A new MBA scholarship designed to empower high-potential African women to engage in the economic development of the continent has been launched.
The Oxford – Adara Foundation Scholarship programme was announced by Dean Peter Tufano at the School’s annual Oxford Business Forum Africa, which coincided with International Women’s Day. From 2019, the Adara Foundation, in partnership with Oxford University, will fund a full scholarship for an exceptional female MBA candidate from Africa for three years. The Foundation shares Saïd Business School’s commitment to fostering greater gender parity in education and increasing levels of investment in talented individuals from across Africa.
‘Throughout Africa, women’s lower education levels limit their ability to contribute more meaningfully to socio-economic development on the continent. Initiatives like this are important as education is one of the most crucial areas of empowerment for women,’ said Yvonne Ike, founder of the Adara Foundation, a non-profit social enterprise in Nigeria, which focuses on empowering women and advancing education in Africa.
The scholarship, open to female candidates of an African nationality, covers the full MBA programme fee and living expenses. Candidates must demonstrate a commitment to return to their home country upon completion of the one-year MBA programme to contribute to Africa’s business and socio-economic development. The scholarships will be available for the 2019-20 academic year and no separate application will be needed as all students meeting the criteria will automatically be considered.
According to the African Development Bank, eliminating gender inequality and empowering women could raise the productive potential of one billion Africans, delivering a huge boost to the continent’s development potential.
‘Women will play an increasingly critical role in harnessing the challenges, driving the development of the global economy and importantly, the development of Africa – they need to be better supported to do so,’ said Yvonne Ike. ‘My hope is that the Oxford – Adara Foundation Scholarships will inspire others to consider taking similar action to support African women who have a vital role to play in the global economy, and particularly within Africa.’