Committed to Africa

Romaric Compaoré comes from Burkina Faso and is working on a project to facilitate access to water in his village. Romaric is part of the first cohort of Sciences Po - MasterCard Foundation Scholars, a programme to educate and support bright young African students with a personal commitment to changing the world around them.

Why did you choose the Europe-Africa programme at Sciences Po?

I wanted to get to know my continent better so I could take an active part in its development. I was looking for a really African programme, not like the African Studies programmes at American universities. I wanted a strong African focus. When I heard about Sciences Po’s Europe-Africa programme at my high school in Ouagadougou, I knew it was for me. Then when I learned there was a Mastercard Foundation scholarship for African students keen to contribute to the continent’s development, that was the icing on the cake.

Where does this desire to become an expert on Africa come from?

The development of my country, Burkina Faso, is closely linked to the development of the continent’s other countries. African countries have to solve their problems together. I want to devote my efforts to the economical and political integration of African countries. That’s why I want to become an expert on the continent. Later, I would like to join an organisation like the African Union, or start a company to work towards African integration.

When you were 16, you launched a project to build a water tower in your village in Burkina Faso. Can you tell us more?

It was at high school that I started the Yakin project, named after my village in Burkina Faso. The goal is to build a water tower in Yakin, a village where the main economic activity is market gardening.

But market gardening is only possible for three months a year, in the rainy season. Over those three months, the villagers manage to grow enough produce for the whole village. But after the three months, in the dry season, water is difficult to find. The children are tasked with fetching water and leave school. The women can’t go to the hospital because it involves costs they can’t pay. Without treatment, many children die of fever.

If water were available all year, the village would have income all year. Solving the water problem would solve most of the village’s other problems.

I started this project in Year 11 and I plan to finish it in 2018.

How do you plan to finish the water tower project in Burkina Faso while you’re studying at Sciences Po?

I’ve already raised quite a lot of money, but we still need more to make the project a reality. When I arrived at Sciences Po, I presented the project and the Reims students chose it as one of student initiatives for the year, which means I’ll be able to keep working on it and raising funds, even at a distance. My goal for 2018 is to raise the necessary funds to build the water tower and get it up and running.

Related links

Sciences Po's Got Talent

Sciences Po's Got Talent

Earlier this month, Sciences Po TV and the BDE (Student Association) held the annual "Sciences Po's Got Talent" Talent Show on the Paris campus. Relive the highlights in this video.

More
Access to Sciences Po sites reestablished

Access to Sciences Po sites reestablished

After two days of blocking by a group of students mobilized against the law on the Orientation and Success of Students (ORE), the occupation of the main campus of Sciences Po Paris ended on Friday, 20 April in the early afternoon. Access to all Sciences Po sites has been reopened for students, teachers and employees. Classes have resumed normally as of Friday afternoon (3:45 pm).

More
Reconciling Human with Human Rights

Reconciling Human with Human Rights

Vanessa Topp is German but grew up in the United States. She studies Human Rights and Humanitarian Action at PSIA, the Paris School of International Affairs. Alongside her Master's, she volunteers her time and engages in aiding refugees in Paris. This summer, she plans to volunteer in a refugee camp in Greece.

More
Cheers to 10 years of SPIT

Cheers to 10 years of SPIT

This past month, SPIT, the Sciences Po International Tasting competition celebrated its 10th anniversary. A blind wine and champagne tasting competition organized by Sciences Po’s oenology association, In Vino Veritas, gathers each year twelve student teams from French and International universities at Maison Bollinger. 

More
Jacinda Ardern and Justin Trudeau at Sciences Po

Jacinda Ardern and Justin Trudeau at Sciences Po

They are amongst the youngest heads of government in the world. In Europe for the Commonwealth Summit 2018, Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, and Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, made a stop at Sciences Po for two exceptional events.

More
Lifting the barriers to women entrepreneurship

Lifting the barriers to women entrepreneurship

Whether setting up a new business, negotiating a pay rise or taking on more responsibility in the workplace, women can be supported in reaching leadership positions. Sciences Po's new Women in Business Chair aims to improve understanding of the obstacles women face and spearhead action to remove them. Interview with Anne Boring, researcher in charge of the Chair. Anne’s work focuses on the analysis of gender inequalities in the professional world.

More
Corporate & Social Responsibility at the heart of the brew

Corporate & Social Responsibility at the heart of the brew

Coffee is in danger. In a context of climate change and high utilization of pesticides and fertilizers, how does a company like Nespresso innovate to be and remain a positive company, with Corporate Social Responsibility at the heart of its business and brand purpose? Arnaud Deschamps, CEO of Nespresso France, came to Sciences Po invited by the School of Management and Innovation, to share his vision and discuss the brand's engagement to save coffee while respecting farmers and the planet.

More
Rethinking the city

Rethinking the city

Patrick Le Galès, CNRS research director at Sciences Po’s Center for European Studies and Comparative Politics (CEE), dean of the Urban School and Fellow at the British Academy, has just received the prestigious CNRS silver medal. The distinction recognizes the quality of his research in political science and sociology, as well as his participation in the creation of the CEE, a leading laboratory for the social sciences in Europe, and the creation of Sciences Po’s Urban School three years ago.   

More
Summer in Paris is a moveable feast

Summer in Paris is a moveable feast

Every summer, Sciences Po opens the doors of its Parisian campus to students from all over the world for the Sciences Po Summer School. An exceptional opportunity for cultural exchange, immersion and discovery, this year’s activities programme includes theatre and cinema outings, wine tasting classes, day trips to Monet’s home and garden in Giverny, the Loire Valley castles, Normandy, Reims and more. Discover in this video some of the highlights of the 2017 edition from the students themselves.
 
More