Making Valuable Connections: Fletcher's Nani Detti's Summer Networking Experience

by VManve
Aug 15

Over the past couple of weeks, I had the opportunity to meet a few individuals who work with university students, and other young people in Ethiopia. Last week, I had an opportunity to meet with Dr. Kassu Jilcha, who heads the career center at Addis Ababa University. My meeting with Dr. Kassu was focused on learning more about what he and his team were doing to strengthen the career center at AAU, and other 11 universities across the country. He explained that these centers are fairly new and are currently in the process of developing various manuals and guidelines that can be distributed to students as part of their professional development journey. He added that the centers are looking for partners who can provide them with substantial resources, as well as training for their staff. I had an opportunity to share about my organization Misale’s work with Dr. Kassu, and he expressed interest in signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with us, as well as other institutions abroad who can support the center’s work. I plan on having a following up meeting with his team to identify avenues for collaboration.

I also had a chance to connect with the team at the Mastercard Foundation office here in Addis to explore ways that they can support Misale’s work. We had a discussion about the work that the foundation does through its Young Africa Works Initiative, and the team has kindly agreed to help me connect with its partners who are doing similar work to ours.

This week, I had a chance to visit Creative Hub Ethiopia. It supports creative innovators, designers and SMEs in various fields by deepening understanding of global design and industrial concepts, providing state-of-the-art working tools and resources, and enhancing the link between young innovators, industrial and governmental entities. The center has been the go-to place for young people who want to meet and work together on various projects together. I had an opportunity to meet Kifle W., who oversees various programming at the Hub, and is currently in the process of launching a mentorship program. We discussed the value of mentorship for young people and expressed interest in engaging further to identify avenues for collaboration. I enjoyed my visit to the Creative Hub, and I was inspired to see young people gathering together to work with one another and find innovative ways to solve our country’s problems.

I look forward to seeing where my engagements lead, and I am hopeful that my discussions so far will help Misale gain valuable partners.