LIVE Blogging at The Africa Innovation Summit at Wesleyan, Jasmine Mack ‘ 16

Currently everyone is taking their seats.

Introductory Remarks: Olayinka Lawal’15 currently introducing the key note speaker and beginning the summit.

Keynote Speaker: No one is useless in this word without burdening another.-to feel useful for someone. (Hirut M’Cleod quoting someone about Thanksgiving)

Hirut M’cleod’00 is talking of her experience with a homeless person and being humble. “Wesleyan gave her a chance to make a stand”, “To know what you stand for”, and how the “what” evolves. She spoke on core values and how they change the what, but she said the “what” doesn’t change. She believes everyone deserves to know their destiny and to be the master of their fate. She is describing the idea and definition of Disruptive innovation. She believes we should dialogue about what our work means for someone and have these hard conversations and define the purposes. She is speaking on how to define purpose: To have an understanding, to always sweat the details, Implementations matter, and People want to be respected with dignity.

She is talking about her home Sierra Leone. She is saying a quote, “Devils larger than life mythical things that you avoid”, and how the Ebola workers look like devils. As in the workers should come in and treat the people with dignity and treat them like people that are human.

She is saying, “Take disruptive implications to the people.” This means to take disruptive innovations to the people.

Her professional values come from her opinions and experiences. She Quotes George Bernard: “Are you willing to unfold your own personal myth?”

ALA:  She is an alum currently giving her goals, description of ALA, and experience after Wesleyan via a video.

-Kaitlyn Patillo’12

Panel # 1 Children & Youth: First Moderator Professor Alice Hadler (Associate Dean for International Student Affairs)-teaching at Wesleyan for 20 years. 2007 first taught Write About Places: Africa.

Steve Kallaugher’73 Young Heroes-created after he left the peace core.-Where did this mamba come from”-name in Swaziland. In 2004 there were no organizations or systems to help battle the aids disease. There was only the peace core left. Saw many orphans left behind because of Aids. The orphans became his focus. 40% of children left behind under the age of 18. He stepped in with grants, stipends for food, clothing, tuition, a healthcare program through Baylor Medical School. They support students until they are 19 and then they become eligible for loans once they enter the Step program. In a way they are a relief program. It has been going on for 9 years.

John Manners Ken SAP-He started out as a journalist and later started this program is an athlete program for Kenyan Student Athletes Program-founded in 2004. He and a colleague wanted to extend opportunity to an area where privileged opportunities didn’t exist.  They wanted to get ordinary students from rural areas get into top schools. They weren’t trying to seek athletic scholarships like state schools. They went around to head masters to see who had the potential from rural backgrounds, students who did not come from privilege, and had done well on the KCSE (national high school exam). 6 kids made the programed, 5 got into schools, 3 to Harvard, 1 Wellesley, and other top schools. That is when they realized this was bigger than that. Next year there was a first student to go and graduated from Wesleyan in 2010 and is getting a PhD at Yale currently. 8 years later he realizes now that they are doing disruptive innovation that will allow these students to create a group of leaders. He believes that a liberal education is important for these students to get this experience. He wants them to get moral training and believes that these kids will constitute a different caliber of leadership.

Marina King’16 Shinning Hope for Communities- based in Kenya where the largest slums are, fundraise, and raises awareness for the Indio’s gender and culture.

SHFCO-is about being a part of the community instead of taking over as a foreigner over the education system. A health center, library, computer center were built in Cubera, Kenya, one of the largest slums in Kenya. This group helps girls go to school. At Wesleyan they do fundraisers, panels, and events to help this community of girls.

Questions: What is the difference between genders in the Ken SAP program by Orelia Jonathan?

John Manners Ken SAP:  60-40 male female. Most have male, 2 female at Williams & Smith. Minimum-mean grade of A plain 1% of half of test takers are eligible. Most students in program have graduated college. Selection is based on detailed application similar to Common application, family finance background, also try to gage and see how students represent themselves and want outgoing kids for survival (and bang for its buck). Everyone has to run 1500 meters. 3/4 does badly and the running is the last part on the exam. Over course of the program students become better athletes. Some coaches are hand holders and some are not. Some students are distinguished athletes and told of some examples. John Manners Ken SAP

Q: How is the program impacting the community’s educational systems to be eligible of your program?

John Manners Ken SAP:  It is not impacting on how they approach high school programs. The schools primarily center on the end of the year high school exam. Have to be persuaded that the program isn’t a scam, that these colleges are great, and to get parents to cooperate. John Manners Ken SAP

Q: Where do you get your funding and what are you challenges?

John Manners Ken SAP: For Ken SAP they get donors. We do need more money, students need financial support.

Steve Kallaugher’73: I’ve Been called an orphan for asking for money and to ask for help for the operating cost. Runs an adventure trip to Swaziland, fun camps, corporate foundations, just in the month I’ve done 14 grant proposals.  Steve Kallaugher’73

Q: To what extent have you started using your business endowment to sustain you in years? How do you sustain education in the long run? What is your relationship to the state?

Marina King’16: I’m just a student relay person for SHFCO. They have been able to open schools, have gotten more funding, but have not started an endowment. It’s really amazing to hear the girls’ stories and experiences about their future career aspirations. Marina King’16

John Manners Ken SAP: A donor who meets 80% of our funding and we would like to have an endowment. We have alumni and some have been able to contribute to ad hoc endowment. It will be 10 years until students who become alumni will be able to give back to the program. I have been discussing with the board to sustain this program.

Q: USAP He is very concerned with the economic backgrounds and does your program mostly consider the economic background?

John Manners Ken SAP: USAP does have a ceiling for economic backgrounds and it is highly successful. We do best to get kids with a low economic background, but there is not a cut off. We have started to come with a holistic approach. We have taken kids from high educational back grounds, but we lean highly in favor of needy families.  John Manners Ken SAP

Panel #2 Business & Development:

Jim Brenner’79 Broad Cove Partners-huge need for money in Ghana and led to raise money in the US from institutional investors and help mortgage bank in Ghana. President of Liberia in 2007 called him and they started a constructional mortgaging program to help build houses for people moving back into the diaspora. Africa has a very risky capital, but need small amounts of money to start these programs off.

Mikako Tai’11 Africa America Institute-Entrepreneurship, partnerships with local institutions  to help, bring together leaders from all sectors through conferences to talk about these issues, and have summits who care about development in the continent. President Obama power Africa, talk about conversations on Africa, and have been around for 60 years. Focusing on the continent to develop the continent for the employment, they have a transformational employment program for leaders of smaller organizations to get financial help to take them further.

Oladoyin Oladapo ‘14 JóòMah-cofounded JóòMah.  JóòMah is a job application for sub-Saharan Africa. It serves to match the best applicant with the job looking for the skills that best meet that job. They launched in Ghana about a month ago, looking forward to going to Nigeria soon, and the rest of sub-Saharan Africa. For JóòMah the large problems is not having access to jobs

Moderated by Anthony Keats-Professor of Economics

Questions & Answers

Q: What is your primary focus?

Mikako Tai’11: Focusing on skills and partnerships. They are focusing on education and partnerships with African Government.

Jim Brenner’79: America is completely set-up to do business with people you’ve never met with the assumption to trust everyone. In Ghana there are problems of not trusting and not knowing people. They weren’t from their village and not from their church. Until 2009 people weren’t reporting loan borrowers. There is a lot of catching up to do as far as business. On a political note, until the Africa Union works together their will be a problem of catching up.

Q: To what extent have you thought about to make these matches work better?-addressed to JóòMah

Oladoyin Oladapo ’14: Whatever the employer is looking for, the process will be cheaper, faster, and access to more talents. There will be an issue of nepotism, but the trust factor will grow.

Q: Who mostly uses the platform?

Oladoyin Oladapo ’14: Most employers are using platform to send out to job seeker they want to apply to their jobs.

A summary of what Jim Brenner’79 said was using technology to have a low cost efficient way in registering land and dealing with the majority and politics in power.

Q: What are you examples in building in Universities and programs?

Mikako Tai’11: Pan Atlantic University in Lagos and two others. We are the entity that looks for funding, Leadership, and management. Holistically we are trying to create a higher capacity for these institutions.

Q: Could you talk about your role in networking and how do you see it building other ventures on the continent?

Oladoyin Oladapo ’14: Networking is starting at a base. Also take a break from networking to have a product to network with. Starting with the base of getting involved and making those relationships. Half of the members of JóòMah are from Wesleyan. Leverage from those connections and let those relationships grow.

Q: What do you recommend for students who just graduated to find jobs on the continent?

Mikako Tai’11: We look for more people who have the most tangible and skills technical training. We provide hands on and technical skills training. We aren’t just focusing on PhD and degree applicants.

Panel 3 Healthcare:

Tiffany Aquino Unite for Sight-worked for partners in health for Rwanda -grateful and impressed to be surrounded by such individuals on the panel. She started with a strong commitment to social justice and now going on a venture for mental health. Had a concern for disconnect of foreign individuals versus people who have connections with locals. She wrote a thesis of appropriateness. She also is a part of the Global Health and Innovation Conferences held at Yale University.

Shadrack Frimpong, Healthy Africa-He is a student from Penn State; he’s a part of the Botswana Union ship program, and majoring in Biology and Global health. He told of his experiences and his hometown in Ghana about Healthcare centers. He wants to become a HIV researcher.

Chelsea Tweneboah’15-She interned at Cape Coast Regional Hospital, the legal and medical center for New York, The Dominican Republic, and Mexico.  She is Chemistry major and started with Health because of her mother being a nurse in the emergency room. She is very interested in international health, community service, and helping others. She did research to find internships on global platform and found an internship in Ghana because it was safe due to her parents being from Ghana. She learned to understand government, organizations, and communities. She told of her situations of being in uncomfortable experiences to become a stronger person.

Moderated by Laura Ann Twagira, Professor of History

Left at 5:20