By Elisha Harding
It was disclosed by the U.S. Embassy in Freetown on the 6th June 2022 that Samuel Saidu, James Kpaka, Aminata Kandeh, Alex Bayoh, Precious Lamin, Nyangah Rogers-Wright, Laura Nicol, Adama Sillah and Issa Thullah, all considered to be leaders in various fields, will be participating in the 2022 Mandela Washington Fellowship.
Further revealed by the Embassy was that the 2021 Fellows ,Phebean Swill and Tamba Sangbah, have also been selected to take part in an in-person Alumni Enrichment Institute program as a result of their outstanding performances during their virtual fellowship participation last year.
Launched in 2014, the Mandela Washington Fellowship is the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) and embodies the U.S. commitment to invest in the future of Africa. YALI was created in 2010 and supports young Africans as they spur economic growth and prosperity, strengthen democratic governance, and enhance peace and security across Africa. Since 2014, nearly 5,100 young leaders from every country in Sub-Saharan Africa have participated in the Mandela Washington Fellowship.
Twenty-seven U.S. educational institutions in 20 States and the District of Columbia will host Leadership Institutes for approximately 700 Mandela Washington Fellows. The six-week Institutes, hosted by college and university campuses across the United States, will support the development of Fellows’ leadership skills through academic study, workshops, mentoring, networking with U.S. leaders, and collaboration with members of the local community.
The participants are representatives from various fields including, environment, agriculture, social work/rights-based activism, media, law, public health, and entrepreneurship.
After completing the leadership institute element of their programs, Fellows will participate in a virtual summit. Additionally, up to 100 competitively selected Fellows will virtually engage in professional development with U.S. organizations in the public, private, or non-profit sector. Fellows can participate in alumni programming afterward to further build their professional skills and networks.
The Mandela Washington Fellowship is a program of the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government and administered by IREX. For more information about the Fellowship, visit mandelawashingtonfellowship.org.