Mixed experience in Ghana Past Review

By (None) - abroad from 08/30/2012 to 12/13/2012 with

Study Abroad Programs in Ghana

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
this is a difficult question for me. Looking back, I'm very glad I went. I learned a lot about Ghanaian culture and made some strong connections. However, I think a lot of that was dependent on my group. I was able to have intellectual discussions with my peers, but we found ourselves very frustrated with the staff often.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Academic rigor is low with very few resources or academic support. Lectures are very dry with very little discussion aspect. Additionally, intellectual dissection of events we attended was non-existent even after request of discussion. This may have to do with the fact that much of the staff was unable to facilitate this kind of discussion.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Yemi, the program director, even called many of the staff people "incompetent"

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Housing was a hit or miss. I was really lucky that my main homestay was incredible and I was very close with them, however many friends had awful homestays with little support from SIT. My second homestay was pretty bad and there seemed to be little communication between the program and the people hosting students.

* Food:

The food is something that you have to get used to, but by the end I loved a lot of dishes I couldn't stand at the beginning.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I felt very integrated, but this was largely due to activities done outside of the program

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Health care in Ghana is extremely difficult to navigate. I got malaria while I was there and had to wait 6 hours the first day to see a doctor, and 7 hours again the next day. The health care system is very different from what we are used to in the US. While an SIT staff member did accompany me to the doctor, they didn't do much besides sit with me. It may be beneficial for there to be a doctor that SIT has relations with that we could visit. Additionally, our healthcare was never really explained to us, so I ended up paying for everything out of pocket.

* Safety:

I rarely felt unsafe. The only issue was men bothering me, but I eventually learned ways to deal with this and avoid unwanted attention.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? No


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
How many hours per day did you use the language?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
  • Hotel
  • Hostel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Experiential Component
  • Very immersive
  • saw lots of the country
* What could be improved?
  • Staff communication
  • academic focus
  • Organization
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew that the academic aspect would be very different than what I'm used to, and that our staff members wouldn't necessarily be able to answer questions we have.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

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The Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.