Young African Leaders Initiative
The Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders is the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI). YALI was launched in 2010 to further advance young African leaders as they incite progress and prosperity, strengthen democratic governance and boost peace and security across Africa. Beginning the summer of 2014, the Mandela Washington Fellowship has brought young African leaders to the United States for academic coursework and leadership training. The program creates exclusive prospects in Africa for Fellows to implement their new skills in leading organizations, communities and countries.
Since 2014, two thousand young African leaders from every country in Sub Saharan Africa have participated as Fellows in the Mandela Washington Fellowship. Selected from 120,000 applications over the course of three years, the Mandela Washington Fellows represent the extraordinary promise of an emerging generation of entrepreneurs, activists, and public officials. Mandela Washington Fellows have proven track records of leadership and demonstrate a strong commitment to contributing their skills and talents to strengthening and serving their communities.
The Mandela Washington Fellows' training in the U.S. can be seen as a long-term investment in these exceptional young leaders. The YALI network offers continuing opportunities for networking, professional development, and seed funding for entrepreneurs and community service after the 6-week Institute in the Fellows' home countries. Fellows have access to improvement seminars, local and regional networking events, and an online platform for future collaborations.
The Program at Texas Tech
Texas Tech University has received a grant from the U.S. Department of State to train young African leadersin a leadership in public management. After a competitive proposal process, TTU is one of just 27 U.S. colleges and universities chosen for the program.
The grant positions Texas Tech to serve as a host institution for the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders program. Faculty and staff from several areas, including the Office of International Affairs, the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Department of Nutrition, and the Department of Educational Psychology and Leadership, are involved in the public management institute.
TTU is also partnering with various NGO's, along with local leaders in the community, to provide the Fellows with unique and extensive volunteer activities and service projects. The Fellows will be introduced to U.S. models and best practices through a broad mix of leadership development and academic activities, such as classroom sessions, panel discussions, and site visits.