Bordered by Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Togo and the Gulf of Guinea, Ghana is one of top destinations in Western Africa to study abroad. Its nickname, the "Gold Coast", appropriately refers to both its flourishing natural gold resources and the landscape’s vast beauty. The country’s namesake means “Warrior King”, but by the outward friendliness of Ghanaian locals towards travelers, locals may seem anything but.
Historically, evidence of a number of merchant states in what is now known as Ghana are thought to have been founded on the exchange of the region’s resources, primarily gold. This resource was discovered first by Portuguese explorers, and when word spread, many other European countries staked their claim into the area for the purpose of exporting goods and later colonization. After centuries of warfare against the settlers and resistance against British rule, which had ultimately gained control over the region, Ghana was finally declared an independent nation in 1957. Ghana has since established a strong economy in relation to many other countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, and now functions politically as a democracy.
The landscape of Ghana is home to a number of national parks and wildlife reserves, making the country a great place to study biology, ecology, zoology, or any of the environmental sciences. Students might also be interested in studying related courses in health services, business, economics, education, history, the performing arts or social sciences (not all courses may be offered--please refer to your program description for specific course offerings).
Culture is quite diverse in Ghana, making it fantastic for cultural studies as well. The ancient kingdom of Ashanti has left behind a number of shrines and relics that contrast the castles and forts built by European settlers and merchants. Well-known for its celebrations and festivals, Accra, Ghana’s capital city, is filled with energy and motion that resonates from the echo of banging African drums to the colorful hand-woven Kente cloths sold at every turn.