Mandela Washington Fellowship



Wagner College is proud to serve as a host institution for the fifth cohort of Mandela Washington Fellowship, the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative. The Mandela Washington Fellowship aims to empower young leaders from Sub-Saharan through academic coursework, leadership training, and networking opportunities. The Fellowship, which began in 2014, has already engaged 3,000 young leaders from every country in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Through this initiative, young African leaders are gaining the skills and connections they need to accelerate their own career trajectories and contribute more robustly to strengthening democratic institutions, spurring economic growth, and enhancing peace and security in Africa.  The Mandela Washington Fellowship is a program of the United States Government.  The U.S. components are administered by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs and supported by IREX, a U.S. non-governmental agency.

From June 20, 2018, through July 29, 2018, Wagner is hosting 25 competitively selected young Africans Leaders who will participate in a six-week academic institute on Civic Leadership, part of the larger group of 700 Mandela Washington Fellows being hosted at 28 colleges and universities across the United States this summer. This 6-week Institute has been designed to mirror Wagner’s Port Richmond Partnership, where Fellows will focus each week on a different pillar that is important to civic life in many communities. After an introduction to Theories of Civic Leadership, Fellows will engage in classroom sessions, site visits, and community service activities focused on Economic Development, Healthcare, Arts, and Education. During Week 6 of the Institute, Fellows will put their learning into practice, developing grant proposals for their own not-for-profit interests and beginning to develop the means to achieve their goals.   For more information about Wagner College’s Mandela Washington Fellowship program, contact:

  • Dr. Ruta Shah-Gordon, Vice President for Internationalization, Intercultural Affairs and Campus Life, 718-420-4254
  • Ms. Maggie Cross, Director of Co-Curricular Programs,, 718-390-3277
  • Mr. Sidiq Soulemana, Assistant Director, Center for  Intercultural Advancement, 718-420-4594


Meet The 2018 Mandela Washington Fellows

Ashraf Booley, South African

Ayaba Gloria Gangnonto, Benin
Wendata Bertille Dorcas Yanogo, Burkina Faso
Barbara Kemigisa, Uganda

Darmin Domingos Mutenda Ribeiro, Mozambique
Dorice Habwe Andetse, Kenya
Duaa Albadri, Sudan

Eric Constantin Makanda, Central African Republic
Gerrit Keyter, Namibia

Gloria Mutyaba, Uganda

Jerrat Bongeh Ngongfeutang, Cameroon
Hella Dawit Dessie, Ethiopia

John Chiti, Zambia

Kellya Uwiragiye, Rwanda

Kouassi Y N'Goran, Cote d'Ivoire
Lucia Maria Brazao de Barros Cardoso, Cabo Verde
Nick Oketch, Kenya

Nkateko P. Masinga, South Africa
Nouhoum Akondo, Togo

Omotoke Titilope Olowo, Nigeria
Phantsi E. Makobane, Lesotho
Rudo I. Chakanyuka, Zimbabwe
Shepherd Nyambayo, Zimbabwe
Anoziva Ishe Marindire, Zimbabwe
Grace Danladi Saleh, Nigeria

The Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders is the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) and is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the U.S. Department of State and administered by IREX. For more information, please visit


This is a small message of friendship, love and integration from the Mandela Washington fellows 2017 of Mali. Watch MWF YALI MALI 2017 Message (UPDATED)
Video thumbnail 2 MWF YALI MALI 2017 Message (UPDATED)

CLICK HERE to read bios of Wagner College’s 2018 Mandela Washington Fellows

CLICK HERE to read bios of Wagner College’s 2017 Mandela Washington Fellows 

CLICK HERE to read bios of Wagner College’s 2016 Mandela Washington Fellows.

CLICK HERE to read bios of Wagner College’s 2015 Mandela Washington Fellows.

CLICK HERE to read bios of Wagner College’s 2014 Mandela Washington Fellows.