Clark Atlanta University to Host 2022 Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders


ATLANTA, GA (June 2, 2022) – Clark Atlanta University is proud to announce its selection as an Institute Partner for the 2022 Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders. Beginning in mid-June, Clark Atlanta University will host 24 of Africa’s bright, emerging Business leaders for a six-week Leadership in Business Institute, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. 

The Mandela Washington Fellowship, the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), empowers young African leaders through academic coursework, leadership training, mentoring, networking, professional opportunities, and local community engagement.  YALI was created in 2010 and supports young Africans as they spur economic growth and prosperity, strengthen democratic governance, and enhance peace and security across Africa. Since 2014, the U.S. Department of State has supported nearly 5,100 Mandela Washington Fellows from across Sub-Saharan Africa to develop their leadership skills and foster connections and collaboration with U.S. professionals. The cohort of Fellows hosted by Clark Atlanta University will be part of a group of 700 Mandela Washington Fellows hosted at 27 educational institutions across the United States.

After their Leadership Institutes, Fellows will participate virtually in the Mandela Washington Fellowship Summit, where they will take part in networking and panel discussions with each other and with

U.S. leaders from the public, private, and non-profit sectors.  Following the Summit, up to 100 competitively selected Fellows will participate in four weeks of professional development with U.S. non-governmental organizations, private companies, and government agencies. 


Funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and implemented by IREX, Leadership Institutes will offer programs that will challenge, motivate, and empower young leaders from Africa to tackle the challenges of the 21st century.

Some highlights of the Clark Atlanta University program will include:

  • Fellows will connect with local partners such as IBM, UPS, City of Atlanta, and the

Allen Entrepreneurial Institute (AEI) through site visits, collaborative projects and one-on-one mentoring.

  • Fellows will give back to the community through service opportunities at The Atlanta Community Foodbank (ACFB) The Metro Urban Farm, MedShare International, and

The Peachtree Road Race, just to name a few.

  • A meet and greet with the Fellows at the Clark Atlanta University Welcome Reception or the Local Business Speed Networking event. Specific event details forthcoming.

For additional information about the Mandela Washington Fellowship Leadership Institute at

Clark Atlanta University, contact Dr. Mesfin Bezuneh at or 404.880.6374.

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.  For more information about the Mandela Washington Fellowship, visit and join the conversation at #YALI2022.                                                          

About Clark Atlanta University

Established in 1988 by the historic consolidation of Atlanta University (1865) and Clark College (1869).  Clark Atlanta University continues a 150-year legacy rooted in African American tradition and focused on the future.  Through global innovation, transformative educational experiences, and high-value engagement.  CAU cultivates lifted lives that transforms the world.  Notable alumni include: James Weldon Johnson; American civil rights activist, poet, and songwriter (Lift Every Voice and Sing "The Black National Anthem"; Ralph David Abernathy Sr., American civil rights activist; Congressman Hank Johnson, Georgia District 4; Kenya Barris, American award-winning television and movie producer; Kenny Leon, Tony Award-winning Broadway Director; Jacque Reid, Emmy Award-winning Television Personality and Journalist; Brandon Thompson, Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion for NASCAR; Valeisha Butterfield Jones, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer at the Recording Academy. To learn more about Clark Atlanta University, visit