Pietermaritzburg's Sandile Dlamini (30) will be representing the country in this year’s Mandela Washington Fellowship programme in the U.S.Dlamini, who will jet off to Miami, Florida, later this month, will enrol for a public management course at the Florida International University.The Hayfields resident was selected alongside three other fellows from KZN who will form part of the 700 fellows from around Africa who will be participating in the programme.A total 45 of the 700 participants are from South Africa. The Mandela Washington Fellowship is a legacy of the former U.S. president Barack Obama. Obama established the fellowship in an attempt to create well capacitated leaders across Africa able to make quality decisions. Dlamini said he applied online for the programme last September and was interviewed in January.“At the semi-final stage I was interviewed by an experienced selection panel at the United States Embassy and Consulate in Durban.“I was delighted to receive a letter from the U.S. Embassy saying that I had been successful and I was now one of the 45 leaders to represent the country in the U.S.,” he said.There are three topics from which fellows choose: Business and Entrepreneurship, Public Management and Civil Society.“I chose Public Management as it covers a diverse range of topics from environmental to social issues,” said Dlamini.Dlamini said this is not the first time he had landed an opportunity to represent South Africa.In 2008, Dlamini was selected for a course, Student in Free Enterprise, in Suntec City, Singapore, but could not attend because of lack of sponsorship.“I was selected again [for the same course] in 2009 to represent South Africa in Berlin, Germany,” said Dlamini.Dlamini is leaving for Miami on June 18 and will spend five weeks at the Florida International University. He will then go to Washington for a week to participate in strategic high-level panel discussions.Dlamini said he was happy as this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for him.“Being selected for this unique experience has given me confidence that the potential and triumphs of the young South Africans are being noticed across the world.“I am hoping to make a lasting impact and to come back a more rounded leader with advanced ideas in public management,” he said.