Patrick Asare was born and raised by illiterate parents in the remote Ghanaian village of Boadua. His family was so large and impoverished that not even the earnings from crushing hard work could buy enough food to fill their bellies. No one in the village aspired to be educated beyond middle school.
Numerous obstacles stood in the way of Patrick's yearning for higher knowledge, including gnawing hunger, lack of sleep, and backbreaking daily chores. During school vacations, he toiled in a jungle farm teeming with poisonous snakes and insects.
Dedicating every stolen moment to study, Patrick passed the common entrance exam with flying colors. Despite major setbacks, he kept his eye on the prize. He graduated from an elite secondary school and earned his engineering degree in the Soviet Union during the perestroika era. Finding his way to the United States, he taught Russian and math and eventually obtained a superb education from top American universities.
Patrick's travels and adventures taught him that, regardless of his hardscrabble childhood, he was a lucky man. He was raised by loving and supportive parents and lived in a society where race was not an issue. Teaching in inner-city high schools alerted him to the particular challenges faced by America's urban Black youth.
Patrick's amazing story offers insights, hope, and inspiration to others who face astronomical odds.