The University for Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) has conferred an Honorary Doctorate Degree on Professor Margaret Gyapong, Director of its Institute of Health Research.
The Degree was conferred on her by Chairman of Council Justice Jones V M Dotse, also a Supreme Court Judge at the second session of the sixth congregation of the University.
The Professor, ranked among top female scientists and had become the face of the University after clocking numerous achievements in the world of research, rising against a background of Medical Anthropology and Epidemiology to secure international credentials in malaria and neglected tropical diseases research.
She served on several boards and committees, and recently established a support fund for needy female students with money she got from an award for her contributions to the reduction of diseases attached to poverty.
Her citation celebrated several initiatives and interventions her achievements had benefited the University, listing millions of dollars in research grants and the attraction of research collaborations with major bodies including the WHO.
It read “Professor Margaret Gyapong: Distinguished Scholar, Proud daughter of Ghana, valued member of the UHAS Community: As a medical anthropologist, you have passionately distinguished yourself in implementation research, maternal and child health and neglected tropical diseases, working tirelessly to intersect health research and practice by building research capacity, leading the authorship of various toolkits and manuals, and facilitating knowledge sharing.
“Since joining UHAS, the University has benefited from your immense experience in building research capacity, attracting academic collaborators, and winning large research grants.
“Your leadership has attracted about five million dollars in research grants to the University and resulted in the Institute of Health Research being designated as a WHO/TDR satellite training center for Implementation Research.
“You have about 116 scientific publications in reputable peer-reviewed journals; you serve on numerous boards and committees, including Sight Savers Board of Trustees, the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute External Review Board, the Task Force for Global Health Campaign Effectiveness Advisory Board, WHO Scientific and Technical Advisory Group (STAG) on Neglected Tropical Diseases, the WHO/AFRO Advisory Committee on Health Research and Development; and you are an advisor on capacity building and training in Malaria for the Harvard TC Chan School of Public Health WHO Rethinking Malaria Program. All these testify to your academic prowess and international credibility.
“You were among 12 women worldwide to receive the first Heroines of Health award in 2017 for your work in drawing attention to the needs of women suffering from the consequences of Neglected Tropical Diseases; in 2018, you were profiled in TDR Global for some of your achievements in Implementation Research and work on NTDs; and on International Women’s Day 2021, you were celebrated by WHO/TDR as one of 15 women who champion mentorship and collaboration among scientists tackling infectious diseases in low-and middle-income countries.
“In May of the same year, you were ranked by the World Scientist and University Ranking 2021-AD Scientific Index 2021 as the number four scientist in the University of Health and Allied Sciences, number 13 in Ghana, and number 550 in Africa.
“On October 18, 2021, you were adjudged, “Most Outstanding Female Scientist” by the European Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDTCP) for your contribution, training, and mentorship in reducing poverty-related diseases; you donated the entire prize of EUR 20,000 to establish the UHAS Needy Female Students’ Support Fund.
“Your award, no doubt, improved the international visibility of the University on the global academic landscape and among health educators and researchers.
“Throughout your career, you have demonstrated excellence, leadership, altruism, and sustained commitment to the needy; and today, UHAS is widely acclaimed for your efforts. Professor Margaret Gyapong, the University Council, on behalf of the entire UHAS Community, congratulates you on your achievements and is proud that you are one of our own. For your distinguished and outstanding role helping the needy female in UHAS, we confer on you an Honorary Doctorate Degree, honoris causa, on this 9th Day of April 2022, as a token of our heartfelt appreciation for your role in bringing visibility to the UHAS brand.”
Prof Gyapong who was a former Director of the Dodowa Research Institute, received the honor at Second Session of the 6th Congregation of the University.
Dr Joseph Siaw Agyepong, Chief Executive Officer of the Jospong Group of Companies who was the Guest Speaker at the graduation, announced a US$100,000 support for the UHAS Needy Female Students’ Support Fund towards research.