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Botswana: Development in Southern Africa

Gaborone, Botswana


Dive into a region that’s addressing the challenges of development and contradicting Western stereotypes of African nations. Study politics, economics, and public health at the University of Botswana, learn Setswana language, and explore diverse areas throughout southern Africa. (This program is no longer offered)


Spring semester (mid-January–mid-May)
See full schedule

Who can apply

Undergraduates from any four-year US college or university

Host institution

University of Botswana (UB) in Gaborone

Living arrangements

Program participants live with local students in a UB residence hall.

Courses & credits

Recommended credit is 16 semester credits or the equivalent. See course descriptions

  • Setswana Language
  • Program Director's course
  • Elective at the University of Botswana
  • Independent study project

Language requirement

No prerequisites. Except for the required Setswana language courses, all classes are conducted in English.


Program brochure
Program handbook - Spring 2017

Application deadlines

If the deadline has passed and you are interested in applying, contact the ACM Office immediately. Late applications may be accepted on a space-available basis.

Explore the program

Expand your awareness of other cultures

“The challenges of living each day in Botswana allowed me to become more confident and self-aware. I walked away from my experience with a greater appreciation for my own culture, as well as an appreciation for the culture of the Motswana I interacted with each day.”

Katie Nicholson, Lake Forest College, politics major

Your education in Botswana doesn’t stop after class each day. The people you meet and the challenges you take on will show you that experiencing life abroad is its own unique kind of education.

Explore southern Africa

“It was a once in a lifetime opportunity to travel and see southern Africa while being a student. If you want to be tossed from your comfort zone, this program is for you!”

Mason Schweyen, St. Olaf College, history and economics major

While there are plenty of sights within Gaborone, you will venture outside the city limits to see natural wonders like wetlands and game reserves, and other successful urban centers such as Johannesburg, South Africa.

Personalize your academic experience

“I had amazing experiences in Botswana that I wouldn't have been able to have at my home university. I was able to study and do research at an African university, learn about an entirely new culture, and volunteer at a microfinance institution.”

Molly Adams, Coe College, political science major

In Botswana, learn about topics that pique your interest. Not only will you design your independent study project, but you’ll also engage with that topic hands-on by getting involved with the community. Whether you work at an arts society or volunteer at a health clinic, you will have real world experience to incorporate into your project.

Once-in-a-lifetime experiences

Will Gallmeyer
Knox College

I chose the ACM Botswana program because I wanted to study in an industrializing country and get outside of my "comfort zone". As it turns out, Botswana is a really comfortable place to be! It's a very peaceful country, and people there are very friendly.

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Laura Eberly
University of Chicago

The ACM Botswana program presented me with an array of experiences which, from the phenomenal to the mundane, challenged my understanding of development, Africa, people, and myself.

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Katie Nicholson
Lake Forest College

I walked away from my experience in Botswana with a greater appreciation for my own culture, as well as an appreciation for the culture of the Motswana I interacted with each day.

Read more »

More student experiences »

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