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Annual ASC Symposium

Africa: The spirit of Union in Diversity

The African Students Community (ASC) - Groningen in collaboration with a variety of benefactors and committees organizes the biggest educational event of the academic year- the ASC Symposium on African matters.

Date: 12th April 2018;
Time: 11:00 – 17:00;
Venue: Offerhauszaal, Academy Building, RUG

Guest Speakers:                
To be announced soon


More information:
Please contact the organizer by email at (subject: ASC Symposium)

Partners and Sponsors:
University of Groningen, Hanze University of Applied Sciences and GSG

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The African Students Community (ASC) of the University of Groningen held their Annual Symposium on the 11th of May 2018 at the Academy Building of the University and hosted 75 participants including students of RUG, interested residents of Groningen as well as visitors from other cities of the NL. The symposium was graced by the presence of the Ms Doris Brese – the deputy ambassador of Ghana to the Netherlands and Mr. Herbert Ndahiro – the first secretary of Rwanda to the Netherlands.

The symposium was themed “Africa Beyond Aid. Finding Balance after Independence”. The theme of the symposium was inspired by the speech of the president of Ghana, Mr. Nana Akufo-Addo, in 2017, in front of the French president, emphasizing that Africa has to change its policies regarding Western aid, and that it is time for the African nations to develop themselves.

The symposium began at 11:30 am with an opening speech By Dutch politician Ms. Amma Asante who talked about the role of the African Diaspora in the development of their countries of origin as opposed to developmental aid.

The Science & Innovation subtheme was represented by two speakers; Mr Robinson Esialimba from the African Innovation Foundation in Geneva who spoke about reimagining Africa’s Brain Drain into a net brain gain by leveraging connectedness to spur innovation in Africa and Ms. Julia Healy a PhD candidate at RUG who enlightened the audience on Astronomy in a developing Africa.

After a quick lunch break, it was time for the Politics & Economics Sub theme, which hosted a Panel discussion on the topic of ‘’The way forward for Africa’s Development; Intracontinental cooperation or new donors from the global south?’’ by four panellists; Ms. Kesa, Ms. Philomena and Ms Luckystar from the European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM) and Mr. Nauta from the University of Maastricht. The discussion was moderated by Dr. Joram Tarusarira from the University of Groningen.

The panel discussion was followed by a coffee/tea break where the discussions and questions continued. Furthermore; the Arts & Culture subtheme was addressed by Mr Vamba Sherif, a writer who spoke about African Narratives Post Aid and Mr. Eric Meinema, a PhD candidate at Utrecht University who discussed whether the Giriama traditionalism in Kenya is a religion.

The symposium ended at 5:30 pm by a closing speech from writer Mr. Babah Tarawally who discussed how the movie Black Panther reminds us why Pan African unity is important.

Through this symposium the ASC managed to portray how the richness of African resources, of African intellect and ingenuity in the sciences, politics and economics, as well as the arts and culture are able to make the continent move forward into a brighter future, one in which Africa can be viewed beyond western aid and instead as a continent that others can aspire to. The conversation on how the African continent can stand on its two feet was initiated!

(Written by: Zainab Karim - Alimohamed, Symposium organising committee)

Partners and Sponsors
Partners and Sponsors
Last modified:15 November 2018 8.16 p.m.