May 4, 2017

Entrepreneurship: U.I gets Mandela Washington Fellowship


By Dayo Adesulu

IN its quest to promote employability and entrepreneurial skills among undergraduates, Mandela Washington Fellowship Reciprocal Exchange has reiterated commitment to sponsor students of the University of Ibadan.

In a release, it stated that Ayomide Shittu, a Texas-based American attorney of Nigerian descent will be joining the 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow, Emeka Ossai, a Project Lead at Inceptum Services, an organisation that aims to raise one million student entrepreneurs across Nigerian universities by 2020.

It states: “The goal is to bridge the gaps between what the students are taught at the university and the skills needed for the real world, whether in corporate Nigeria or in their various entrepreneurial pursuits.”

The duo, it was noted, met in 2016 when Emeka Ossai was a Mandela Washington Fellow at the University of Texas at Austin, adding that “they both realised a mutual desire to continue working to reduce youth unemployment and underemployment in Nigeria, especially in finding ways to involve the diaspora in their efforts.’”

According to Shittu, the U.S. Department of State partnered IREX, a non-profit organisation that focuses on international education and research to help continue collaboration between Mandela Washington Fellows and American professionals. He maintained that the program was  one of many of such, taking U.S citizens to several countries in sub-Saharan Africa in April and May 2017.

His words: “Project E1T1 will take its participants – 50 University of Ibadan students, through several topics including applying design-thinking to goal-setting, business communication, networking and building social capital, interview skills. The programme will be led by American exchange fellow – Ayo Shittu and Mandela Washington Fellow 2016,  Emeka Ossai, including several subject-matter experts on business plan formulation, applying and accessing opportunities for internships, fellowships, and other experiential opportunities.”