The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) is an independent body of the European Union that was set up in 2008 to deliver innovation across Europe.
In accordance with its goal of amplifying creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurship, EIT provides an opportunity through its educational programme to train young people all over the world.
EIT-labelled educational programmes at Master and PhD levels encourage students to become more creative, innovative and entrepreneurial.
The programme, which is fully funded by the European Union in collaboration with six European universities, gives selected individuals all over the world the opportunity to attend three or four of six universities to gain knowledge.
David Atuahene, an alumnus of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) and Aggrey Memorial SHS, was among three Ghanaians that were selected for the EIT educational programme in 2019.
For his Master of Science (MSc), he attended the Autonomous University of Madrid, University of Turin, University of Warsaw and Queens University Belfast.
At the end of his studies, David was honoured with the ‘Excellent Entrepreneurial Potential Award’ for his project which is aimed at improving brain health, specifically, brain cognitive functions using a novel nutrigenetic approach.
Explaining why he decided to work on such a project, he said: “The percentage of individuals suffering from brain disorders are increasing continuously in today’s world. 16% of elderly people over the age of 70 experience mild cognitive impairment, of which 14% suffer from dementia in Europe, where I conducted my study.”
“Also, recent research has shown that up to 42% of the population aged over 60 are affected by mild cognitive impairment (MCI) worldwide, this is now a great public health concern and hence I was very motivated to do my best to help in this regard,” he added.
His research, however, revealed that these disorders can be prevented, managed and treated by nutrition in the right manner.
“There are bioactive substances from various food sources that affect different biological pathways that lead to these disorders and hence with precision nutrition it can be managed,” David indicated.
David added that pursuing a masters degree programme from four different European universities came with “great research exposure”, as well as “great student culture and networking”, though he experienced “some few racism challenges”. On the other hand, he enjoyed the exposure to European culture and scenery, as well as making new friends.
As a sustainable development enthusiast, however, David is on a mission to contribute his quota towards zero hunger, good health and well-being.
“I want to pursue more field experience out here, with knowledge acquired and skills gained, and come to Ghana to impact academia, research and development,” he said.
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