SIV: Social Entrepreneurship in Ghana

BSPA-UB 2000 SIV: Social Entrepreneurship in Ghana (3 credits)

Students wearing yellow tee-shirts pose in a group
Students enrolled in the SIV: Social Entrepreneurship in Ghana Seminar traveled to the Woadze-Tsatoe village in the Volta region

As a student in this Spring 2020 course (BSPA-UB 2000), you will take a 3 credit seminar in which you will explore the role of business as an agent for social change and apply principles of social entrepreneurship to promote sustainable economic development. SIV Ghana provides a unique educational experience, combining business theory with hands-on implementation and cultural immersion in the country of Ghana. Students will study how to design and implement social entrepreneurship and volunteer projects that support long-term socio-economic development and educational empowerment.  Students will then travel to Ghana over spring break and apply their ideas and business knowledge "on-the ground" in NYU Stern’s partner Ghanaian village, Woadze Tsatoe.

No Application Required!
  • Enrollment is done on Albert 
  • Enrollment is first come, first served – based on your registration time
  • If the course fills up there will be a Waitlist – set up ‘Edit Swap’ function on Albert to ensure you’re not stuck on the waitlist
  • If you successfully enroll you will be contacted via email with next steps - see important dates below

Course Overview

BSPA-UB 2000 SIV Ghana Seminar Course (3 credits)
SIV: Social Entrepreneurship in Ghana - Spring 2020
Professors Kowal & Taparia
Thursdays, 9:30-10:45am, includes one week during Spring Break when the entire class travels to implement business projects in NYU Stern’s partner Ghanaian village – Waodze Tsatoe 

3 credits, counts towards Co-Concentration in Sustainable Business, Social Entrepreneurship Minor, Global Business Concentration & Public Policy and Management Minor

SIV Ghana combines a unique social entrepreneurship experience, hands-on business learning & cultural immersion in Ghana. Students will study how to design and implement social entrepreneurship projects. Students will then directly apply their ideas and business knowledge in NYU Stern’s partner Ghanaian village over spring break. Social impact projects include expanding 3 micro-businesses – a batik cooperative, a clean water business and a mango farm - incubated by previous SIV Ghana classes, implementing educational technology and teaching business skills (accounting, marketing, management & finance). The overall aim of SIV Ghana is to promote sustainability and socio-economic growth in the village of Waodze Tsatoe, Ghana. This will be the sixth year of engagement between SIV Ghana students and the Waodze Tsatoe community.


  • 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 Ghana is over Spring Break, Juniors who are accepted into the SIV program will travel to Ghana instead of traveling on ISP.
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Students must be based in New York City during the Spring 2020 course term and throughout the service trip's entirety.

Course Registration and Important Dates

  • Week of November 11th - Students must register themselves via NYU Albert (open enrollment as long as space remains available in the course)
    Note: All students who register for this class after the week of November 11th must e-mail and submit their trip payment within ten days of registering.
  • Tuesday, November 19th - Scholarship requests due by 12:30 pm
  • Tuesday, December 3rd - Deadline to Submit Contract, Passport copy, and non-refundable Trip Program Fee (see below)
  • January 30, 2020 - May 7, 2020 - Spring class dates in New York: Thursdays, 9:30-10:45am
  • Thursday, March 12th (at night) - Sunday, March 22nd - Trip to Ghana - students must take the group flight
    • NYU Stern will be partnering with NYU Accra. Students and faculty will be housed in hotels throughout their travels in Ghana.The trip will include historical, business and cultural experiences, as well as volunteer opportunities.
Missed the Information Sessions?  Check out the SIV Ghana Info Session Presentation (2019)!

Estimated Expenses

Please note: Although you will be registered for this 3 credit course as part of your Spring 2020 schedule, NYU tuition and registration fees do not cover the additional fees for the trip to Ghana.

Estimated Expenses
Student is Responsible For: Estimated Expenses: Notes:
Trip Program Fee $1,790 Limited scholarships are available (see below)
Round Trip Flight *$1,310  
Passport Renewal / Visa *$110 Passport / *$70 Visa *Estimate - view additional visa fee information
Vaccinations/Travel Medicine *$300 *Estimate - Proof of Yellow Fever vaccination is required to obtain a visa/ Anti-Malaria is also highly recommended
Personal Expenses *$200 *Estimate
  • The Trip Program Fee will be required of all participants. The trip fee will cover:
    • Round trip transportation from/to airport in Ghana, all hotels, service site & cultural activities
    • All Housing (hotels)
    • All Meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
    • Costs to NYU Accra: volunteer experience & supplies to the community

Need-based Travel Scholarships

Stern is pleased to offer a limited number of scholarships to participants who have demonstrated financial need. Scholarship award amounts vary, and are to help students cover the program fee cost.  However, scholarship amounts do not cover flight costs or additional costs not covered by the program fee.  Candidates must have an updated FAFSA or CSS Profile on file at NYU to be considered. To apply for a scholarship, a short statement of need (less than 300 words) will be required.  Please email your Name, N Number, and personal statement to by 12:30 pm on Tuesday, November 19th. Please note: Stern travel scholarships can only be awarded to Stern students.

Frequently Asked Questions

I'm studying abroad this semester. Can I still enroll? How is the process different?
You can absolutely enroll! Please enroll in BSPA-UB 2000 during your regular registration time and e-mail with any questions.

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'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 Kristen Van Vleck at

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 Kristen Van Vleck at

Student Experiences

"SIV allows you to grow personally and develop professionally. During my travels in Ghana, I was challenged to check my biases, privileges, and prejudices. I learned to solve problems in an unfamiliar cultural context, without resources typically available in the city. Most importantly, I made lifelong friends. We continue to remind each other that time on this planet is precious, and that it is our duty to use this time in a meaningful way. There is no better way to start using your life meaningfully than to join SIV."  -- Ron Yakar (BS '20) SIV Ghana Participant in 2017

“SIV Ghana for me has been more than just a class, but a true life-changing experience. This course pushed me in ways that not only have helped me grow during the rest of my time at Stern as a student, but have also helped me career-wise. Having the chance to create something that would make a tangible impact for a real community challenged me to learn more than what could ever be taught in the classroom and experience how business actually functions. I will always be grateful to SIV Ghana for giving me the space to face with my own uncertainties, biases, and fears, and for giving me the space to learn and grow from them beyond textbooks and homework. Overall, SIV Ghana has been more than just the best class I’ve ever taken, but truly one of the best life experiences I’ve had.” -- Sofia Cortez Padilla (BS '20) SIV Ghana Participant in 2017


Kristen Van Vleck
Assistant Director, International Exchanges and Special Programs
NYU Stern School of Business
Undergraduate College
40 West Fourth Street, Tisch Hall, 6th Floor
Suite 600, New York, NY 10012

Questions? Contact:
Asst. Director Kristen Van Vleck at
Prof. Kowal at
Prof. Taparia at