Video: Fellow Final Thoughts, Lamba Ka

Author: Luis Ruuska

Lamba Ka, a participant in the 2017 Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders at the University of Notre Dame, is a communications expert from Senegal who specializes in public relations, journalism, marketing, and civic responsibility. In this video, she discusses what impacted her the most throughout the fellowship, such as the class taught by Christopher Stevens, an assistant teaching professor in Notre Dame's Mendoza College of Business, and how she learned to appreciate the personal and cultural diversity in this year's cohort. 

Ka has worked for several news and media outlets throughout her career. Currently, she is the public relations officer for the Forum of Young Leaders of Africa at Gaston Berger University. She also serves as the communication and marketing manager to the Global Youth Innovation Network (GYIN) and has worked with UNWomen to integrate the organization’s communication processes. Ka also is the creator of SENEGEL (Senegal’s Next Generation of Leaders), an open data platform that allows users to learn about Senegalese culture, as well as follow legislation, changes in the economy, diplomatic efforts, and keep government officials accountable through a rating system.

Since 2014, the Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development (NDIGD) has worked closely with the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and its implementing partner, IREX, to bring the Mandela Washington Fellowship, the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), to Notre Dame. The fellowship empowers young African leaders through academic coursework, leadership training and networking opportunities.

The program is highly competitive, and the U.S. Department of State received more than 64,000 applications for only 1,000 placements across the country for the 2017 fellowship. Notre Dame’s class of 2017 Mandela Washington Fellows, 11 men and 14 women, came to campus from 20 countries across sub-Saharan Africa.

In 2016, the fellowship staff received a Presidential Team Irish Award for "exemplifying the University of Notre Dame’s core values on behalf of [NDIGD] and the University."

The Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development — an integral part of the new Keough School of Global Affairs at the University of Notre Dame — promotes human development and dignity among people worldwide through applied innovations, impact evaluation, education and training that help build just and equitable societies.

Contact: Luis Ruuska, communications specialist, Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development,