Webster University will open its first campus in Africa this spring. The new campus, in Accra, Ghana, will be one of 43 private universities in Ghana, more than half of which are also located in Accra, according to the National Accreditation Board of Ghana.
A recent change in Ghana tax law may put some of those private universities at a disadvantage this school year.
Private, for-profit, universities in Ghana are expected to be taxed 25 percent on all earnings. Universities in Ghana were previously tax-exempt regardless of their business model.
The Private Universities Students’ Association of Ghana and the National Union of Ghana Students told The Journal that they are petitioning the government to rescind the change in tax law. The two groups are concerned for-profit universities will raise tuition in order to counter the 25 percent tax, and Ghanaian students will be the ones to incur the brunt of the charges.
Webster won’t be affected by the new tax, because it is a nonprofit institution.
Ghana is expecting a record-breaking high school graduating class in the spring. An estimated 409,000 students will seek admissions into colleges in Ghana next year, according to Ghanaian news sources.
Webster University Ghana will be accepting students in January, pending accreditation from the U.S. Higher Learning Commission (HLC).
Without HLC approval, students would not receive degrees recognized by the United States. Webster is waiting on HLC approval before it will open its new campus. Once HLC approval is granted graduates of the Ghana campus will earn degrees recognized by both Ghana and the U.S.
Webster University Ghana will offer an MBA, an MA in International relations and three undergraduate degrees—international business, international relations and media communications. The programs offered at the Ghana campus will be aligned with Webster’s campuses in the U.S., and abroad.
Webster University Ghana is located in the country’s capital, Accra, a major West African hub on the coast of the Gulf of Guinea.