Entertainment of 2014-05-08

UP CLOSE WITH: Miss Ghana USA 2014 Finalist Whitney Appeanimaa Osei

As the excitement for the grand-finale of Miss Ghana USA 2014 beauty pageant glow daily, it is only natural that fanatics of the covetous contest and the general public get to know who some of the contestants really are.
Today, Whitney Appeanimaa Osei – one of the intelligent, bold and beautiful finalists for this year’s beauty pageant is profiled.
Whitney Appeanimaa Osei hails from the Akyim-Abuakwah capital Kibi, located in the southern part of the Eastern Region of Ghana. Growing up Whitney was always outspoken and ambitious, proving herself to be a leader at a very young age. After spending the first six years of her youth in Ghana, Whitney migrated to the United States where she lived in Maryland briefly before relocating to Atlanta, Georgia where she presently resides.
As a young adult, Whitney faced many obstacles which only fueled her hunger to achieve success. She relied on her ambition and determination for inspiring creativity and innovation across the African Diaspora to persevere through her toughest challenges.
Whitney is currently a student at Georgia Perimeter College in Dunwoody, GA majoring in Business Administration. She will be completing a Bachelor of Science degree at Georgia State University in Managerial Science, concentrating on Business Operations Management. Upon the completion of her BS, Whitney plans to complete an MBA in International Business at Emory University before settling in Ghana, so that she can effectively utilize her skills and resources as an educational mechanism to help young entrepreneurs in Ghana.
In 2011, Whitney represented Ghana in the Miss West Africa USA scholastic beauty pageant and was crowned First Runner-Up. During her reign, Whitney developed Influence Africa: a social media platform that allows young Africans across the Diaspora to shed light on current projects and innovative achievements as well as network and share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating the next generation of African leaders and decision-makers.
Amid an annual visit to Accra in 2012, Whitney discovered a common problem that most Ghanaians faced: an abundance of skill, knowledge and ideas but a lack of opportunity and effective implementation. Though many Ghanaians were extraordinarily gifted in various crafts, very few were employed. This realization inspired Whitney to begin work on her platform initiative: decreasing poverty in Africa through education, empowerment and entrepreneurship.
Currently, 26% of Ghana’s population lives below the national poverty line. Of those rural, uneducated subsistence agricultural farmers (entrepreneurs) and unemployed adults are among the poorest socio-economic groups in Ghana. As Miss Ghana USA 2014, Whitney will work to decrease the national poverty rate and increase economic development within Africa (focusing on Ghana initially) through The 3 E Initiative: Education, Empowerment and Entrepreneurship.
With education Ghanaians will become better equipped with the tools, knowledge and technology necessary to start and grow businesses effectively and efficiently both in the United States and Ghana. Through empowerment and entrepreneurship, an emphasis will be placed on women who play a very essential role in Ghana’s economic development and should be empowered to become leaders and entrepreneurs in their communities. Connecting and sharing insight on essential business fundamentals will be extremely crucial as it will generate an open, mutual partnership for coaching mentorships between executives, leaders and dreamers alike on the two continents (Africa and North America) . Whitney is actively working on her platform through the start-up of her fashion brand Julie A. Julie A. seeks to employ African artisans as manufacturers, supplementing in depth production training and income which enable them to become financially self-sustainable.
Whitney also plans to establish a garment factory in Ghana in the near future to provide further career opportunities for qualified Ghanaians.
In her leisure time, Whitney enjoys any activity that allows her to give back to her community. A list of organizations that she has worked with and continues to works with is: Books for Africa, AIDS Atlanta, CARE USA, Back to Work Atlanta, The PerVita Foundation (Ghana) and the Ghana International Chamber of Commerce- Atlanta Chapter.
She commends the opportunity that the Miss Ghana USA organization gives to young women – a pedestal to apply their ingenuity constructively in changing the negative perspectives surrounding Africa. Such an executive position demands an individual of Whitney’s grandeur who is poised, intelligent, ambitious and professionally qualified with a genuine passion to identify social issues and work collectively with leaders to regulate and sustain solutions. She is a true representation of the modern Ghanaian woman.
Source: Yaw Sarpon
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