Baobab Monthly Newsletter 
Welcome to the monthly Baobab newsletter where you learn the latest news related to the Scholars Community platform. We are excited to continue to share the latest developments. 

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What's Included
  • Get Inspired by our Mentors
  • Meet the Summer Interns
  • Alpha Launch
  • Share your Thoughts
  • What We are Reading
Get Inspired by Our Mentors
Find inspiration when you need it, get answers directly from the experts, and develop your professional network with our mentors. On the platform, you'll have the chance to participate in Ask Me Anything sessions with our mentors. During these sessions, you'll have the opportunity to ask questions to our mentors that they will answer in real-time. Think of it as a press conference, but online. This will give you the ability to connect with an expert and learn about their field in a fun and exciting way! We are continuing to grow the number of mentors active on the platform as well as the number of career fields they represent. In fact, we already have a diverse set mentors including those who are entrepreneurs, information technology specialists, philosophers and educators.

Here's a sneak peak of two of the mentors we've recruited to be part of the platform. We hope that you are as inspired and excited as we are about them!
Jelani Aliyu, MFR
Baobab Mentor
Senior Lead Designer, General Motors

“We must never underestimate the significance of human imagination, the ability to envision a dramatically positive and dynamic future...To imagine is to dream, to dream is to tune in to the ever amazing possibilities of the future... There are no impossibilities, there is only a better Africa to build”
Noela Akayezu 
Baobab Mentor
Enterprise Program Support Officer, Digital Opportunity Trust Rwanda

“From early age I was always fascinated by science...With my love for mathematics and physics I enrolled in Mechanical Engineering field...Choosing a field that matches your interest is key if you want to keep your enthusiasm till graduation.”
Meet The MasterCard Foundation Scholar Summer Interns
Join us in welcoming our 5 new interns who joined us June 6th in Tempe, Arizona. We are excited to host and collaborate with a talented team of Scholars attending different partner institution. If you know any of the interns, be sure to connect with them about their experience.

During the summer, Scholars will assist with marketing and communications efforts for the launch of Baobab in October. In addition, Scholars will learn about iterative research and design for online platforms, create content for Scholars and provide feedback on how to improve Baobab functionality and design. 

Peter Kironji, University of Toronto 
Major: Computer and Electrical Engineering
"I believe the platform will be a tool that will help us in the learning process and connect us in a way that we can all learn from each other and inspire others through our interactions. I look forward to hearing what you are all interested in and you great ideas."

Sandra Nabulega, Makarere University
Major: Statistics
"I strongly believe there is no difference between Arizona and Uganda except for too much sunshine and maybe the level of organisation. I am ready to explore the differences"

Bridget Acheampong, Ashesi University 
Major: Business Administration 
"Given that this is my first time leaving home, I am very much excited about this internship opportunity. I love this place so far, and really looking forward to working with the team, learning and networking!

Ngina Kariuki, Welleseley College 
Major: Computer Sciences
"Looking forward to an online space where we can communicate and share our stories"

Sihle Magagula, Ashesi University
Major: Computer Sciences
"I am excited to be given the opportunity to work on something that will enrich our experience as scholars, the scholars' online platform, and I hope to learn as much as I give from this experience."
Alpha Launch

May 9th we launched the alpha version of Baobab and invited the MasterCard Foundation Scholars Advisory Council to interact with the live platform. For the past few weeks, this small set of Scholars have been testing the basic community features of Baoab, such as updating profiles, posting notes and stories and commenting on other's posts. Their insights have already informed the design team a number of changes on the user interface including the need to put a higher prioritization on coding notifications for what is happening on the platform.  Every two weeks we add new functionality to test in preparation for Beta launch July 5. During Beta testing, an additional 300 users will come onto the platform giving the development team more insight on what improvements are necessary on a larger number of functionalities for a more diverse user base.

Share Your Thoughts
Now that you have heard about what we are up to, we want to hear from you on the following question. Be sure to add your name and school so that we can give you credit on the Baobab platform for your thoughts. We may take some of your answers and make them into graphics and stories on Baobab platform.

How would you define Transformative Leadership?
Share my thoughts
What We Are Reading
Each month we’ll include a couple articles that we’re reading that will give you a glimpse at the types of content that may be on the platform. 

Four students at the University of Douala turn waste into energy.
Four young students from the University of Douala in Cameroon are turning leaves and vegetable waste into clean coal to prevent people from cutting the mangroves in surrounding area. [read more]
Scientific research is the key to unlocking the Africa's potential
The founder of Africa’s first drug discovery and development centre explains why scientific research is key to unlocking the continent’s potential. [read more]
Comments or Suggestions? 
If you have feedback or questions about Baobab or the newsletter send us an email at
The goal of the Scholars Community platform is to build an online global community of Scholars that feels as engaging, accessible and supportive as a family. The online community will enable life-long learning and leadership development of all Scholars, both current and alumni.

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