Six young Rwandan professionals, on Thursday evening ,left the country for the United States after they were selected to take part in the second session of the Young African Leadership Initiative (YALI) Mandela Washington Fellowship.
According to a statement from the US embassy in Kigali, the young leaders will stay in the US for a period of six weeks studying public management, business and entrepreneurship, and civic leadership.
The fellows, who will spend much of the time at a US institution of higher education, will also use the time to enhance their leadership skills and network with other young leaders from sub-Saharan Africa.
“After an academic residence at the college or university, participants will travel to Washington, D.C., to participate in a Washington Fellows Summit hosted by President Barack Obama and have the opportunity to interact with U.S. leaders in the business, government, and non-profit sectors,” reads part of the statement.
“I congratulate this outstanding group of young Rwandans who will represent their country on the Mandela Washington Fellowship. With their creativity and leadership, Africa has a bright future,” said U.S. ambassador to Rwanda, Erica J. Barks-Ruggles.
YALI is an initiative that empowers a new generation of young Africans to contribute to solving challenges in their communities and the rest of the world.
It also creates a link between Africa and U.S in government, business and other sectors.
This initiative was launched by President Obama in 2010.
Among the 800 applicants who represent a diverse group of leaders already making important contributions to their communities, only six managed to make it to be part of Mandela Fellows. These include; Redempter Batete, Ange Imanishimwe, Merab Twahirwa, Jean Paulin Mutatsineza, Jean Bosco Nzeyimana and Janine Ampulire.
Last year, six Rwandans took part in the same programme.