WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Purdue University has been selected as a partner institute for the 2022 Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders.

Beginning in mid-June, Purdue’s International Programs for Agriculture (IPIA) will host 25 of Africa’s emerging business leaders for a six-week Leadership Institute, sponsored by the US Department of State. The Mandela Washington Fellowship, the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), empowers young African leaders through academic coursework, leadership training, mentorship, networking, professional opportunities, and local community engagement . Established in 2010, YALI helps participants drive economic growth and prosperity, strengthen democratic governance, and strengthen peace and security in Africa.

“Engaging with fellows and jointly exploring and overcoming challenges, particularly for African women, in grassroots innovation and entrepreneurship, has the potential to unlock new opportunities to build a more sustainable, more equitable future. and more resilient for participants in their home country,” says Christian Butzke, Professor of Food Science “It is with great pride and anticipation that Purdue can both contribute to and learn from these exchanges.

Since 2014, the U.S. Department of State has supported nearly 5,100 Mandela Washington Scholars from across sub-Saharan Africa to develop their leadership skills and foster relationships and collaboration with U.S. professionals. The cohort of scholars located at Purdue will be part of a group of 700 Mandela Washington Scholars housed at 27 educational institutions across the United States. Following their leadership institutes, fellows will participate in the Mandela Washington Fellowship Summit, where they will engage in networking discussions and panel discussions with each other and with American leaders from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. After the summit, up to 100 competitively selected fellows will participate in four weeks of professional development with U.S. nongovernmental organizations, private companies, and government agencies. Funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and implemented by IREX, the Leadership Institutes will offer programs that will challenge, motivate, and empower young African leaders to meet the challenges of the 21st century. .

“Washington Mandela Fellows are very energetic and eager to learn how to make their businesses more profitable,” said Gary Burniske, Purdue’s MWF Academic Director and Associate Director for Program Development at IPIA. “These young women and men are excited to explore collaborations with the Purdue community and its stakeholders where Africans and Americans can build cultural and economic ties for mutual benefit.”

Here are some highlights of the Purdue program:

  • Fellows will connect with local businesses and volunteers through collaborative projects and site visits.
  • Fellows will have the opportunity to give back to the local community through service opportunities provided by NICHES Land Trust, Food Finders, Habitat for Humanity, and TLCH Homeless Services.
  • You can meet the fellows at different events throughout the summer, such as Taste of Tippecanoe, Indiana Fiddlers Gathering, and Mosey Down Main Street.

“As with previous cohorts of fellows, we anticipate that many of the participants will be agricultural entrepreneurs. Our engagement therefore presents a chance to invest in and shape the future of global agriculture,” said Gerald Shively, Associate Dean and Director of the IPIA. “And while the most direct beneficiaries of this exceptional program are the scholars themselves, the connections they make while on campus – especially with academic and business leaders – provide a range of opportunities. for future public and private partnerships and collaborations.”

For more information about the Mandela Washington Fellowship Leadership Institute at Purdue and how you can get involved, please contact Gary Burniske, [email protected] or visit the Purdue MWF website at https://www.purdue.edu/mandela-fellowship/

Ready to volunteer with the program? Register today!

the Mandela Washington Fellowship is a program of US State Department with funding provided by the US government and administered by IREX. For more information on the Mandela Washington Fellowship, visit mandelawashingtonfellowship.org and join the conversation at #YALI2022.

Writer: Nyssa Lilovich, 765-494-7077 [email protected]

Source: Gary Burniske, [email protected]

Agricultural communications: 765-494-8415;

Maureen Manier, Head of Department, [email protected]

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