Clement Kubuga, a PhD candidate in Human Nutrition at Michigan State University, joins the Borlaug LEAP Fellowship in Fall 2016 as he continues his research into community-based agriculture programs designed to improve trace mineral levels in mothers and children in northern Ghana. As a self-described “missionary of nutrition”, Clement takes his role in improving the nutritional status of those in his home country very seriously: “Throughout my life, I experienced personally and witnessed rampant food insecurity in the northern region”, he says. Since his time as an undergraduate, Clement has explored the interplay between food insecurity and nutritional status in Ghana, from the nutritional value of local beer to the connection between prisoner nutrition and character reformation. He sees his time as a Borlaug LEAP fellow as an opportunity to sharpen his research skills and create new linkages toward improving local and national nutrition security.
As a researcher and emerging leader, Clement will be working with two mentors, one from a US institution and one from a CGIAR center throughout his Borlaug LEAP fellowship. Dr. Won Song, a long time professor of Human Nutrition and Clement’s current PhD advisor, will continue to work with Clement on designing appropriate research proposals and interpreting their results for broader dissemination. Dr. Gina Kennedy, who is the component leader for the Healthy Diets for Sustainable Food Systems program at Bioversity International, will work with him to create activities designed to assess agricultural biodiversity and food security on smallholder farms. Both will lend their years of leadership experience to his work and help him mold his own leadership style for the future. Clement plans to complete his dissertation research and earn his doctorate in 2018.