University Canada West has helped Dr. Michael Amanfi make the most of his passion while encouraging him to not just improve his career, but also to revitalize his interest in academics.
Born and raised in a small town in Ghana, Dr. Amanfi works as the chief technical officer of Empower ID, an Ohio-based cloud software company that specializes in identity and access management.
His main responsibilities are working with senior management and the CEO to create new ideas, to work with the product team and to travel around Europe to help customers with their products.
Having spent most of his adult life in Canada, where he enjoyed using technology to solve critical problems, Dr. Amanfi earned an undergraduate degree in computer science. After completion, he continued to pursue his passion.
“I had the technical background, but I lacked the business acumen to realize my true passion. I knew I needed to study business, but where and how was my greatest challenge especially with a full-time job and a young family of my own,” he admitted.
However, when a friend informed him about University Canada West, Dr. Amanfi realized it was the opportunity he’d been waiting for. Capitalizing on this chance, he worked hard and graduated from UCW earning his MBA, after which, he continued on to pursue his doctorate from the Grand Canyon University’s College of Doctoral Studies.
“The MBA program at UCW greatly motivated me, so the doctorate was a natural progression for me. I didn’t even give it a second thought,” he said. “The MBA program and its concluding thesis project prepared me very well to take-on a rigorous curriculum that leads to the doctorate… I’m glad UCW provided me with that great deal of preparation.”
Along with being the chief technical officer at Empower ID, Dr. Amanfi also works for Wi2 Co-Lab which helps doctoral learners finish their thesis. He was approached by one of the senior members to work there as he had seen the quality of his published dissertation.
“I consider myself blessed to be in a position to now help others in their academic journey. Although it is easy to simply take all the credit, I am careful not to forget my UCW instructors, who rejuvenated my interest in scholarly studies and helped me to select a doctoral program that was in line with my life and career goals,” Dr. Amanfi said.
Being proud of the work he had done for his master’s and doctorate, Dr. Amanfi wanted to put his thesis into practice by making it relevant and applicable in the real world. He made the decision to turn it into two books for people and small businesses to use.
“The books are a direct result of that research and they go a long way in helping small and medium businesses devise better strategies to protect their critical data in the cloud. I am already working on a third book”, he explained.
Among everything else Dr. Amanfi does, he also spends his time working on the Restoration and Empowerment for Social Transition (REST) Center’s board where he is currently fulfilling a two-year term.
REST is a not-for-profit organization aimed at promoting transitions for youths leaving the care system into housing programs, with a focus on ending homelessness. Dr. Amanfi provides leadership on strategic technology oversight, digital transformation and project planning.
“Joining the REST Center has been an eye-opener, I can now bring my academic and work experience to supporting and contributing to the community and that is very satisfying,” he said.
University Canada West is a technology-driven, business-focused university in the heart of downtown Vancouver. UCW offers MBA, Bachelor of Commerce, Bachelor of Arts in Business Communication and Associate of Arts degrees as well as preparatory programs.
Written by Rafael Ramirez