana in various sectors to promote the development of both countries.
The Rector of GIJ, Professor Kwamena Kwansah-Aidoo, thanked the Lebanese Community for consistently supporting GIJ students and promised that the school would continue to train students to strengthen Ghana’s democratic credentials.
He challenged the beneficiaries to study hard in order to continue to enjoy the scholarship, since it was renewable annually.
Juliana Odame, one of the beneficiaries, thanked the community on behalf of all beneficiaries for coming to their aid.
She gave an assurance that they would study hard to continue to enjoy the package in their academic pursuit.
The scholarship programme, since it was instituted, has successfully produced students who are contributing to Ghana’s growth in several areas.
Some of the beneficiaries who have graduated now work as journalists, lawyers, banking executives, public relations practitioners, among others.