The Nelson Mandela Washington fellowship applications are currently open for 2020. In 2019 the fellowship provided 700 outstanding young leaders from Sub-Saharan Africa with the opportunity to hone their skills at the United States College or university with support for professional development after they returned home.
The fellowship began in 2014 and is a flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) that empowers young people through academic course work, leadership training and networking. The ambassadors held a talk at the Sol Plaatje University to inform the students about the benefits of becoming a part of the fellowship.
The fellowship encourages young people in the Northern Cape to take part in the program as last year, they received only 6 applications from the Northern Cape, making it the lowest in South Africa.
Nelson Mandela Washington fellowship alumni, Mpho got a chance to go to the U.S last year and learned a lot throughout the 6 weeks that he was there.
“The experience was great, I learnt a lot while in the U.S. I would like to encourage every young person to give the program a chance and apply”.
After returning to South Africa, she started a mentoring organisation in Pampierstad, where she mentors children from grade 7 to 9.
The fellows, who are between the ages of 25 and 35 and have an established record of accomplishment in promoting innovation and positive impact in their organizations, institutions, communities, and countries are encouraged to apply.
Other requirements for applications are as follows:
- Are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the United States;
- Are eligible to receive a United States J-1 visa and are not employees or immediate family members of employees of the U.S. Government (including a U.S. embassy or consulate, USAID, and other U.S. Government entities). Should be proficient in reading, writing, and speaking English.
The fellowship is looking for young people who are leaders in their own fields and have the ability to reach beyond their home towns.
The applications close on the 9th of October.