The continent of Africa, three times the size of the continental U.S., is diverse culturally, linguistically and politically. The country of Botswana, located in southern Africa, is in many ways illustrative of this diversity. In contrast to the post-independence experience of many African countries, Botswana has enjoyed uninterrupted civilian leadership since gaining independence in 1966. Through careful long-range planning, progressive social policies, and significant investment in education, Botswana has emerged as one of the most dynamic economies in Africa, and is becoming a favored ecotourist destination.
The ACM Botswana program is centered at the University of Botswana in Gaborone, the nation’s capital, largest city, and center of its economic and political life. Gaborone prides itself on being one of the fastest-growing cities in Africa, and currently has a population of approximately 200,000. Gaborone is located in southeastern Botswana, situated between the Kgale and Oodi Hills, on the Notwane River. Several nature reserves and ecological parks are located in and around the area surrounding Gaborone.
The University of Botswana (UB) is the oldest institution of higher education in Botswana. UB was originally part of a larger university system founded in 1964, which included Swaziland and Lesotho. In 1982, the University of Botswana was officially established. Today, the university is home to over 14,000 students and over 2,500 faculty and staff.
The University of Botswana campus
ACM students live on-campus in student dormitories for the duration of the program, and their academic experience is centered on the UB campus. Along with the ACM visiting faculty director, students work closely with the Office of International Education and Partnerships to register for classes, attend field trips, and for other student services. The campus is one of the most modern in Africa, with computer facilities, a number of smart classrooms, a student union, library, and several cafeterias. Students often spend time volunteering, both on- and off-campus, and are involved in intramural sports and other student groups.
The main "mall" area in central Gaborone.
Students find the people of Botswana, called Batswana, involved in the enterprise of educating the nation and preparing it to confront the demands of 21st century globalization.