A new Lancaster University branch campus in Ghana opened its doors to students this month after being awarded accreditation by Ghana’s National Accreditation Board. It becomes the first British University branch campus in Ghana and is the only one of its kind in West Africa.
Based in the capital city, Accra, Lancaster University Ghana is a collaboration between Lancaster University and Trans National Education Ghana Limited (TNE). The campus will accept students from across West Africa and will be committed to producing graduates who have the skills and knowledge to meet Ghana’s industrial, societal and governmental needs. Mark E. Smith, Vice-Chancellor of Lancaster University, was clear about the benefits that the new campus would bring about for Ghana: “Lancaster University Ghana will contribute to increasing the pool of internationally educated young people, ready to take their places in developing and growing the Ghanaian and wider African economy. It will join existing institutions of higher education to further enhance Ghana’s reputation as an educational hub for West Africa.”
Students at the campus will have the opportunity to study a wide range of subjects including management, law, international relations, computing and psychology. There will also be various postgraduate programmes, including Lancaster’s award winning Global MBA programme.
Lancaster University Ghana students will be able to spend either a semester or a full academic year at Lancaster University and can take part in summer schools based at Lancaster University. They will receive the same degree certificate as they would have achieved had they studied in Lancaster, with their University transcript indicating the location of study of each module.
Teaching began on October 7th 2013 for foundation programmes and teaching. Students will be primarily taught by local staff but Lancaster University staff will teach most modules in postgraduate programmes whilst also providing guest lectures and co-teaching with local staff on some undergraduate programmes.
Addressing prospective students, Smith said that “our new university campus in Ghana will enable you to study for a high quality degree from one of the UK’s top ranked universities and offers students an outstanding learning experience, with the future career benefits of gaining a globally recognised Lancaster degree.”
Speaking to University World News, Geraint Johnes, Dean of Graduate Studies, said the University considered Ghana “a hugely important investment. The potential for further development in the country – and indeed in the broader region – is vast, and Ghana is well placed to provide us with a substantial geographical footprint within Africa.
“A small intake of students is expected to start their studies later this year, and we expect substantial growth in student numbers from 2014 onwards as we broaden provision to cover a wide range of subjects across the arts, sciences, social sciences and management.”
Lancaster University has sought to expand its global outreach and affirm its commitment to internationalism in recent times. Lancaster degree programmes are also taught in India, Pakistan and Malaysia with plans to open a campus in China. Lancaster University Ghana is a continuation of the expansion of Lancaster’s network of overseas teaching partnerships, with Smith believing that “Lancaster is highly regarded for the quality of the education it provides and our thriving alumni network of over 100,000 alumni in 148 countries worldwide are testament to the quality of our degree courses.
Lancaster’s community extends far beyond the campus with research, teaching and student exchange partnerships with leading universities and institutions in 24 countries across the world.”
Joel Pullan, LUSU President, was equally positive about the accreditation of Lancaster University Ghana: “I’m incredibly pleased that we have yet another international partner, and more so that this is the first British University branch campus in Ghana. This will offer many benefits to our students, giving the potential to visit and study in another continent. This very much fits within the University’s Strategic Plan of being a globally significant University, and I hope that Lancaster University Ghana will offer the same high standards in teaching, learning and support as our UK campus.
Rakesh Wahi, founder of TNE, who are partnering with Lancaster University, commented that “this campus is our first education venture in West Africa and shares the group’s vision of creating a network of branch campus experiences in Africa, through quality teaching, state of the art infrastructure, research led curriculum and innovation in delivery of the curriculum.”