The Readers’ Hub is pleased to bring to you a most thrilling encounter with one of its ardent readers on its Social Convo session.
Our guest is a Doctoral researcher at MIIT Key Laboratory of Engineering Thermophysics, School of Energy and Power Engineering, Nanjing University of Science and Technology. He is Energy and Power Engineer, researcher, and a consultant,
He specialises in the use of mathematics and computer simulations to understand how physical processes manifest; application of Nuclear Techniques for oil and gas exploration and exploitation; applied and computational mathematics; reservoir engineering and Energy Economics.
His current research focuses on optimising production schemes for the production of hydrocarbons in petroleum reservoirs. He has worked with leading global institutions including the United Nations (UN) Environment and the BRICS Youth Energy Agency.
Our guest won the First Prize Laureate of the BRICS Youth Energy Outlook (2020); a leading international research study aimed at delivering a view of young people on the challenges for the energy industry that BRICS countries will be facing in the nearest future.
He is actively consulting for RAFT on a number of developmental projects in the area of energy consumption.
Ladies and gentlemen, please help us welcome our guest for tonight’s Social Convo session Mr. Sidique Gawusu.
Haadi: It is my pleasure to host such an accomplished personality tonight and I have the honour to welcome Mr. Sidique Gawusu to tonight’s Social Convo session. Welcome sir
Mr. Gawusu: Thank you for having me. I am honoured to be here!
Haadi: To put the records right about your personality by yourself, who is Dr. Sidique Gawusu?
Mr. Gawusu: Thanks for the question. My name is Sidique Gawusu, born and bred in Wa-Upper West Region. I am what you would call an Energy Engineer. I am dependable and detail-oriented. My job is to blend mathematics and computer simulations to see how physical activities will behave in real world environment.
It could be optimising production schemes for oil and gas reservoirs, modelling designs for different kinds of machinery and plants, wind turbine optimisation, etc. I also work on projects designed to reduce energy use or costs. This may include designing, building, evaluating, or remodelling energy systems or energy procurement methods. A Blockchain enthusiast! I have recently been looking into how to tokenise energy consumption.
Haadi: That’s awesome. Kindly take us through your educational journey, and social life, highlighting on the key milestones you accomplished and your sources of inspiration and support
Mr. Gawusu: That is a tough one! I completed Nandom Senior High School in 2006 after Fongo E/A Primary/JSS (“Dasabile”); we used to call it Busa Dan Ibu. NANSEC was particularly an enriching experience; it was always home away from home.
I went further to have my University education from the University for Development Studies, University of Education (UEW), University of Ghana (UG) and Nanjing University of Science and Technology, where I obtained my BSc, PGDE, MPhil, and a PhD (thanks to the CSC scholarship) respectively.
I am also an associate member of the Association of Certified Chartered Economists/American Academy of Financial Management (ACCE/AAFM-USA) with a specialisation in Energy economics.
After my national service, I applied for several scholarships to go and read my masters but was disappointed every time. The closest to this dream was on the awaiting list of Erasmus Mundus Scholarship at Lincoln University for a program I did not even like, Forensic Science. Fortunately, I was not given that scholarship.
After failing to secure a scholarship for my masters, I enrolled into two postgraduate programmes simultaneously at UG and UEW. While reading those two programmes, I used my first degree to apply for a PhD and was fortunate to be given two scholarships for two accelerated PhDs in the UK and China, four years each.
I decided to go to China after wider consultations (long story). I wrote an article about my reasons to go to China and not the UK, in nature journal, titled “The PhD student’s Dilemma”.
The article explores my experiences as a PhD student and some suggestions for people considering the same path. One of the reasons why I went to China was the generality of the programme. Like my first degree, I wanted to read a program that would give me many options in terms of career development.
I must confess, my social life needs serious improvement. However, I do organise retreats as an executive of StartupGrind-Nanjing; StartupGrind is a global community of entrepreneurs.
I do not get to hang out much with friends even though I have a very wide circle of friends and acquaintances. Believe me I have over 3000 friends on Facebook. Like many of us here, I also think the pandemic has some effect on the way we interact these days.
Haadi: Impressive! But it appears your whole life has been about studies all the time. Have you really enjoyed your childhood at all? And also kindly tell us about some of your childhood fond memories
Mr. Gawusu: In fact, one of my fondest memories was going to the farm with my grand mom. Well, I did not get to go there all the time, but when I did, this was the place to be.
For me, the farm was a place to hear stories. It was a place to learn more about our history. It was also a place for me to get to know more about the most important people in my life.
Haadi: Wow! I know a friend who doesn’t like the farm at all. You should have been a farmer then. Why do you opt for a career path in the energy sector and what is the motivation?
Mr. Gawusu: Energy as they say is the ability to work. Without energy, the modern world would not be able to keep moving or stay switched on. I wanted to be a part of the team that puts the world on its wheels.
In addition, the energy industry offers stability, opportunities, and growth. One thing that people often overlook is the importance of morale and job satisfaction. Two important parts of this are; being proud of what you do, and knowing that your work contributes to the greater good.
When you work in the energy industry, the work that you do contributes to overall improvements to livelihoods, and in some cases the environment including reducing pollution and beating back climate change. This helps both humans and animals as well. For me, that is enough motivation.
Haadi: A child who goes to the farm with his grand mum with such wonderful dreams. That’s impressive. You may have been inspired by someone. Who is your career development coach/mentor and how did he/she influence your life?
Mr. Gawusu: This is an excellent question on many levels. You know, the funny thing is that I never actually had a formal mentor before. Many times people will ask who your mentor is and how do you find one?
Fact is, I tried for many times to find a formal mentor and I actually never found one. Obviously, there are people who support me, maybe informal mentors. I never really had anyone who meets with me every month.
It is important to notice that, it is a common topic discussed these days. It is ok to have a mentor but if you do not, there is nothing wrong with that. You can still do it. Therefore, it is all right to go out there and do your own thing. My brother (“Prof”) has been an inspiration from day one. I came to love mathematics because of him.
Haadi: From observations, in the just ended general elections, it appears the contest for a seat in Ghana’s Parliament has become or is becoming a contest for the wealthy, populists and philanthropists but academics and people with very high academic profiles like you, seem to be unwelcome in electoral politics in Ghana. From your experience in electoral politics, do you think this assertion is valid?
Mr. Gawusu: I would say yes and no! It is largely dependent on a number of factors, the political party, the representative and the represented. The loyalty people have for Political Parties is stronger than the desire for an effective leader.
I have heard people say that even if they pick a Goat to stand on the ticket of some political parties they will still vote for the Goat. That should tell you that it has very little to do with the personality and status of the representative and more to do with the party.
Well, wealth does not hurt at all; stomachs direct a section of the voting population, no doubt about that. Unlike in developed nations where politicians are powered by campaign donations from ordinary people who consider them champions of matters they care deeply about, in our part of the world, the opposite is true.
The electorates mainly consider candidates for national and local positions who are wealthy and seen as having the resources to cater for their immediate needs, and these electorates demand to be rewarded for their votes.
Haadi: Hmmm! Interesting! Please sir, do you consider representing your people one day in parliament?
Mr. Gawusu: Wow! That is a very political question to a not so political person. The messiness of politics in Ghana and the misunderstood role of parliamentarians in the affairs of the nation (as lawmakers and not philanthropists and money-makers) discourage me.
That being said, in life, “You never say never”. Who knows, I can change my mind in the future. I also think that sometimes it is a question about whether your people want you to represent them.
Haadi: Your rare expertise will be needed to enrich the energy sector in the country. That being said, where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
Mr. Gawusu: I would relish the opportunity to restructure our energy industry. Lol
I am glad you asked. I think the coming five years will be productive for me. I see myself taking on more responsibilities, either through management or through higher-level individual contributions.
I am not sure which path will make sense to pursue, but I know for sure my goal right now is to build a strong foundation and gain valuable experience so that I will have a successful future in the energy industry.
Haadi: What do you do at your leisure time please?
Mr. Gawusu: Hahaha, strangely I do! I trade stocks and read investment related books and articles. I mostly trade commodities (Gold, Oil, Natural gas, Silver, etc.), Cryptocurrencies (Bitcoin, ethereum, Ripple, etc.) and Tech-stocks. I am a big believer in the S & P 500; I do not believe one can lose money trading that. I am more of a swing trader, and occasionally, day trader.
Haadi: As a member of the readers’ Hub, what do you make of this page and what do you suggest we do or needs to be done to keep the page running and better?
Mr. Gawusu: I mentioned earlier that I tried looking for a formal mentor and did not get one. The caliber of people we have on this platform is comparable to none, and could be the solution to this problem. I suggest we design a mentorship program – we are very lucky to have the brain of Ghana right here. Well-accomplished members could take some time out of their busy schedule to offer some mentoring to those in their various fields.
Haadi: Commendable! May I use this opportunity to call on members to voluntarily avail themselves for the mentorship program please? Anyone willing to be part of this should kindly get in touch with me or any of the moderators to be drafted into the program
QUESTIONS TIME WITH OUR READERS
Taiba: Do you think covid -19 and lockdown has had any positive impact on climate change? If yes what would that be?
Mr. Gawusu: Yes, for the first time we have seen pollution levels reduced significantly. In places like India where the Himalayas was seen for the first time in over 30 years because of reduced emissions due to the lockdown. So yes, it has had a significant impact on the CO2 emissions.
Haadi: Which book has been influential in your life that you will recommend for hub members to read?
Mr. Gawusu: The Client by John Grisham: it is a legal thriller and follows a young boy caught in a battle between the law and the mob. It has been generally believed that legal education is only for the law student, lawyers etc.
However, there are certain laws and regulation, and basic knowledge that are very necessary for a harmonious coexistence. You do not need a Law degree to have that basic understanding of the law. You can familiarise yourself with these basics by reading.
Books written by John Grisham would be a great start to acquiring such knowledge. Let me list a few of them here; The Runaway Jury, A Time to Kill, The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Chamber, The Rainmaker, The Street Lawyer, The Testament and The Brethren.
Haadi: Kindly tell us about the BRICS youth Energy Agency and your work with the UN
Mr. Gawusu: BRICS Youth Energy Outlook 2020 is an international annual project by the BRICS Youth Energy Agency aimed at delivering a view of young people on the challenges that BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) countries will be facing in the nearest future in the field of Energy development. The Outlook is a combined effort of researchers, who are students, assistant researchers or young professionals representing leading universities and energy-related organisations from BRICS countries.
The BRICS Youth Energy Outlook 2020 consolidated youth in their efforts to form a common vision for the development of BRICS energy industries, identified and searched for solutions to problems faced by youth, as well as built effective mechanisms for resolving them, taking into account experience and opportunities of the community countries.
UN Environment’s Sixth Global Environment Outlook (GEO-6) for Youth: Africa is substantively built on the GEO-6 Regional Assessment for Africa. Themed on green jobs, this youth publication has been produced through the collaborative effort of more than 100 youth writers, photographers, artists, and reviewers from 30 African countries. Drawn from all of Africa’s six sub-regions, these young people provide a regional mosaic of practical ideas, insights, analyses, and experiences about the potential of Africa’s natural resources to generate multi-sectorial green jobs. As is articulated in the publication, this potential can only be fully tapped into through the initiative of youth themselves, with support from policymakers and the private sector.
As a lead Author, I
- Took the overall responsibility for coordinating and drafting sections to given deadlines.
- Identified, collected and synthesised relevant material drawn from various contributing authors.
- Planned the relevant information, knowledge and data required for each section.
- Ensured that the various components of the section are brought together on time, are of
uniformly high quality and conform to the guidelines for credibility.
- Ensured that the manuscripts are completed to a high standard, collated and delivered to the
Secretariat in a timely manner and conform to the GEO-6 Guidelines for credibility.
- Ensured that all review comments are dealt with according to specific guidelines.
- Developed text that is scientifically, technically and socio economically sound incorporating
contributions by a wide variety of contributors.
- Ensured that any crosscutting scientific or technical issues, which may involve several sections
(and/or) regional assessments of the GEO-6 are addressed in a complete and coherent manner.
- Took responsibility for referring any scientific credibility issues such as uncertainties and use of
grey literature to the advisory team, when issues cannot be dealt with within their writing team.
Haadi: Awesome! You might have been the person Ghana needs to solve her energy problems. You will soon be fished out to remedy the energy situation in the country.
Daniel Alitu: With your expertise in Energy, do you see Ghana being a self-sufficient country in the production and utilisation of energy at a lesser cost compared to current system and it’s challenges the country is engulfed with?
Mr. Gawusu: Yes, when our Nuclear power plant (NPP) comes online; which is by far the cheapest source of energy now and I know there are some renewable projects like solar and wind being piloted in certain areas of the country. So a mix of these renewables and NPP will ultimately remedy the challenges we currently having with cost and stability.
Haadi: Congratulations for winning the first prize Laureate of the BRICS Youth Energy Outlook (2020).Your submissions prove that you deserve such prize
Mr. Gawusu: Thank you
Haadi: Kindly tell us about the RAFT consulting too
Mr. Gawusu: RAFT is a consulting agency that works with Governments, NGOs and individuals in empowering members of the community with the requisite skills and knowledge to succeed in their businesses, vocations, crafts, etc. We also undertake research for organisations on diverse areas.
Haadi: Wow! It’s really an interesting discussion with you. We wish we could go on and on but time and tides wait for no man.The Readers’ Hub is honoured and blessed to have the big brains like you and can’t thank you enough for interacting with us this evening
We will call on you on the mentorship program so you could mentor us especially the younger ones here to be like you .Kindly give us your concluding remarks, Sir
Mr. Gawusu: I would like to say once again how honoured I am to be on this platform and the opportunity to be on the hot seat. Thank you for your time!
Haadi: We are honoured and grateful to have share you wealth of experience with us
Mr. Gawusu: The pleasure is all mine!
Haadi: Readers, all too soon we have come to the end of another educative session on Social Convo.Until we come your way again next week with another edition, thanks to you all for making time with us tonight. My name is Haadi Bachang, sitting in for Bassing Kamal
Goodnight to you all. I’m out………………………………………(Exeunt)
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HUB EDITOR: Bassing A.M.A.Kamal