Babson undergrads in Ghana to teach entrepreneurship
Babson Undergraduate Dean Dennis Hanno and 40 students, faculty and staff are spending winter break in Ghana, teaching entrepreneurship and business to high school students and adult learners.
The program, begun nine years ago while Hanno was at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, has grown from 12 student participants creating a computer center in a village church, to 26 Babson undergrads, 9 MBA students, three Babson faculty and staff and two outside consultants teaching business basics to over 1000 Ghanaian learners from high school age to adult. The Babson undergraduate students on the trip consist of 10 sophomores, 2 juniors and 14 seniors.
Designed to boost business development opportunities in the area, students are split into teams to teach local high school students during the day; and at night, the students, faculty and staff volunteers teach local business community members. The week culminates with a regional business plan competition sponsored by Babson, with cash prizes awarded to the three winning schools. The top winner this year will also win a trophy, the Babson Cup.
As the program has developed, so has interest from corporate sponsors. This year three schools coordinated by Babson College and the Nyansa Project will have new computer facilities fully-funded on behalf of PricewaterhouseCoopers, StoneTurn Group and Vitale, Caturano & Company.
“When the project started, the primary goal of the trip was to work with interested students to help them learn about entrepreneurship, business planning and personal development, but much more than that happens,” says Dean Hanno. “Friendships and bonds are formed and the knowledge shared during the two weeks will last a lifetime – on both sides of the ocean. This amazing and impactful experience really is global citizenship at its finest.”