Last year, for the first time, Dr. Priscilla Kolibea Mante of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology whose research in treating drug-resistant epilepsy, and neurocysticercosis earned her the L’Oréal-UNESCO International Rising Talent For Women in Science award. The Ghanaian scientist was the only African awarded.
Fast forward to this year and the L’Oréal Foundation in partnership with UNESCO, has launched the 2019 edition of the Women in Science programme for women scientists in sub-Saharan Africa in Accra.
The Women in Science programme was established to increase the share of women in scientific research globally. Over the past 20 years the programme has supported and recognized accomplished women researchers and encouraged more young women to pursue careers in the sciences. So far, the Foundation has awarded almost 3,000 young women scientists through 102 international laureates, 45 national and 5 regional programmes around the world.
20 grants will be offered for the Sub-Saharan Africa region- €10 000 for PhD and €15 000 for Post-doctorate programmes respectively.
In his welcome address, the Country Manager of L’Oréal West Africa, Mr. Sekou Coulibaly said L’Oréal has been working with Ghanaian women for the past 20 years at different levels and creating jobs through the value chain.
“The women in Science programme is therefore a means of supporting women to attain the highest academic laurels in the sciences and I urge Ghanaian women scientists and doctoral students to apply for the fellowships” – Mr. Coulibaly stated.
He indicated that L’Oréal believes that this year’s fellowship will not be complete without the involvement of Ghana, hence the decision to launch the programme in Accra.
Mr. Gourouza stated that to qualify for the award of a fellowship under the programme; “an applicant must be a national of a sub Saharan African country, work in a research laboratory or institution in one of the region’s countries or be enrolled in a doctoral programmme at a University in sub-Saharan Africa or be pursuing research in a field of life sciences, physical sciences, mathematics and computer sciences”. He encouraged Ghanaian female scientists, science students and lecturers to subscribe to the programme.
The Principal Programme Officer, Natural Sciences at Ghana National Commission for UNESCO, Mr. Apollonius Osei-Akoto Asare said the Women in Science programme aligns with the mandate of UNESCO to build peace through international cooperation in Education, the Sciences and Culture. He commended L’Oréal Foundation for sustaining the programme over the past 20 years.
”We are proud to be associated with the Women in Science programme and pleased with the tremendous impact it has made on the development of female scientists globally and in Africa in particular“ – Mr Asare said.
To subscribe, interested persons can apply online- www.forwomeninscience.com. One can choose from the three programmes depending on eligibility. These are Laureates, Rising talents and Fellowship.
The event was attended by renowned Ghanaian female Scientists and female student scientists including Prof Esi Awuah the Foundation Vice-Chancellor of the University of Energy and Natural Resources, Sunyani.