Webster's campus in Accra, Ghana, organized a networking and barbeque event to host the 4th Cohort of participants in President Barrack Obama’s Young African Leadership Initiative (YALI) who are currently undergoing leadership training at the West Africa Regional Leadership Centre (RLC) in Accra.
This is the second time Webster Ghana hosted this event, following a YALI cohort visit last November.
Speaking at the event that brought the YALI Cohort 4 participants together from various African countries, Webster Ghana campus director Christa Sanders said the partnership between YALI and Webster Ghana was important because Webster Ghana shares YALI’s vision of investing in the next generation of African leaders and also believes in the leadership potential of the African youth. The mission of Webster University globally, of ensuring high quality learning experiences that transforms students for global citizenship and individual excellence, is also in line with YALI’s objective.
The Public Affairs Counsellor of the U.S. Embassy in Accra, Daniel Fennell, said the idea behind YALI was to create the opportunity for promising African youth to meet with the U.S. president to explore his leadership skills. In order for more people to benefit from this intuitive, the regional centers were created in 2015. These centers build on exiting institutional capacity in Africa to provide quality training, mentoring and networking support to exceptional young leaders. The selected individual are from diverse background and experiences.
At this year’s event, Webster graduate students and YALI cohorts participants shared their perspectives in a session on "The impact of culture on leadership and the factors for influencing effective leadership in Africa."
Kofi Asare Opoku, former associate professor at the Institute of African Studies at University of Ghana, gave the keynote address. He called on young Africans to go beyond the skies. “There are realms beyond the skies for young Africans to passionately aspire to and I have every confidence that the creative impulse that lies within each of you will find expression in whatever you choose to do for the benefit of your people,” he advised.
The YALI cohort were given a tour of the new campus, which concluded with a barbeque and networking session for Webster students, cohort participants, the faculty and staff of Webster and RLC.