About 25 level 300 students of Crescent University, Abeokuta, traveled all the way from Nigeria to Accra to learn about the work of the United Nations in Ghana. For the students, most of whom are studying Political Science and International Relations, this is a mandated exercise that offers them an opportunity to learn how international organisations, governments and other national institutions outside their country operate.
Although it is an academic requirement, it was fun and a learning curve for many of them. “Being in school is not only about reading. We need to gain practical experience and see how things are done to shape our world” says Agboola Abdul Azeez, a student.
The students interacted with the UN Communications Group and learned about the UN Ghana focus areas as contained in the UN Sustainable Development Partnership document. The UNCG in turns expounded on issues transforming our world including the SDGs, Climate Change, youth engagement and data access.
“United Nations in Ghana considers partnership as key to achieving its objectives and therefore the SDGs” says the Chair of the UNCG and National Information Officer at the UN Information Centre (UNIC) Accra, Ms. Cynthia Prah. “We do not work alone. We work with governments, NGOs and CSOs, academia and youth groups, among others.” She added.
The UNCG invited some 20 UN student group members from the University of Ghana to take part in this outreach session to allow for further engagement and network amongst the students. The session was very interactive and educative with students from both sides seeking clarity on how the UN is tackling climate change challenges and its data collection methods for instance.
“I have learned a lot today. I can now summarise the SDGs with the 5Ps – people, planet, partnership, prosperity and peace” says Sodipo Aminat Adenike.
The leader of the delegation and Lecturer in Political Science and International Relations, Ebenezer Oluwole Oni, expressed gratitude to the UN in Ghana for hosting the students. He noted that “there is no doubt that the students have been exposed to the systems and operations of the UN and he looks forward to the students’ report after their trip”.
Present at the briefing were representatives from each UN agency. The session forms part of the UN4U initiative which is one of the major means through which the United Nations in Ghana reaches out to the public about its activities and the Sustainable Development Goals.