From Ghana to the Brown School: Portia Nartey Breaks Barriers and Champions Women’s Education

Amidst the esteemed halls of the Brown School stands Portia Nartey, a beacon of hope, determination, and inspiration. As a doctoral student and ICHAD Study Coordinator, she proudly stands as the first woman in her family to not only complete college but also secure a master’s degree. Today, with the world as her canvas, Portia is on a mission to transform lives at an international level.

Portia’s roots in Ghana cultivated her purpose. Witnessing firsthand the cultural confines that stifled the ambitions of many women, she fostered a profound passion for the growth and development of women and girls. “There’s an unyielding fire within me to champion the cause of women’s and girls’ education,” asserts Nartey. Central to her research endeavors is a pursuit to decipher strategies that prevent young girls from forsaking their education due to financial constraints.

However, her ascent in academia wasn’t devoid of obstacles. Financial constraints compelled her to momentarily halt her graduate studies in 2018. Yet, resilience defines Portia. In the subsequent year, she procured scholarships from Washington University in St. Louis, enabling her to rejoin the distinguished Brown School.

With firsthand experience of the hardships students grapple with in securing financial aid, Portia championed the cause further. Aligning with WashU’s ‘Make Way’ initiative, she ardently supports their drive to garner funds, a lifeline for numerous female scholars teetering on the verge of discontinuing their college journey.

ICHAD lauds Portia’s monumental strides both within the scholarly realm of WashU and the broader contours of her homeland, Ghana.

Discover more of Portia’s journey and her impassioned cause in the “Make Way Documentary”: Watch Here.