This is a proposal to the National Resource Centers and Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowships Programs for grants for the African Studies Program and Institute for the African Child at Ohio University. African Studies is a comprehensive degree granting interdisciplinary unit at Ohio with 47 affiliated faculty in 32 departments and programs. The African Studies Program offers the Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Master of Arts (MA) degrees in African Studies and is affiliated with PhD granting departments in Communication, Education, and African Arts and Literatures, and Contemporary History. The program now offers nine African languages (Amharic, Arabic, Akan, Kikuyu, Pulaar, Somali, Swahili, Sudanese Arabic, Tigrinya and Wolof), with a special focus on the languages of Muslim Africa and materials development for same. The primary theme of African Studies at Ohio is represented by the Institute for the African Child. The Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Communication, Education, Health and Human Services, and Osteopathic Medicine coordinate the Institute and provide the faculty for its interdisciplinary courses, research, publications, and conferences on themes like "Children of Muslim Africa" or "Sports and Youth in Africa." The Institute for the African Child was founded to promote a future orientation in African Studies; as well as, to target our scholarly efforts and outreach around the world's most marginalized social group. We have study abroad and/or linkage programs with the following countries: Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa; with specialized connections in teacher training, clinical medicine, library development, public administration, and business.
Language is central to the development of this project as we seek to increase interest and enrollments in the languages of Africa, which are exclusively less commonly taught languages in the U.S. higher education system. We strive for excellence in teaching by providing African Language Teaching Fellowships to launch recent graduates in relevant fields to two years of full-time teaching in our program. We also launch Sudanese Arabic materials development with U MD Eastern Shore, an HBCU, and Akan pedagogy improvement with a staff member of the University of Ghana.
In the area of outreach, we have a long-term commitment to the Africanization of the training of teachers. We have five Africanist faculty members in the College of Education working to include Africa in the teacher preparation curriculum and a 25 -year history of service to schools in southern Ohio and West Virginia through our Ohio Valley International Council. We propose here to produce an hour-long documentary comparing Islamic lives in Africa and Southeast Asia, and to send our African Business Executive in Residence to present on how to improve business relations with Africa.
The main theme of this proposal is to advance African Studies through the specific improvement of its technological prowess and by bringing the Arts more into the academic curriculum through the development of a new PhD program in the African Arts and Literatures. We also see funds to hire Africanists in Biomedical Sciences, Art History, and Anthropology; to deepen our strengths in those fields. Our library has one of the 20 best Africa collections among U.S. university libraries, sustained through an innovative internship program with African universities and strategic acquisitions.