|Para Espana Con Amor
8/26/2015 4:18:57 PM
By Hakim Abdul-Ali
I write about so many topics until I sometimes don't have to look far for absorbing ones to develop to bring to the mind-sets of "The Chronicle's" readership.
Well, this story is one with a tremendous upside because it's really about the future of Black America, and it's about emphasizing positively that "Black Lives (Do) Matter." It's also a story of family, love, education, wisdom and so much more.
"Para Espana Con Amor," deals with the vision and tenacity of a twenty-one-year old brilliant young lady named Renee Asamoah. She's truly a special and intelligent "hue-man" being with a unique aura that far exceeds her youthful age.
Renee is a recent college graduate from Columbia College in Columbia, South Carolina, in 2014, where she graduated with distinction attaining more than a 3.8 grade point average average. She doubled majored in Political Science and Spanish with a minor in International Studies.
She's been accepted as a graduate student at the prestigious The Autonomous University of Madrid in Madrid, Spain, to pursue her Masters Degree in African Studies and International Studies beginning in September 2015. She wasn't eligible for a scholarship because she wasn't entitled for one due to the fact that she's not a European Union citizen.
Renee is attempting to pay for this educational pursuit herself with her parents' and others' assistance. It's to be noted that Renee studied at the University de Salamanca in Spain in 2013 for three months.
Not deterred, this persevering student related to me that the Autonomous University is one of the most recognized ones in Europe in African Studies, and she felt that she was able to successfully compete there because she is bilingual and knowledgeable.
Obviously, by now, you know tell that she's fluent in Spanish having studied and loved the language from an early age. The lady is sharp.
There's so much more though to this articulate scholar-to-be, in that, she's so gracefully respectful, humble and unassuming that you may forget that she's a young genius with a powerful sense of African awareness about her. That's what makes her so stunningly dynamic. She's for real.
The oldest child of four of parents Kwasi and Comfort Asamoah, who migrated to America from Ghana more than two decades ago, Renee was born in New Jersey and educated there, California and South Carolina.
Her parents, both independent entrepreneurs in the grocery business, encourage a sense of African dignity and family honor in all of their offsprings and its visible when you meet them.
Having finally settled in Summerville, South Carolina, in 2007, the Asamoah family have become established in the Lowcountry, earning admirable respect as loving parents and as hard working individuals. Kwasi and his wife, Comfort (yes, that's her real name), have a son Tevin, 18, and ten-year- old identical twins, Jena and Jenee, who are precious and adorable. They are family.
The thing about Renee that I was and have been most impressed about is her sense of immense African-centered approaches to life. This was evident in our interviewed at her father's business in North Charleston last week. Her mother operates the family's other business in Summerville.
When asked about her feelings of being proud of her African roots, being Black and also about her pursuing further studies in this area, Renee said,"In terms of being of African descent, I learned at an early age that we [as Black people] must work harder because of the negative stereotypes that we're working to diminish.
I'm striving to become successful so that I can take care of my parents the way that they have always sacrificed to take care of me and my siblings. It's important to focus on what leaders' successes and downfalls have been, but it's equally important to focus on what we are doing (now) in order to prepare the next generation."
Oh, by the way, in case you didn't know what my topic headline, "Para Espana Con Amor," meant, it simply says" To Spain With Love." That's about as apt a way of describing Renee Asamoah's next academic sojourn in the pursuit of knowledge because of her love for academics and her sense of who she is.
We here at "The Chronicle" wish her well and know that she's on a mission to make a future impact on Europe, America, Africa and the rest of the world.
I, personally, salute her because the young Afro-princess is qualified and knows what it's all about, academically speaking, when it's said in Africa "that it takes a village to raise a child."
"The America People" must never forget that all the world's children, including those from The Motherland and her descendants everywhere, need encouragement, love and support in order for them to be the best that they can be, regardless of ethnicities or nationalities. Love of self and knowledge of where you came from are the keys and the wise Renee Asamoahs of today, who seek positive knowledge, clearly understand and exemplify the realities of those powerful axioms.
Remember "Black Lives Matter," too. Education and unity are tough to beat when matched with righteous pride in who you are and what you should be legitimately about.
I'll conclude this article by referencing a proverb from Ghana that says "If you don't know where you are going, at least know where you have come from." Think deeply about that.
If anyone wishes to help this young lady with defraying some of the financial burdens of going to a foreign university that is facing her, you may contact her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For today and always, "seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave" and, that's, "As I See It."