His eyes misted by tears of joy, he sat in what my good friend, Abdul Hayi Moomen of GTV, would describe as a flying bird.
That particular flying bird christened KLM which set off from the Kotoka International Airport, in Accra, to Amsterdam was but on a transit. The young man in the plane was heading to the United States. So,from Amsterdam, it was Delta Airlines to New York and from New York, still in the comfort of Delta, the next stop was Philadelphia.
Here, a van picked him and his other colleagues to their destination proper – University of Delaware -, the hope he nurtured from Sunyani was now a reality to him.
Meet Korang Gyamfi Isaac, a Sunyani-based trained teacher who is currently partaking in the 2016 Mandela Washington Fellowship in the United States. He is spending six weeks with University of Delaware for an academic exercise after which he, together with other fellows, will meet President Obama in Washington, DC.
The much awaited meeting with Obama will take place from 1st to 3rd August, 2016. Already, the special treatment Isaac has received in America and the expectation to meet the world’s most powerful man sends him crazy.
“I never thought I could reach this level [in my life]. Starting my teaching career as a headmaster in a small village somewhere in the Brong Ahafo region, later moved to Sunyani on transfer and now spending weeks in America in a luxurious-comfort all I can say is ‘EbeZina,” says Isaac.
Had it not been through a WhatsApp chat that I had this conversation with Isaac, I am sure I would have had my voice recorder soaked in his tears.
“I guess you are not shedding tears?” I asked.
“Solo, …” Isaac spent seconds before typing a response.
“Hi,” I reached out to Isaac again.
“I just can’t believe I am in America not to talk of meeting Obama,” said Isaac.
It may seem to you that there could possibly be a human worship here in Isaac’s expectation to meet Obama. So it seems to you, right? Well, I only see it as that moment in one’s life when one is offered the opportunity some prominent people may not even have.
Isaac says he taught as a teacher at a small village in Brong Ahafo and did not expect to have this offer in life. However, the little things he did in his teaching days that many of us will overlook paved way for his success today.
When it was announced that he had been selected from the thousands of applicants across Africa to be part of the Fellowship, the US Embassy Ghana had something interesting to write about him.
“He spent four years as a head teacher in a deprived community where teachers had refused posting to. Isaac was able to use his time, talent and treasure to bring back a collapsed school on its feet for pupils to have access to education.”
I am sure when Isaac helped to strengthen the school he was posted to teach, it never occurred to him it would later pave way for him somewhere. The Mandela Fellowship celebrates young African leaders who are positively making change at wherever they find themselves and Isaac’s ‘change’ got him selected.
Completing his secondary education at the now Sunyani Senior High School in 2004, Isaac pursued his studies at the Berekum College of Education where he had a diploma in Basic Education.
Poised to climb the ladder of education, he further climbed high for Bachelor of Education in Basic Education from the University of Education, Winneba and a Master of Education in Special Education from the same University of Education, Winneba.
Among the 41 Ghanaians attending the Mandela Fellowship is another person I have known since 2003. Meet another young man whose determination in life is taking him to places. He is Bernard Oduro Takyi who was popularly known as Half Nagger at the Sunyani Senior High School.
Whenever Sunyani Senior High School meets any other school for a debate and Half Nagger was on his feet to be part of our school’s team, it meant that victory was ours.
Completing SHS in 2005, Bernard graduated from the University of Ghana and has become a qualified Member of the Chartered Insurance Institute, UK. He is also an Associate Member of the Association of Certified Chartered Economists, USA and he founded “Omanbapa Ghana Ltd.”
Bernard’s “Omanbapa is an award-wining Agribusiness positioned to redefine and modernize the sale of farm products in Ghana through unique branding, secure packing and efficient door-to-door sales,” wrote the US Embassy Ghana on its Facebook wall.
He has also founded CEEP Educational Consult and Help Disabled Ghana. I am not surprised looking at the tall list of Bernard’s achievements. He, like Isaac, is one kind of a young man who will not let small chance pass him by without taking a good advantage of it.
The intriguing stories of Isaac and Bernard and the rest of the thousands of their other fellows make me ask myself one question. If not now, then when?
For sure, you and I can also do marvelous things with our lives and get recognized in one way or the other. However, it takes our ability to seize today to sow the seeds we would want to harvest its fruits tomorrow. So, let’s wake up and chase our dreams now!
By Solomon Mensah/3FM/3news.com
The writer is a broadcast journalist with 3FM 92.7. Views expressed here remain his opinion and does not reflect that of his media organization.
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