Service Learning is one of the most dynamic areas within the field of international education. These days, students who apply for study abroad programs are less interested in just sitting in classrooms for long hours or simply taking long field trips to visit the wide variety of historical and contemporary sites most countries have to offer. Instead, students who study abroad today are more interested in learning by doing, i.e., working in areas related to their academic interests and/or contributing their time, talent, knowledge and labour towards helping communities help themselves. Moreover, by working alongside their foreign counterparts and/or other local residents in foreign lands, students are better able to immerse themselves, culturally, into the countries they visit.
For students interested in participating in a service-learning program, the Aya Centre can arrange both the classes and the related internship experiences. Ghana is an ideal location for this model of academic training because of its immense socio-economic challenges in a variety of areas—including health, education, environment, gender, youth, and many others. What better way for students to learn what they are studying in their books than by doing it in the field?
Below are a two unedited ‘testimonials’ from students who recently interned at local institutions in Ghana, arranged by the Aya Centre, during their semester abroad.