On 14 July 2023, the Commonwealth Scholars and Fellows Alumni Ghana (CoSFAG) delivered a seminar for final year students at the Faculty of Social Sciences, KNUST on preparing for life after school. The seminar aimed to share tips and guidance to support students in their transition into post-graduation life and forms part of CoSFAG’s commitment to support young people in Ghana. Over 80 students attended the session with three Commonwealth Alumni representing CoSFAG in person- Dr John Boulard Forkuor (2010 Shared Scholar), Dr Albert Arhin (2009 Shared Scholar) and Dr Paul Otchere- and others submitting video messages for attendees.  

Looking to the future 

The seminar opened with remarks from Dr John Boulard Forkuor. He explained CoSFAG’s commitment to supporting young people through seminars and mentorship opportunities and outlined how to make the most of the seminar.  

Dr Paul Otchere, a senior lecturer at the School of Public Health at KNUST, introduced the students to various educational opportunities for social science graduates. In his session, Dr Otchere stressed that students should not limit their options to only social sciences and humanities programs or employment but look at other sectors and fields where their knowledge and skills can be applied. He used his own background as a social sciences undergraduate now teaching in public health as an example of how participants’ skills and training is transferable.  

Rabi Darko from the KNUST Counseling Center discussed strategies for managing stress, frustrations, and disappointment after graduation. He acknowledged that students may experience anxieties following the completion of their studies in seeking employment and further study opportunities, and highlighted the importance of continuing to develop their hard and soft skills to build their personal and professional value.  

This session was following by a discussion on life planning, led by Selina Angmor, Director of the KNUST Career Services Center. She emphasised the importance of setting clear goals and identifying the necessary skills needed to achieve these, and highlighted the effective utilisation of learned lessons, theories, and socialised morals and ethics. She also shared how participants can translate the skills and acknowledge acquired through their studies to job requirements and specifications. 

Seeking new opportunities  

Throughout the seminar participants had the opportunity to ask questions, and speakers expressed their willingness to provide mentorship to participants outside of the session. 

The event closed with a final presentation from Dr Albert Arhin, the General Secretary of CoSFAG. Dr Arhin spoke about the process of searching for schools and applying for scholarships, drawing on his personal experiences as a Commonwealth Scholar.  

The meeting concluded with a networking session, allowing participants to interact with the guest speakers and fellow attendees. The students showed great appreciation for the session and have expressed an interest in attending further deep dive sessions on the topic areas. CoSFAG will continue to work with university services and students at KNUST to develop further support and opportunities.