(Dates and prices subject to change)
This course is open to COF students.
West African History, Culture & Spirituality: Re-Tracing the Triangular Trade: Cape Verde, Ghana and Bénin is a Service Learning program involving students in literacy teaching and Digital training of local students in the three countries specified. It will build on Wheelock’s previous projects teaching literacy in Ghana and Bénin and on the digital technology training program begun in Ghana at Cape Coast University High School in 2014. Both the literacy teaching and the digital technology training will be augmented and expanded in Cape Verde as well as Bénin, all of which leads to the establishment of the Digital Ananse-SEM Institute to be initiated in Ghana in 2016. The three countries of West Africa identified have vital connections to the USA and to the Americas in general in the building of the Atlantic World. They all played a key role as transshipment points for the forced migration of African people to the Western Hemisphere and thus to their influence on the development of the economies, histories, and cultures of North and South America and the Caribbean. Students will be involved in both teaching English literacy at Misserete Secondary School in Benin and at the First Lady of Cape Verde’s High School for girls. This is a school which she established to offer educational opportunities to girls who have gotten pregnant or had other hardships with regular school. Wheelock students will have an opportunity to engage with the students and their parents and apply their learning from Wheelock, as well as learn and appreciate the community and its issues facing civil society today.
In addition, Wheelock students will be involved in the countries and in training, collecting, and digitally- recording visits and oral history accounts at historic sites like Fortress of Sao Filipe (Cape Verde), Cape Coast Castle-Dungeons in Ghana, and Ouidah’s Gateway of No Return in Bénin---all of which are UNESCO-designated sites of the trans Atlantic Slave Trade. In the Digi –story Media component, Wheelock students teach Media Literacy, Media production, and how to digitize Indigenous storytelling. In each country, Wheelock students will have conversations with members of Parliament and local leaders of the community, as well as work with their colleagues from the local universities: Amilcar Cabral University in Cape Verde, The University of Cape Coast, in Ghana, and the Universite d’Abomey-Calavi in Benin. Video data is collected during each program for assessment and the production of a documentary of the trip. These digital collections will be made into a documentary for use at Wheelock and for showing at the “Digi-Story Institute,” to be held at Cape Coast University in Ghana later in the summer of 2016.
Dr. Joyce Hope Scott is the Associate Professor of American Studies. Joyce Hope Scott teaches American popular culture, African-American & Caribbean literature, African American theatre, and an international service learning/travel course to Ghana and Benin. She has extensive background and years of experience in the countries of West Africa and in African history and culture. Her long-term commitment to internationalization of the American educational experience, as well as her general interest in the "multi-voiced narrative" of U.S. history, has led her to lecturing and research opportunities across the U.S. and in many countries around the world.
Dan Okyere Owusu is a Ghanaian born artist and filmmaker, and the Instructor of Video Production, Animation, Digital Design, and New Media Production at Wheelock College. He has worked with young people since the late 1990s in different artistic fields, such as visual arts, graphic arts, film and video, and more recently, 3d Motion Graphics. He comes from a family of Ghanaian educators and storytellers. He occasionally works with staff at the National Film and Television Institute in Ghana to continuously develop a Video Production major for NAFTI.
** Indicates rolling admission application process. Students will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.