Accra, GHANA— Demonstrating the strong people-to-people and educational ties between the United States and Ghana, the number of Ghanaians studying in the United States continues a strong upward trend. The Institute for International Education releases their Open Doors report annually during International Education Week, celebrated this year from November 16-20. On a positive note, the 2020 report has shown a 15.3% increase during the 2019-20 academic year in the number of Ghanaian students attending universities and colleges in the United States over the previous year. Ghana retains the number two spot in sub-Saharan Africa, with the number of Ghanaian students increasing from 3,661 to 4,221. The number one spot is held by Nigeria, with a 2.5% increase from 13,423 in 2018-19 to 13,762 students in 2019-20.
According to the 2020 Open Doors Report, the United States hosted over 1 million international students for the fifth consecutive year. Sub-Saharan Africa continues to represent an area of growth, with 41,697 students in 2019-20, marking a 3.5 % increase over the prior year. Amidst declining numbers of international study in other regions, sub-Saharan Africa stands out for its percentage of growth. The giants of West Africa, Ghana, and Nigeria, contributed significantly to the increased numbers in the region.
Notably, nearly half of the Ghanaian students in the United States are studying at the graduate level, and this number increased by 22% over last year, from 1,860 to 2,270. As a result, Ghana moved from the ranking of 25 to 21 in terms of the highest sending countries worldwide for graduate studies in the United States.
The five most popular U.S. states for Ghanaian students are Ohio, New York, Illinois, Massachusetts, and Michigan.
More than half of all international students pursued majors in the STEM fields, while other popular fields of study include business and management, social sciences, health professions, and foreign language and international studies. For additional information on the 2020 Open Doors Report, please visit https://www.iie.org/Research-and-Insights/Open-Doors.
As part of the U.S. Embassy’s ongoing engagement to facilitate study in the United States, EducationUSA Advisors in Accra and Kumasi conduct regular information sessions and outreach to students. In 2019, the U.S. Embassy welcomed over 50 American institutions of higher education to a college fair in Accra that attracted nearly 1,500 students. This year, EducationUSA is hosting a virtual college fair on November 18-19, 2020 with over 130 participating U.S. universities and colleges. Ghanaians have been invited to attend this sub-Saharan Africa college fair by following the EducationUSA Africa Connection Facebook page @EducationUSAAfricaConnection.
Ghanaians interested in studying in the United States are encouraged to follow the U.S. Embassy Facebook @USEmbassyGhana for virtual information sessions. More information can also be found here: https://gh.usembassy.gov/education-culture/educationusa-center/.