Two weeks after visiting the Lincroft campus and formalizing a mentorship agreement with Brookdale faculty members, Dr. Owusu Duah returned to Brookdale to provide some expert knowledge of his own.
Duah – a pathologist, a former member of the Ghanaian parliament and the founder the Kings Nursing and Allied Health College in Accra, Ghana – gave a free lecture to dozens of Brookdale students on Oct. 21 on the history and culture of his country.
The goal, he said, was to transcend the 5,000-mile divide between America and Ghana and provide students with a unique prospective and a better understanding of the West African nation.
“I was very happy to have this opportunity to interact with the students here at BCC,” said Duah. “People want to know what is happening in countries and learn about cultures that are very far from their own. When you share that knowledge, you lose that anxiety and that fear of the unknown. Instead, you can learn from each other. You can grow.”
That belief is a guiding principle of Brookdale’s Global Citizenship Council (GCC) and the Students for Global Citizenship Club, both of which co-sponsored the lecture. GCC co-founder and Radiologic Technology Professor Terry Konn said she first met Duah a number of years ago through a former Brookdale student.
Since then, Konn and other faculty members have been working with Duah to help develop and expand the health education provided at the Martin Luther Health Training School (MLHTS), which is a subsidiary of Kings in Accra. The school is the first of its kind in Ghana, providing nursing and medical lab technology training to hundreds of West African students over the past eight years.
In early October Duah came to Brookdale to meet with faculty and administrators from a wide range of college departments and divisions and formalize a new partnership with the college.
As part of the partnership, Brookdale faculty have volunteered to provide lesson plans, software and other resources to MLHTS. Konn and others will also travel to Accra in 2016 to work alongside MLHTS faculty and help them adopt Brookdale’s highly effective competency-based teaching methods.
Duah has also offered members of his own faculty as visiting lecturers at Brookdale to share their expertise on tropical diseases, African culture, history, traditional medicine and other topics of interest.
His lecture, which drew students from numerous academic disciplines and was simulcast to students at the Long Branch Higher Education Center, touched on everything from Ghana’s location on a map to its government, economy and culture. He also answered questions from the crowd at the end of the talk.
The lecture was a part of the GCC’s ongoing Global Citizenship Project, which aims to educate and engage the college community in global issues to improve the world we live in.
Another project initiative, announced by members of the Students for Global Citizenship Club, is a drive to build a much-needed well in Rwanda. Club members are encouraging Brookdale community members to “buy a brick” and support the cause. More information on the club is available here.
Click here for more photos of the lecture.