Scholar Defies Gender Stigma, Creates Change for African Girls

International Women's Day 2018

International Women’s Day 2018

In celebration of International Women’s Day and the African Women’s Leadership Conference at Wellesley College, Scholars explain how gender has shaped their leadership journeys. Jennifer studies Economics and Geography. She is a Scholar in the Program at the University of Ghana.

I am from a country where men are seen as gods on earth — a country where women are born and die in the kitchen. It is these ideas and this limited space carved out for women of my country that devalue the contributions women can make to the development of our country.

But imagine a country where institutional, advocated and well-developed women are made to rule the country. These women would rule and add up to the tender-heartedness of the nation. It goes like the adage: educate a man and you educate an individual, but engaging a woman means engaging the nation and generations unborn. I strongly believe it is the duty of every woman to set up and be a bringer of change and a forth bringer of generational thinkers.

I have over the years had the opportunity to serve under many major subjects. I’ve had the opportunity to serve as a president of a group, a General Secretary, a Hall representative and currently serve as the General Secretary to a body on campus as well as a member of parliament in the Junior Common Room of my university residence. As a leader, I always have plans to work towards setting a better example for the next generation.

However, there have been times where I was denied my rights in instituting change in the heart of other young women and the world at large due to the stigma attached to being a woman. Although I serve as a role model to my community and friends at large, I am at times frowned upon as a woman who wants to take the place of men.

I am a woman who is passionate about creating positive change and development.


Jennifer’s story is part of a series for International Women’s Day that is highlighting stories from Mastercard Foundation Scholars about how gender has shaped their leadership journeys. Continue reading more posts in the series here.