WASHINGTON, DC —
Sixty young Zimbabweans have been selected for the 2016 Mandela Washington Fellowship Program, a brain-child of United States president Barack Obama.
In a statement, the United States Embassy in Harare said there are 31 male and 29 female participants from Zimbabwe this year.
Zimbabwe has over the years provided at least 30 fellows per year but the number has since doubled following a nod from President Obama to increase the number of participants in all nations.
The Mandela Washington Fellowship is the flagship program of Mr. Obama’s signature Young African Leaders Initiative, launched in 2010 to deepen the United States' engagement with the youth of Africa. So far, over 100 young Zimbabweans have participated in the program.
Fellows receive academic and professional knowledge from American universities and institutions for about six weeks before going back home to implement ideas derived from their stay in the U.S.
FILE: Attendees cheer as U.S. President Barack Obama (not pictured) arrives onstage at the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) Mandela Washington Fellowship Presidential Summit in Washington, August 3, 2015.