Dailin Morfa ’24, a global commerce and Black studies double major, talks about her spring 2023 study abroad semester in Accra, Ghana, with the School for International Ghana program: Globalization, Cultural Legacies & the Afro-Chic.

More about Dailin Morfa ’24:

  • Hometown: Boston
  • Global commerce regional focus area: Transregional-Africa & Latin America/Caribbean
  • Global commerce language study: Portuguese

Why did you choose to study in Ghana to fulfill your global commerce off-campus study requirement?

With being a global commerce and Black studies double major, I felt the School for International (SIT) program in Ghana would be not only interesting, but the right fit for my transregional focus on the Africa and Latin America/Caribbean regions. The program allowed me to look more into the African diaspora through the lens of West Africa’s culture and the long-lasting impact of the trans-Atlantic slave trade.

What did you enjoy most about the program?

The SIT program heavily emphasizes the experiential component and immerses its students in the culture outside of class. Even the lectures added to the experiences not only in Ghana, but also in the lessons to take home.

In addition, I met many people who taught me so much! Esther, one of the program staff members, helped me get around Ghana and showed me how to fully integrate myself in the culture. My host mother, Ofuriwaa, was incredibly welcoming, and she and her family introduced me to new foods and took me to places like the beach and salsa dancing. These are moments I will forever cherish.

How did your Denison studies prepare you for being abroad?

The courses in both my majors have taught me to approach subjects open-mindedly, to listen before I speak, and to think critically to problem solve.

During my last month, I completed an independent study project on the misallocation of funds and how it affected the well-being of Ghanaians in the East Legon neighborhood of Accra. Due to the language barrier, I couldn’t have the full discussions with people that I needed for my research. My solution was to incorporate Google forms alongside the interviews, and this helped me bridge the communication issues and build connections that still exist to this day.

Were there any difficult times during your study abroad experience?

Ever since my Commerce & Society class with Dr. Burch, I knew I wanted to go somewhere in Africa. Ghana was not an ordinary choice, and I had some internal struggles with that choice, as well as a lot of back and forth with my friends, family, and peers. But I will never regret studying in Ghana. The faculty and staff made it home, as did my homestay family and the friends I made.

What were your takeaways from the experience?

By going into a new space and culture, I learned so much about myself. I learned that I had to be open-minded, whether it was trying new foods or finding new ways of living. I learned to rely on myself to get tasks accomplished and not stress over things I might not be in full control of. I learned I could allow myself to be more outgoing, but still set boundaries. And I found that Ghana is now another home to me. I will never forget how it made me a better person.

April 10, 2024