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Stern International Volunteers: Ghana

BSPA-UB 2000 Stern International Volunteers Seminar (3 credits)

SIV Ghana 2016 - new school
Students enrolled in the Stern International Volunteers Seminar traveled to the Woadze-Tsatoe village in the Volta region

As a student in this Spring 2017 course, you will take a 3 credit seminar in which we will explore Ghanaian culture, history and laws focusing on the role of property, human rights and environmental concerns. We will consider the roles of law and business as agents for social change.

Course Overview

SIV Seminar Course (3 credits)
This seminar is a reflective, discussion-based course designed to enrich your experiences while in Ghana. We will seek that objective in several different ways: by identifying the root causes of poverty from a global perspective, considering a variety of concepts and practices relevant to the protection of human rights, property rights and environmental concerns, gaining a greater understanding of the history, culture and economics of Ghana, and participating in a service trip to Accra, Ghana.
  • The course will include an 8-day service trip to Ghana in March 2017 during which we will directly experience our responsibilities and opportunities to make a social impact.
  • This course can count as a Stern Global Business Elective, towards Stern's Social Entrepreneurship Minor & Wagner's Public Policy and Management Minor, or as a General Stern Elective
  • Enrollment is by application only and will be limited to 25 Stern students.
Faculty: Rachel Kowal & Hans Taparia
Course Meeting Time: Thursdays, 9:30am-10:45am


  • Stern Freshmen, Sophomores, *Juniors and Seniors in good standing with Stern and the University
    • The MULT-UB 11 International Studies Program (ISP) course is required for all B.S. in Business students, however the ISP trip is optional.
    • Since the SIV trip to Accra is over Spring Break, Juniors who are accepted into the SIV program will travel to Accra instead of traveling on ISP.
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Students must be based in New York City during the course term and throughout the service trip's entirety.

Travel Details

Tentative Travel Dates
  • Spring Break: March 10 - March 18, 2017
    • NYU Stern will be partnering with NYU Accra. Students and faculty will be housed in NYU dorms and hotels throughout their travels in Ghana.The trip will include historical, business and cultural experiences, as well as volunteer opportunities.

Estimated Expenses

Estimated Expenses (for which students are financially responsible):
  • A Trip Program Fee (estimated $1700)* will be required of all participants.
    • Please note: Although you will be registered for this 3 credit course as part of your Spring 2017 schedule, NYU tuition and registration fees do not cover the additional program fee for the trip to Ghana.
  • Additional Expenses to be covered by student (not included in Trip Fee):
  • Airfare to and from Ghana (approximately $1500)
  • Passport fees (if applicaple - approximately $75-100)
  • Visa fees
  • Vaccinations (approximately $300)
  • Personal expenses
*Limited Stern travel scholarships are available and will be awarded based on financial need. Students must have an updated FAFSA or CSS Profile on file with NYU.
A short statement of need (less than 300 words) should be submitted with your application.  Please note: Stern travel scholarships can only be awarded to Stern students.


Application Process & Timing
  • All interested students should complete the SIV Ghana Application 2017
  • All applications must include:
    • Completed application form
    • Typed responses to one essay question
    • Statement of need (if applying for a travel scholarship)
  • Late and/or incomplete applications will not be considered.
    **Please keep personal information separate from your responses to assist in the review process**
  • All applications must be submitted by 4:00pm on Friday, October 28, 2016. Applications can be submitted to Skye Weis in the Business and Society Program, 44 West 4th Street, KMC 7-150. If you are applying for a travel scholarship, please include your statement of need with your application.
  • Interviews will take place during October 31- November 4, 2016
  • Applicants will be notified of their acceptance (and stipend award information, if applicable) by Tuesday, November 8.
  • Accepted applicants must secure their spot in the program by submitting all payments and forms by Monday, November 14th in order to be registered for the Spring 2017 course during course registration (the week of November 14th). Students will be manually registered for the course by the UG Dean's office by November 18th.

Frequently Asked Questions

I'm studying abroad this semester. Can I still apply? How is the process different?
You can absolutely apply! Please download and complete the application available under the Apply section of this page. Completed applications may be emailed to Skye Weis (

Should I take this course as a freshman, sophomore, junior or senior?
It's up to you! Where you are in your academic career, your course loads and your summer plans are some things to keep in mind as you consider which year to take this course. Something to keep in mind: this is the only course open to freshmen with a travel component.
Last year, our students included a mix of students!

I've been accepted and submitted all of my paperwork. Now what?
Once you've submitted all of your trip paperwork and have paid your trip fee, you will be MANUALLY registered by the UG Dean's office. Please be sure you leave room in your schedule.

I'm a vegetarian. Will there be vegetarian meals available on the trip?
Yes! There is a vegetarian option available at every meal.
If you have questions about other dietary restrictions, please email Skye Weis (

Will I get sick from eating the food/drinking the water?
Not likely. All food on the trip is catered or from vetted/approved providers and students only drink bottled water, which is readily available to them, even on the buses.

Have a question that you don't see answered here? Email Skye Weis at


Skye Weis
Administrative Assistant
Business & Society Program
KMC 7-150
Phone: 212-998-0048

Late and incomplete applications will not be considered.

Questions? Contact Prof. Kowal at, Prof. Taparia at or Skye Weis at

Deadline Extended!

Application Deadline has been Extended!

Please bring completed SIV Ghana applications to KMC 7-150 by 4pm on Friday, October 28!

Special Note:

This course is open to all Stern students - including JUNIORS!
  • The MULT-UB 11 International Studies Program (ISP) course is required for all B.S. in Business students, however the ISP trip is optional.
  • Since the SIV trip to Accra is over Spring Break, Juniors who are accepted into the SIV program will travel to Accra instead of traveling on ISP.

Want to See More?

Check out our SIV Ghana 2016 Video!