BOONE, N.C. — Several former participants of Appalachian State University’s Mandela Washington Fellowship Leadership Institutes have maintained relationships with local Appalachian staff and graduates, partnering on programs to create a positive impact in African communities.
The Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders is the flagship program of the U.S. Department of State’s Young African Leaders Initiative, bringing approximately 700 leaders age 25–35 each year to the United States from Africa for academic coursework and leadership training. Since 2016, Appalachian has hosted 100 Fellows in on-campus Leadership Institutes focused on civic engagement.
Appalachian was one of 27 U.S. educational institutions selected to host participants in 2019. For 2020, Appalachian is again among this select group of institutions and will host 25 leaders for its six-week Leadership Institute. Fellows experience the following:
- Training and workshops on topics such as grant writing, use of technology and social entrepreneurship.
- Volunteer sessions at local charities.
- A weekend homestay with local resident hosts.
- Networking and engagement with local community organizations, including nonprofits and local government.
- Visits to area attractions.
Relationships between the Fellows and local individuals have resulted in continuing collaborations, some involving travel to Sub-Saharan Africa.
Appalachian's ongoing Mandela partnerships
The Mandela Washington Fellowship is a program of the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. government and administered by IREX. Appalachian is a sub-grantee of IREX and, through its Office of International Education and Development and Appalachian and the Community Together (ACT), has implemented U.S.-based Leadership Institutes as a part of the Fellowship since 2016. For more information about the Mandela Washington Fellowship, visit the Fellowship’s website at www.mandelawashingtonfellowship.org.
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About the Office of International Education and Development
The OIED is responsible for spearheading the internationalization efforts at Appalachian. The internationalization mission of Appalachian is to develop awareness, knowledge, appreciation and respect of cultural differences in both domestic and international contexts in its students, faculty, staff and the surrounding communities. The university is also dedicated to creating a campus environment that builds the theoretical and practical skills needed to interact effectively in a global society. Learn more at https://international.appstate.edu.
About Appalachian and the Community Together (ACT)
Appalachian and the Community Together (ACT) provides service experiences as opportunities to connect and engage with others to build authentic relationships, stimulate critical thinking and skill building, and recognize individual impact and responsibility to the local and global community. Between the 2004–05 and 2018–19 academic years, nearly $25.5 million of value has been contributed to the community via Appalachian State University’s Appalachian and the Community Together (ACT) program (over 1.91 million hours of service plus $781,419 in funds raised) using the $25.43 per hour national standard for volunteer time. ACT partners with over 160 local nonprofits. Initiatives include blood drives, hunger and homeless awareness events, fundraising for local charities and alternative service experiences. Learn more at https://act.appstate.edu.
About Appalachian State University
As the premier public undergraduate institution in the state of North Carolina, Appalachian State University prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The Appalachian Experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and to embrace diversity and difference. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian is one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System. Appalachian enrolls more than 19,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.