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KNUST student shortlisted among 50 finalists for $100.000 CHEGG.ORG Global Prize

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Mathias Charles Yabe, a 22-year-old student of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology has been named to the top 50 shortlist for the Chegg.org Global Student Prize 2022. Following his nomination, Mathias stands a chance to win $100,000 which is awarded annually to a student who has had significant positive impact on learning, the lives of their peers, and society at large.

KNUST’s Mathias Charles Yabe

Out of nearly 7,000 nominations and submissions from 150 different countries, the multi-award-winning, internationally recognized social entrepreneur, Mathias Charles Yabe was chosen.

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Last year, the Varkey Foundation and Chegg.org collaborated to introduce the annual Global Student Prize, a sibling prize to its $1 million Global Teacher Prize. It was founded to offer a new solid platform that highlights the work of exceptional students around the globe who, collectively, are transforming our world for the better. All students at least 16 years old and registered in an academic institution or training and skills program are eligible to win the prize. The reward is also open to students taking online courses and part-time students.

Internationally renowned social entrepreneur Mathias Charles Yabe has made it his life’s work to develop resilient food systems and implement climate-smart solutions in local communities across Africa.

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To fulfill this aim, Mathias co-founded and serves as CEO of AkoFresh, an AgriTech firm that provides smallholder farmers with sustainable crop preservation services. This helps to combat the problem of post-harvest losses and ensures dependable food systems. Reduced post-harvest losses, reduced poverty, and improved nutrition are all results of AkoFresh.

The perishable crop shelf life of Mathias’ invention for AkoFresh is extended from five days to 21 days by a mobile solar-powered cold storage preservation technology. This innovation aids farmers in storing perishable crops over five times longer than their shelf life in ambient temperatures, which lowers losses by 50%. Since the solution is entirely powered by solar energy, it is less expensive, may be used in rural regions, and has a more negligible environmental impact.

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Again, some 250 deaf high school students’ lives were immediately impacted when Mathias led the way in creating a disability-friendly online learning environment for hearing-impaired pupils to study during school closures.

Chegg’s CEO, Dan Rosensweig, stated that since the Global Student Prize’s debut the previous year, “great students from all around the world have had the chance to tell their stories, engage with one another, and connect with influencers in education and beyond.” Students like Mathias deserve to have their stories published, and their voices heard now more than ever. After all, we need to tap into their dreams, insights, and creativity to address the enormous and urgent difficulties our world faces.

“This year’s finalists have had a significant influence on a variety of issues, including the environment, equality and justice, health and well-being, education, and skills development, as well as reducing poverty and empowering young people. I’m looking forward to seeing how this year’s outstanding changemakers use this venue to amp up their voices and improve even more lives.

The Varkey Foundation’s founder, Sunny Varkey, sent her sincere congratulations to Mathias. His experience is a living example of education’s critical role in ensuring a better future for all of us. It holds the solution to all of humanity’s biggest problems, including war and conflict, climate change, and rising inequality. As time passes to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, it is more important than ever to prioritize education so we can face the future confidently.”

Mattias Exceptional Run

Mathis has been globally recognized for his work. In 2019 he was selected as a Millennium Fellow, a global program hosted by the United Nations Academic Impact and MCN. This program convenes, challenges, and celebrates bold student leadership advancing the Sustainable Development Goals on campuses and communities. Last year, he received the Community Prize award from The Mills Fabrica and was awarded First Prize at the 2022 Young Global Changers Recoupling Award at the Global Solutions Summit in Berlin.

Previous Award

Jeremiah Thoronka, a student from Sierra Leone, won the award the previous year. He founded a start-up, Optim Energy, that converts vibrations from traffic and pedestrian footfall on roadways into an electric current. The start-up delivered free electricity to 150 houses totaling over 1,500 people with just two devices, and 15 schools with more than 9,000 students enrolled.

In August of this year, it’s anticipated that the Global Student Prize’s top 10 finalists will be revealed. The Global Student Prize Academy, made up of well-known people, will select the winner from the top 10 finalists, who will be announced later in the year.

If a student was nominated, the individual doing the nomination was asked to post a brief justification online. An email encouraging the student to apply for the award was then issued to the nominee. English, Mandarin, Arabic, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Russian were all acceptable languages for applications.

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