Best Graduating Student Receives Harvard Scholarship

Written by Akeem Alao

In a bid to encourage excellent academic performance, Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, motivated KIF best graduating fellow with a substantial award. The beneficiary of the award, Jemimah Jatau, a fellow of the Kashim Ibrahim Fellows (KIF), was awarded a one-year leadership programme of the state government.

While announcing the award on Sunday, 7th July 2019, at the graduation ceremony in Kaduna, the governor explained that Jatau would be sponsored for a Master’s degree at Harvard or the Lee Kwan Yew School of Public Policy, while the second and third best would be appointed as his special assistants.

“The Fellows have justified the hopes invested in them,” the governor said.

The second and third best were identified as Mohammed Usman and Leonel Echa.

The governor stressed that the chairman of the Governing Board, Keem Belo-Osagie, would equally pursue scholarship opportunities in the Knight Hennessy Fellowship at Stanford University for interested members of the graduating set.

He explained that the KIF programme introduced in 2018 by the Kaduna State government was aimed at developing and nurturing leadership ability across Nigeria.

“The overall mission is to raise the next generation of leaders who will most likely be absorbed into the Nigerian public sector having had a first-hand experience of its workings and challenges,” he explained.

“We have exposed the fellows to a rich and varied programme of immersion in the daily work of government agencies, lectures and seminars on leadership, working trips and speaker series.”

“We have made considerable investments in these fellows as a deliberate intervention in building leadership capacity and promoting a meritocratic culture.”

“As they graduate today, they have been empowered to assume responsibilities of leadership, and contribute to helping our country to master the challenges of an increasingly complex and more competitive world,” he said.

The governor explained that the programme was named after Sir Kashim Ibrahim, a former Governor of Northern Region to immortalise his leadership role in building the region when the colonial shackles were dropped.

“I am especially proud and impressed by the energy, zeal, talent and ability of the pioneer set of Kashim Ibrahim Fellows, who have set a remarkable standard for future participants in the programme.

The graduating fellows have described the initiative as ‘life changing’, adding that the programme had completely changed their orientation and perspective about effective leadership and public service.

Jemimah Jatau, from Jaba Local Government Area of Kaduna State, expressed her gratitude to the state government for the opportunity granted her to participate in the programme.

She described the scholarship award as a testimony of the government’s confidence on the youth.

Another participant, Michael Medubi, a 35-year old Civil Engineer from Kogi State, said that the programme was a ‘priceless and golden opportunity to learn and create new network.’

About the author

Akeem Alao

Akeem Alao trained as a language teacher. He graduated from Adeniran Ogunsanya college of Education where he studied English/Yoruba Languages and Ekiti State University where he obtained a degree in English Education.

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