Students accepted for Ghana field school will study historic Elmina Castle


Students interested in an exciting overseas experience this summer — and earning six academic credits as well — can apply now to participate in the Ghana field school organized by Renato Perucchio, professor of mechanical engineering and director of the Archaeology, Technology, and Historical Structures program.

From May 28 to July 1, ten to 15 undergraduate and graduate students in engineering, the social sciences, and the humanities will launch a multidisciplinary study of historic Elmina Castle on Ghana’s Atlantic Coast, engaging in structural analysis, historical and cultural context, surveying, and 2D and 3D modeling. There will be visits to eight other sites as well. Michael Jarvis, director of digital media studies who has similar projects underway in Bermuda, will be part of the team. The field school, entitled Digital Archaeology of Heritage Buildings of West Africa, will be conducted in collaboration with the University of Ghana. Click here for the syllabus.


The goal is to initiate a comprehensive multi-year multi-disciplinary study of not only Elmina Castle, but Cape Coast Castle, Fort Amsterdam, Fort Williams, Fort James and the Christiansborg Castle, all of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites found along the coast of Ghana.

Built in 1482 by the Portuguese Crown as São Jorge da Mina, Elmina Castle is the oldest permanent structure constructed by Europeans in Sub-Saharan Africa, and the first in a long series of fortified trading bases that various European countries established along the West Coast of Africa.

Deadline to apply for this  field school is March 31; applications received before 10 March will be accepted on a rolling basis.

It is recommended that students contact Prof. Perucchio at before enrolling at the program page at the University of Rochester Education Abroad website.