FSU prof back from Sierra Leone


Ferris State University Professor William Smith returned recently from a research trip made possible by a Fulbright Scholarship.

William Smith has been travelling back and forth to Sierra Leone for almost twenty years, but this was the first trip working with the Fulbright program.

Smith is a professor in Ferris’ college of Business and has been using these trips to learn about business practices in the West African country, and to work with locals there to improve those practices.

“When we go to countries such as Sierra Leone, we have to go there with the idea that we’re going to set up something that is sustainable, not sustainable by the outside world continuing to spend money and to bring gifts but sustainable in the fact that the local individuals are going to be able to make it a profitable venture for themselves, that the farmers are going to be self-sufficient,” Smith said.

Among the projects, Smith has been working with farmers to increase the output of rice without planting more rice.

He returned to the United States in July.

He will be leaving for another short trip in a few weeks.