Kanfany Ghislain

Ghislain KanfanyI was born at Thies in Senegala region which is 70 km far from the capital Dakar. As a childbeing a doctor was one of my dream. After my high school diploma I applied for the medicine faculty in the University of Dakar. At the same timeI decided to pass the test for joining the Senegalese National Agricultural School (ENSA). FortunatelyI got the two opportunity either to be a doctor or move on agricultural science. This situation put me in a dilemma. Being a doctor which was one of my dream or move for agricultural and stay at Thies with better accommodation and the possibility to be near the family. I remember when I was asking for adviceone of my friend and classmate was laughing at me and saidHow can you talk about agriculture schoollearning how to farmafter a high degree diploma in science? Finallyafter getting advice from different personsI decided to join ENSA which was located in my region and with a better accommodation.After five yearsin November 2008I graduated from ENSA with an agriculture engineering diplomaspecialising in Crop production. In 2009 I joined the Senegalese National Research Institute (ISRA) where I was working as a research assistant in the seed production unit and at the same time doing my masters degree in Agronomy and crop protection at ENSA. In July 2010I left the National programme and joined AfricaRice Sahel Stationas a research assistant in the plant breeding unit. My work was to assist the principal scientists on their different breeding programs. I was conducting experiment on rice for both irrigated and rainfed lowland ecologiesconduct regional experiments in AfricaRice members countries eg PVS activitiesanalyse experimental data and write reports. I was also acting as a resource person on rice improvement training conducted by AfricaRice and assist both Msc and Bsc students conducting their research experimentation in the breeding unit. The breeding program was focusing on tolerance to abiotic stress (coldsalinity)high yielding potential and hybrid rice.In October 2013when I got the opportunity offered by WACCI PhD programme in plant breeding sponsored by (WAAPP) I was very excited. I said to myself this is a great opportunity because it will provide me the necessary skills I need on plant breedingsince it was not my area of specialisation but with practice I have gained experience. SoI decided to resign from AfricaRice and joined ISRA as a research scholarwhich was one of the conditions.I m very grateful to the WAAPP for sponsoring and giving me the opportunity to do my PhD. I trust this training will give me the opportunity to attain the necessary skills to be able to contribute in alleviating cereals cultivation problems in Senegalspecially the downy mildew problem in pearl millet.