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Duquesne to Launch New Minor in African Studies This Fall

Beginning this fall, students across Duquesne University will have the opportunity to minor in African Studies. The interdisciplinary program will offer a broad selection of courses on Africa that also can be taken to fulfill University and school core requirements or as electives, if students are unable to commit to the full requirements of the minor.

Through studying Africa-its traditions, cultures, and contemporary and historic issues-students will gain cross-cultural perspectives that are invaluable in the global marketplace.

"We live in a very globalized context in which products crisscross the world on a regular basis," said Dr. Gerald Boodoo, director of the Center for African Studies. "Engaging Africa through this program will help our students understand a part of the world that we don't often study. It will give them an edge in their studies and in their careers."

Kayla Witkowski, a junior nursing student, will take Introduction to African Studies in Spring 2014 and will travel to Ghana for a study-abroad course, Faith and Reason, to be led by Boodoo next May.

"This is a perfect opportunity for broadening my intercultural perspective," Witkowski said. "The African culture really interested me, especially because of the sense of community, striving for the betterment of the whole versus the individual. I think that perspective is really going to help me in my career as a nurse."

The summer breakaway course fulfills the University core curriculum theme area of Faith and Reason. Boodoo will lead students for two weeks through locations such as the slave fortresses on the Cape Coast, the Ashanti Kingdom in Kumasi and the capital city of Accra.

Beyond benefits to individual students, the new program also furthers Duquesne's strategic goal of placing a new emphasis on Africa and the African diaspora.

"It's an initiative to re-engage the African context on an academic level and also on a relational level through student engagement, study abroad and faculty involvement," Boodoo said.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.