Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Name: Kofi Appiah-Nkansah
Hometown: Kumasi, Ghana
Year: Class of 2009
Major: Bioengineering (Global Citizenship certificate)

Interests/Clubs/Activities: ArtsLehigh Community Drumming Project; FONI Intercultural Literary Journal; Global Union; Peer Educator- Career Services Office; America Reads Program; Global Citizenship Program; Engineers Without Borders; Southside Film Festival Volunteer

What's the best kept secret about Lehigh?
Lehigh students stage great programs and events year round. These programs are so broad in breadth that there is always something for every student to be part of.

What has been your most memorable experience at Lehigh?
Global Citizenship Program: Our classes in the program were interesting, the freshman Intersession Trip was educational and hands-on, the co-curricular events we organized and attended every semester were engaging; but in particular, I met most of my closest friends at Lehigh through the program and we formed strong relationships which will last beyond our time at Lehigh.

My favorite class/professor:
Although I majored in bioengineering, the two International Relations classes I took with Prof. Menon were without doubt my favorite and he made a significant impact on my Lehigh experience. He knows the course material thoroughly, presents it lucidly, and engages students in a very effective way. I could also always walk into Prof. Menon’s office at any time and talk to him even about matters not concerning class and he was always very helpful and supportive.

Why did you choose Lehigh?
I received a scholarship to attend the Pennsylvania Governor’s School for Global Entrepreneurship whilst a high school junior back at home in Ghana. I came to Lehigh for the 5-week summer program and simply loved it. Our classes were taught mostly by Lehigh professors, we slept in the freshman dorms in Lower Cents, and used various other facilities on campus. When I went back to Ghana to finish high school, I could not forget the remarkable experience I had had at Governor’s School and looked forward to coming back for college.

Additionally, Lehigh’s breadth of innovative interdisciplinary programs (I majored in bioengineering) and first-rate facilities coupled with ample academic research were significant to my sustained interest and eventual resolve to apply Early Decision to the school.

How did Lehigh help you transition to life in the US?
Prior to arriving on campus, I was assigned two e-mentors – a fellow international student and an American student. Communicating with these students prior to and even after arriving at Lehigh helped me answer most of the questions I naturally had as an incoming foreign student. These questions ranged from what to pack to how the academic year was structured.

Moreover, the International Student Orientation at the beginning of our freshman year also pointed out where to find various resources at Lehigh and we discussed various topics regarding transitioning to life in the U.S. Finally, the wonderful staff at the Office of International Students and Scholars are always available to assist international students with various issues throughout their time at Lehigh.

What is your favorite location on campus?
Linderman Library: It has a conducive atmosphere for quiet reading with impressive architecture to complement it.

Where's the best food on and off campus?
On campus: Rathbone- Apart from the wide variety of food choices always available at Rathbone, the warm environment and remarkable view of Bethlehem from the glass windows makes the dining experience there quite complete.

Off campus: Tulum and Blue Sky Café- Southside Bethlehem has some very good food places right at the edge of Lehigh. However, my favorite places are Tulum (simple but delicious Mexican food) and Blue Sky Café (breakfast and breakfast-inspired dishes with recently added lunch and dinner options), which is rather interesting since I first visited both places during my final year at Lehigh.