Deputy Minister of Education Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has called for the deepening and strengthening of ties between Ghana and the United States of America.
He said the two nations could collaborate in many areas, such as student exchange programmes and come out with solutions to the challenges that confront international students.
Mr Ablakwa made the call in Accra at the US Higher Education Students Fair in which 25 tertiary institutions from the US and more than 2,000 prospective Ghanaian students participated.
He explained: “We do not want this to be an issue of only enrolling or admitting students, but we want to keep the US universities and our Ghanaian universities engaged.
“There are about 2,300 Ghanaian students studying in the US and we are happy to also state that we welcome many international students,” Mr Ablakwa stated.
He said both nations had a good history, a good reputation for welcoming foreign students; which could be attributed to their shared values.
“We are peaceful nations, we are very warm people, we have stability going on for us, and the opportunity that we have for our students to network to keep this conversation going, has always proven to be useful,” he said.
Mr Ablakwa said statistics showed that there were over 10,300 international students from 60 different countries studying in Ghana, and advised students to take advantage of the opportunity offered them at the Fair.
The Deputy Minister said the government through the GETFund (Ghana Education Trust Fund) and the Scholarship Secretariat spent $20 million annually in training students abroad, which they hope to make available for training students locally also.
The US Government’s delegation to the Fair was led by Mr Marcus Jadotte, the US Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Analysis.
This mission offers the delegation the opportunity to interact with Ghanaian students, learn more about their educational goals and interests, and share opportunities that US institutions have available.
Mr Jadotte said the motivation behind the fair was driven by the cordial relationship between the US and Ghana, stating that the schools were not only looking out for students, but also for mutual partnerships.
“We have certainly seen in Ghana a growing response from students exploring opportunities to pursue higher education in the US,” he said.
Assistant Secretary Jadotte also met with faculty members and students of the Webster University Ghana, the American Chamber of Commerce Ghana, and visited the Meltwater School of Entrepreneurial Technology.