It is a whole different thing having people in your circles support the work you are passionate about. Perpetual is a close friend to our team and it gives us great pleasure to share her STEM journey with the world.
Hi Perpetual, thank you for joining us today. This is a good time to catch up, haha
Hi Winnie. I am happy for us to be working together on this. Look at us!
Briefly walk us through your journey from childhood to where you are now
I started my basic through to Junior High School education at Just Love Preparatory and then went to Aggrey Memorial AME Zion Secondary where I had my second cycle of Education. I pursued my tertiary education at the University for Development Studies where I obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Financial Mathematics. After my tertiary education, I got enrolled at the African Institute for Mathematical Science (AIMS) in Ghana, where I obtained a Master’s degree in Mathematical Science, and went further to Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) for an MPhil and a Ph.D., both in Applied Mathematics.
At what point did you decide to make a career out of Mathematics?
AIMS made me realize all the various career paths I could take as an African woman in Mathematics. The experience there made me feel comfortable to continue pursuing my passion in the STEM world.
What are some of the challenges you have faced while on this journey?
Being a female studying a male-dominated course (Mathematics) is a great challenge! Climbing up the ladder is seen by people as challenging the males in that area. Giving your opinion on issues relating to your line of work is welcome with great opposition. As Dom Famularo will put it; Making yourself better will take commitment, time, and perseverance. For the most growth, you must take the path of most resistance.
How have you been inspired to move on amidst these challenges?
I am greatly inspired by hard work and determination. As the firstborn child of a low-income home, I have always made great sacrifices and choices for my younger siblings who always looked up to me. Giving up was never a part of my dictionary since it was my family’s rule not to quit no matter what. Looking back, I can say that not giving up on my dreams of becoming a renowned Mathematician has made me overcome obstacles I never thought I would have. I must also say that my experiences in AIMS made me more confident in believing that I can do anything and achieve anything with determination and focus.
Let’s talk about your life achievements and awards
I have won some scholarships and grants; I was awarded the Official Development Assistance (ODA) Research Seed Fund from the University of Liverpool in 2018, I won the first position in oral presentations by the Ghana Science Association in 2016, I was also a recipient of the AIMS Alumni Small Research Grant (AASRG) in collaboration with IDRC in 2015, and lastly the AIMS Scholarship in 2012.
Who is Perpetual outside work?
Outside work I love to cook, watch movies, spend time with family and friends and go on vacations.
What is your word of encouragement for a young girl in STEM?
To every young girl in STEM, believe in God and yourself, be focused and be determined, and above all work hard to achieve your dreams. Never stop dreaming because in you lies greatness that the world awaits.
Thank you, Perpetual, for taking the time to share your journey through us. Congratulations upon the milestones. We wish you more success in life and your career.