Over the past two years I have had the privilege of working on the pilot evaluation of the Higher Education Readiness Program (HER), an IIE initiative that provides secondary school pathways to underprivileged girls in Ethiopia. HER girls continuously inspired me with their hard work and determination to achieve their dreams. Here are some examples:
At the end of this month 100 HER girls in Ethiopia from Addis Ketema and Fittawarari will graduate from high school. We are proud of their accomplishments and excited about their futures! IIE is now raising funds to assist with their transition to university, and we invite you to lend your support by making a donation by June 15.
Every year in March, IIE celebrates International Women's Day by sharing about the bright young participants of IIE's Center for Women's Leadership Initiatives.
IIE is excited to announce that an additional 100 girls were awarded IIE's Higher Education Readiness (HER) scholarship. These 11th grade girls (fifty each from Fitawrari and Addis Ketema schools) should be proud of their accomplishments. They were selected by an independent review panel consisting of Ethiopian leaders in the non-profit and private sectors. The panelists chose the next round of HER girls based on academic successes, financial need, and potential for leadership. After a thorough review of all the submitted applications, the review panel submitted the final list for IIE review and notification to the selected girls and schools.
The HER girls, participants of IIE’s Higher Education Readiness (HER) program, have been busy over the past few months with tutoring, meeting with their mentors, and the important year-end exams. This summer they are attending entrepreneurship and English language training workshops.
This past September, 100 underserved girls in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia—50 from Addis Ketema School and 50 from Fitawrari Abayneh School—were awarded the Higher Education Readiness (HER) Scholarship. The scholarship provides the girls with financial support combined with innovative leadership and life skills training to help them complete their secondary education and equip them with the tools needed to continue on to university.
The IIE Addis Ababa office held an award ceremony at Fitawrari and Addis Ketema schools to celebrate the final selection of the Higher Education Readiness (HER) recipients. The 100 girls had successfully completed this past spring’s tutoring sessions, attended and did well in the summer enrichment activities including English language training and leadership and life skills development, and scored well enough on the Ethiopian National Exam to proceed directly to the 11th grade academic track. Congratulations to all of the HER recipients! We are very proud of you and look forward to working with you over the coming two years.
Recently, I attended a dinner where the keynote speaker gave a speech on youth leadership. This topic is of great interest to me because a significant portion of IIE’s work in sub-Saharan Africa focuses on leadership development, particularly for women and youth. The speaker talked about the importance of making space for young people. Afterward, my dinner companion remarked, “There is so much talk about leadership these days, but I’d really like to know what people are actually doing to make space for young people.” His comments resonated with me.