Source: AFK Insider | by Veronica Pamoukaghlian | 7 August 2014
U.S. President Barack Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative brought 500 African business leaders under the age of 35 to top U.S. universities to network and develop business and leadership skills.
Ghanaian-born Ethel Cofie was one of them. Selected from a pool of 50,000 applicants, Cofie and her colleagues got to meet Obama and many key industry players in the U.S.
Leading up to the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit in Washington, D.C., the young leaders were asked to develop a set of recommendations, which were presented at the summit. Companies participating in the program, including IBM, have expressed an interest in the young leaders’ abilities to use their experience in the U.S. for change in Africa.
With an emphasis on leadership, creativity, and social technoly, the YALI program shows potential to have a long-lasting effect. A natural born leader, Cofie exudes confidence and is not afraid of working hard to realize her dreams. As a young girl, she said she grew up with the notion that women were somewhat “lesser beings” because they couldn’t carry on the family name.
AFKInsider spoke to Cofie about her experiences with YALI and her vision of the future of Africa.