Oprah Winfrey congratulates Professor Mamogeti Paken on receiving the new African Education Medal.

Launched earlier this year by T4 Education and HP in partnership with Intel and Microsoft, the honor recognizes the Vice Chancellor of the University of Cape Town for his “influence, leadership and advocacy in the education sector in Africa.”

Oprah, 68, said, “Congratulations to the professors who have been selected as recipients of the African Education Medal. It is an honor to recognize leaders who are making a positive impact on education.” Having witnessed firsthand how much your vision, passion, and commitment have made a difference in the lives of others through your support of the Leadership Academy, I don’t know anyone who deserves it more.

“We salute you for the important work you are doing in education and commend you for being a positive and visionary leader during these times. Congratulations and blessings on your lives.”

Professor Phakeng was selected as the winner from a field of 10 finalists across the continent, including Tanzania’s former president, Jakaya Kikwete.

Professor Phakeng said: Quality education is the key to Africa’s future and we are very grateful to HP, Intel and Microsoft for receiving this award, inspiring people across the African continent to further the cause of African education. I hope you will. ”

Data show that sub-Saharan Africa has the highest rates of education exclusion in the world, with more than one-fifth of children between the ages of 6 and 11 out of school, and girls being particularly disadvantaged. is placed in

Professor Phakeng is one of the world’s leading academics in mathematics education.

Raised in rural apartheid-era South Africa, she became the first black woman to earn a doctorate in math education in 2002 and is “determined not to be the last.”

She has published over 80 research papers and five compiled volumes, with research focused on language practice in the multilingual mathematics classroom, transforming mathematics education in the classroom throughout Africa and beyond. continues to form.

Her research and community work have also earned her many prestigious awards, including the Order of the Baobab (Silver) awarded by the President of South Africa in April 2016.

She was named Africa’s Most Influential Women Scholar in 2014 by CEO Magazine and was included in the first list of Forbes’ 50 Most Influential Women in Africa in 2020.

This year she became the first African to be elected Chair of the Alliance for International Research Universities, succeeding Professor Stephen J. Toop, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge.

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