In The Light: Louis Mensah



For Louis Mensah, choosing Colgate required no strenuous effort.

“I read about Colgate in a college prep book,” explained the senior, an international student from Tema, Ghana. “I visited the school’s website frequently – alright, well, maybe only once or twice.”

A computer science major and French mi­nor, Mensah is interested in the differences be­tween education in the U.S. and in his native country. When he returned home to Ghana in the summer of 2009, Mensah conducted a research project examining the challenges of higher education in Africa.

He continued his research when he re­turned to Colgate. Under the guidance of Professor of Anthropology and Africana & Latin American Studies Mary Moran, the se­nior is currently investigating the brain drain that occurs in colleges in Africa.

“I want to go to grad school and then return home to work on improving Africa,” said Mensah, who plans to pursue a dual mas­ter’s degree in Management and Public Policy. His involvement with Colgate’s Model Afri­can Union has allowed the senior to practice working towards his goal.

“I love Model African Union. We go to Howard University in D.C. every year and debate many interesting topics,” Mensah said.

Mensah serves as a student advisor for the Colgate Activities Board (CAB) and a mem­ber of the Colgate Christian Fellowship. Last spring, he went abroad to Dijon with Profes­sor of Romance Languages and Literatures John Naughton.

“I’d never been to Europe before studying in Dijon,” said Mensah. “I traveled to Zurich, Berlin, Prague, Vienna and all around France. It was great.”

Looking back, Mensah cites his Challenge of Modernity class, taken with Senior Lecturer in University Studies Tom Howard, to be one of his favorite experiences at Colgate.

“It was such a different approach to mo­dernity and had a strong emphasis on dis­cussion,” Mensah explained. “In Ghana, students are unable to express their opinions. To be able to say what you’re thinking is an eye-opener and very empowering.”

The senior believes that the “diverse atmo­sphere of thought” that Colgate fosters is one of the school’s greatest assets.

“I like that Colgate is working hard for all types of diversity and I think they’re doing a good job,” he remarked. “I was taught growing up that everyone else knows more than you do. Being at Colgate showed me that idea isn’t true and that people just know many different things.”

Mensah believes that students should “step up, step out” and take advantage of the opportunities Colgate offers.

“Just go find and find out what’s waiting for you.”