City Skyline with tall buildings

Southern Africa

Nation Building, Globalization, and Decolonizing the Mind

Available in spring and fall semesters.

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Namibia and South Africa provide a rich context in which to explore the theme of nation-building as these two countries demonstrate that the transition to independence is both a beautiful and painful process. Students learn about historical and present-day challenges in creating national identity, an inclusive multi-party democracy, and a model for development.  Studying Namibia and South Africa’s model and approach to such issues provides a useful context for understanding globalization and nation-building struggles throughout the world.


  • Academic discussions centered on building a nation and identity amidst challenges such as underdevelopment, extreme inequality, and painful racial and colonial legacies
  • Impact of gender, race, culture, and identity on democratic processes, human rights issues, and social and economic advancement today
  • Homestays with both rural and urban host families to add to the in-depth cultural experience. When not with host families, students stay in the CGEE house, a 10-minute walk from downtown Windhoek
  • Internships (for credit; unpaid) are also available
  • In-country excursions (included with program costs). Experience Cape Town and Johannesburg in South Africa; as well as Etosha National Park and Walvis Bay in Namibia

Reviews and Blogs

Check out what our former students say at reviews and reviews. Our Southern Africa blog posts (including a student academic blog) give an on-the-ground look at life and study with our programs. We are also happy to connect you directly with program alumni, upon request.