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Obama Foundation Scholars Program at Columbia University 2020-2021

Applications are open for the Obama Foundation Scholars Program 2020-2021 at Columbia University. The Program brings together rising leaders from around the world who have demonstrated a commitment to finding solutions to challenges in their communities, countries and regions.

Over the course of an academic year, the Obama Foundation Scholars will have the opportunity to deepen their knowledge and skills and to build new capacities and networks that will accelerate their impact in their home countries.

Program Details

Scholars participate in an immersive program that brings together academic, skills-based and experiential learning, designed by Columbia University in consultation with the Obama Foundation. A cornerstone of the program includes a required course, which will run for the length of the academic year. Scholars will also have an opportunity to select and enroll in additional courses offered by Columbia University that are relevant to their specific field or values-based leadership, or that fill in gaps in their previous studies.

Scholars will also participate in workshops to develop practical skills to enhance the impact of their work. Previous workshop topics include conflict management and resolution, public speaking, data analysis and interpretation, and resilience. The program also takes advantage of the unique opportunities that come with being at one of the world’s most important centers of research and with being in the City of New York. Throughout the year, Scholars will have opportunities to engage with thought leaders and practitioners from public, private, and nonprofit sectors.

In addition, Scholars participate in one-of-a-kind experiences led by the Obama Foundation, including robust networking, mentorship, service activities and values-based leadership development, offering them a chance to learn from some of the world’s most innovative leaders and to build connections with the Obama Foundation and with Obama Foundation Scholars at the University of Chicago.

Table of Content

About Obama Foundation

The Obama Foundation Leaders: Africa program will inspire, empower, and connect emerging leaders from across the African continent through a core set of shared values and leadership skills. Together, they will form a network of innovative and ethical changemakers and positive role models who will be well-prepared to create tangible solutions to the biggest challenges in their communities, countries, and continent. From government, to civil society, to the private sector and beyond, we’re looking for changemakers who have demonstrated a commitment to advancing the common good within their ... read more


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Obama Foundation Entrepreneur


Aim and Benefits of Obama Foundation Entrepreneur

  1. Monthly stipend to assist with living expenses in New York City
  2. A furnished studio apartment within walking distance of Columbia University
  3. All tuition and fees for up to four courses at Columbia University
  4. Basic medical, dental and life insurance for the duration of the program
  5. Air travel to and from home country and any program-related activities
  6. Leadership development programming led by the Obama Foundation that will help scholars gain the real-world skills, tools and experiences to expand the impact of their work when they return home

Requirements for Obama Foundation Entrepreneur Qualification

The Obama Foundation Scholars Program at Columbia University seeks rising leaders from around the world who meet the following criteria:

  1. Have a proven commitment to service and leadership within a community, region or country outside the United States, coupled with a demonstrated commitment to return to these communities following their completion of the program and apply their enhanced training, skills and connections on a long-term basis for the benefit of these communities
  2. Are emerging leaders who have made meaningful contributions to their field and are now at a “tipping point” in their careers
  3. Are fluent in English (verbal, written and spoken)
  4. Have the ability and inclination to positively shape the future of their community
  5. Have a demonstrated commitment to humility, integrity, inclusivity, stewardship, fearlessness, imagination and teamwork

Checkout: 20 How To Study Abroad Frequently Asked Questions

Documents Required for Application

  1. Online application form
  2. Resume/curriculum vitae
  3. Personal video statement
  4. Responses to short essay questions
  5. Proof of English proficiency
  6. Three letters of recommendation


Application Deadline

December 13, 2019


How to Apply

Interested and qualified? Go to Obama Foundation on cwp.embark.com to apply

For more details, please visit the scholarship website here


Read Also: Top 20 Reasons To Study Abroad
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