Yali fellowship 2016 applications open

2015-10-28 06:00
PHOTO: nicole john  Young African Leaders alumnis Hlanganani Gumbi (left) and Candice Potgieter, Yali alumni.

PHOTO: nicole john Young African Leaders alumnis Hlanganani Gumbi (left) and Candice Potgieter, Yali alumni.

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APPLICATIONS are now open for the 2016 Mandela Washington Fellowship­ for Young African Leaders (Yali) and will close on 11 November­.

Next year’s batch of leaders will be doubled to include 1 000 people from sub-Saharan Africa, about 60 leaders from South Africa alone.

Hlanganani Gumbi from Pietermaritzburg recently returned from this year’s fellowship where he was based in Washington DC under the public services division.

Gumbi said that the opportunity that Yali provides to expand the scope of his career was endless.

“The networking that we did and the interesting people we met not only aided us in our careers, it provided us with a platform and opportunities to expand our scope and get help from others who have a different perspective.”

The fellowship is open to applicants between the ages of 25 and 35, who are already established in their careers, hold leadership roles in their communities and who have the intention to give back to the community when they return from the fellowship.

Mark Carr, public relations officer for the U.S. Embassy, said that Yali is in its third year and was developed to form bonds between the U.S. and South Africa, thus allowing people of like minds to learn from each other and to offer South African people the chance to study at some of America’s top universities.

Candice Potgieter, an alumni of Yali­, who was in the first group of Yali leaders, said the fellowship is a continued­ experience with support offered­ by the U.S. Consulate after the programme.

Potgieter and Gumbi are involved in working with their communities.

The fellowship application includes basic information about yourself, professional and academic experience and background and details about community involvement.

“Although the application does take time to complete, it makes you think about yourself, what you have achieved and where you are in your career thus far.

“You have to be comfortable talking about yourself and getting other people’s opinions about you would also help,” said Potgieter.

The fellowship includes academic course work, leadership training and the highlight of meeting President Barak­ Obama.

Applications and criteria for selection are available online at youngafricanleaders.state.gov

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