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Dr. Alice Kosgei

Born in ChelelekAinabkoi divisionEldoreta small village in KenyaAlice Kosgei is the fourth child in a family of eight. As a result of her ParentsMr. and Mrs. Kipkosgei being peasant farmersshe grew up farming on their small farm. It was the only source of food and income for her education. This made Alice have a positive attitude towards farming.I used to get so frustrated whenever we planted crops which failed to produce due mostly to diseasespestsdrought and very low temperatures during certain times of the season. I advised my parents to adjust planting season to escape these but it did not help Alice says. At a tender ageAlice used to ask herself whether there were varieties that could withstand such conditions. From the advice and encouragement she got from her parents and her secondary school agriculture teacherAlice worked hard to pursue a BSc in Agricultural Education and Extension and later enrolled for an MSc in Agronomy (crop protection) from Egerton UniversityKenya. She moved on to work with the Ministry of Agriculture.My country so far has not achieved food security. This has been aggravated mainly by droughtassociated with climate change among other challenges. Majority of Kenyans are poor small-scale farmers who cannot afford farming inputs. Furthermorethe Country is 80% arid and semi arid making irrigation non feasible and expensive hence escalating the challenges. With my scholarship from AGRA to pursue a PhD in plant breedingI hope to contribute my share in developing chickpea varieties that are both high yielding and tolerant to Kenya s dryland areas Alice affirms. For Aliceit is worth trying than to just watch millions of Kenyans die of hunger. Her PhD work at WACCI will also form the basis for her breeding research into other various abiotic and biotic stresses of crops in her country.It is my prayer that I will do my best to achieve this She Says