Ghana: Social Work

*Please note:  The next time this program will run is Spring/Summer 2023. Details below are subject to change.

ACCRA, GHANA - This program aims to prepare students for competent social work practitioners in both domestic and international arenas of social welfare, by engaging Ghanaian counterparts in local villages, five days of volunteer experiences, and offering numerous cultural excursions. These components will enhance students’ understanding of civic and global responsibility through a new cultural lens. Although students will spend the majority of this experience in Accra, the capital of Ghana, they will also spend time in Kumasi and Cape coast for further education and cultural experiences. 

Program Highlights: 

- Volunteer in various venues (hospitals. orphanages, schools, multi-service organizations)

- Explore a local village, the historic slave castles, Kakum National Park, markets, churches, local businesses, and more 

- Excursions to Krobo Odumase, Kumasi and Cape Coast 

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Image 1 of 3 Ghana SW
GPA Requirement
2.0 Undergraduate
3.0 Graduate
English Language Requirement
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Program Dates and Application Deadline

Spring/Summer 2023

Program Dates: May 7, 2023 - May 21, 2023
Application Deadline: February 1, 2023 (Closed)

(3 weeks)



Students will register for a total of 3 credits:


SW 354: International Service (3 credits)

Fulfills General Education Global Perspectives requirement.

Fulfills (1) General Education Issues course requirement. Reflection required.


SW 630: Social Work Global Service Learning (3 credits)

Language of Instruction: English



Students will stay in university housing in Accra and Cape Coast in double or triple occupancy rooms.


Cost and Scholarships



Program Fee: $3,900


  • Round-trip airfare from Grand Rapids
  • Accommodations
  • Some meals
  • All excursions and field trips
  • All ground transportation

Other Expenses

  • Tuition ($1,845-Undergraduate OR $2,184-Graduate)
  • Immunization ($400)
  • Personal expenses ($300)
  • Additional meals ($200)
  • Passport/photos ($200)
  • ISIC card - optional ($28)

TOTAL PROJECTED COST (Program Fee + Other Expenses): $6,845  (Undergraduate) OR $7,184 (Graduate)


Students may fund study abroad by using financial aid, scholarships, grants and personal funds. A study abroad adviser can help you create a funding plan.

FACULTY-LED PROGRAM GRANT (Up to $1,500): All degree-seeking students who apply to their faculty-led program by the priority deadline are automatically considered for a grant of up to $1,500 from the Padnos International Center. Students must have a current FAFSA on file to be eligible. No application required.

James F. and Virginia L. Goode Global Programs Scholarship: The purpose of the scholarship is to reduce the financial pressure on students and their families and make a Grand Valley education accessible to students from all backgrounds. This need-based scholarship will ensure that financial need does not become a barrier to intellectual and personal growth for students planning to study abroad.

To apply for scholarships, visit the Study Abroad Scholarshipspage or  GVSU MyScholarships.


To contact the Financial Aid office, email [email protected] with “Study Abroad” in the Subject line. Include your G Number and Total Projected Cost of the program in the e-mail. 

Non-GVSU Students: Non-GVSU students admitted for study abroad are not eligible for Financial Aid from GVSU. Check with your home school’s study abroad and financial aid offices for details on applying for financial aid from your home school toward study abroad program costs. 

Financial Aid FAQ


This program is open to all BSW, MSW students as well as other majors. Selected participants must complete an interview with the program director before final acceptance. 

Open to graduate students.

GPA required: 2.0 GPA (Undergraduate) or 3.0 GPA (Graduate)

GVSU is happy to extend this opportunity to Non-GVSU Students.

Additional Information


Excursions to Krobo Odumase, Kumasi and Cape Coast included in this program. 

Already Applied

CDC Report

CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same.

Checkout CDC Report For Ghana

US State Department Information

The first step to an international trip is to read our Traveler’s Checklist to find out things to consider before you go. Pay special attention to our safety and security information and assess for yourself the risk of traveling to a particular country or region.  Some U.S. citizens with special considerations – such as students, women, and LGBTI travelers – may face additional challenges when abroad.  If you do decide to travel, make a plan for what to do if something goes wrong overseas. 

Checkout US State Department Information For Ghana

Contact Information

Spring/Summer 2023
Dianne Green-Smith
Program Director

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