Freddy Coleman ’17 wanted to do research overseas, so he developed a project that combines his interests in computer science, information systems and Africana studies. Through his Digitizing Africa Project, he studies issues like quality of service and power consumption in Ghana so businesses have the information they need to successfully work there.
Coleman traveled to the country in 2015 and 2016 with the Lehigh in Ghana program to launch his project. In the future, he’s looking to explore issues like cybersecurity in countries in different parts of Africa like Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa.
“Africa is the last frontier and Western models don’t really apply,” says Coleman. For example, he says that in the United States, 80 to 90 percent of people have a landline, but in Ghana, that number is only 2 percent. Almost everybody relies on mobile phones. “You need to have that cultural context for technology to work.”