The Adisadel Old Boys Association of North America (AOBA-NA) sponsored a six-day pilot educational training workshop titled “Innovation in Action” for five senior secondary schools in Cape Coast.
“Innovation in Action” is an after-school and extra-curricular program which engaged students from Adisadel College, Mfantsipim School, St. Augustine’s College, University Practice High School and Wesley Girls High School in a workshop based on the principles of Design Thinking.
The training took place from September 24 to September 29, 2018 at the University of Cape Coast.
“Design Thinking is a collaborative and iterative problem-solving methodology, which is an action-oriented and solution focused problem-solving technique taught in some elite business schools and practiced in global businesses. This method of learning is gaining ground in pre-university education in the USA, Asia and Europe, by introducing elementary, middle and high school students to core design thinking and experiential learning modules with practical hands-on solution delivery,” AOBA-NA said in a statement.
“The primary objective of the workshop is to contribute to the development of the Ghanaian senior secondary school (SSS) student by introducing this non-traditional instructional methodology. AOBA-NA’s sole purpose is to provide students with the thinking process skills for an entrepreneurial, problem-solving mindset in their formative years, to enable them to apply this process to real-life socio-economic projects.”
“We believe preparing students for future leadership would require academic excellence not only in theory, the acquisition and regurgitation of knowledge but, increasingly, also in the application of knowledge to solve society’s problems — learning by “doing” and ‘executing’ projects.”
Fifty-two students were selected from all disciplines (Arts, Science, Business, and Commerce) accompanied by teacher-liaisons who participated in the workshop led by a professor emeritus from the renowned Stanford University, USA, one of the leading teaching and research institutions; ranked as one of the top universities in the world.
The workshop focused on the examination and application of the design thinking principles; “Empathize – Define – Ideate – Prototype – Test,” to solve needs identified by the students on their school campuses and surrounding communities.
The workshop concluded with an exhibition of the prototypes designed and built by the students to address their needs, which included the following:
“The Trans Smoke Dome for the capture and transformation of smoke into fuel; the formulation of bed bug spray using easily obtained products such as kerosene, neem tree leaves and water to eradicate bed bugs; a gadget that emanates red and black colors to attract, capture and kill mosquitos; an improved dump site to eliminate stench, prevent mosquito breeding; an incinerator, waste recycling program that convert bio-degradable waste into compost to fertilize the school garden to supplement school feeding; and the design of improved classroom desks to accommodate students of different physiques,” the statement added.
It says AOBA-NA is planning a one-day follow-up session before the end of the first term of the current Academic Year to ensure continuation of the work started. AOBA-NA is also soliciting corporate sponsorship for the project prototypes, and inviting alumni from the other schools to partner in hosting future workshops.
“AOBA-NA extends a big thank you to the students, teachers and school authorities for their unwavering support, and to the management of the Coconut Grove Resort, Elmina, and University of Cape Coast clubhouse for their wonderful hospitality,” it concluded.