Why Education is Important to Me, by Margaret Saanuo, WomensTrust Scholarship Recipient
My parents are from the Dagaartis tribe, a marginalized group in regard to education and wealth in the Upper West Region of Ghana. However, they migrated to the Central Region of Ghana in search of “greener pastures.” Traditionally, female education is relegated to the background. It is considered a waste to invest in their education because they will marry and have children. Instead, parents send boys to schools because of the patrimonial system of inheritance. This culture of discrimination against female education has a negative impact on the socio-economic development of women, and the society as a whole. As a result, women remain economically disadvantaged and men capitalize on this to infringe on their fundamental human rights.
Despite the tradition, my father has decided to give an equal education to my three siblings and me. He believes that the only legacy you can leave behind for your children is quality education, not the amount of wealth you have acquired. He tells me, ”If you think education is expensive you should try ignorance.” Ignorance is like a disease in Ghana, and I have set forth to change the mentality of my community, proving that, “What a man can do a woman can do equally well.” Education can transform Ghana and it is time women are acknowledged in the society in which they have been despised.
I have a strong desire to help those in need, especially children who are less fortunate. There are many children in Ghana who need someone to love and care about them, someone to look up to, who will assist them when they are in trouble. One of the ways I would like to help the children and my country as a whole is by studying medicine. I want to be the first renowned female cardiologist because the few cardiologists I know are men. My dream of being a role model will be an example to women in Ghana. In short, my experiences in life, combined with a rigorous academic education, will enable me to pursue a successful career in future.
I am highly indebted to WomensTrust and appreciate all their effort and the impact they have on my life. I will continue to make you proud in many endeavors because saying THANK YOU cannot describe what you have done for my family and me.