During the course of my fellowship, I decided to volunteer for the Atlas Corps Selection boards as an Applications Reviewer and Candidate Interviewer. Reading through the essays of potential candidates and interviewing some of them exposed me to learn a lot in regard to how emerging social change makers are disrupting(in a good way) the social change sector as a whole. During the interviews, almost ninety percent of the candidates and almost all my friends back home asked me the question; “ how was the fellowship experience?”
The first time I was asked “the experience” question, I mumbled and I didn’t know what to answer. I thought maybe I could talk about the new friends I made, maybe the host organization or maybe the personal life? As time went on, I started getting the question often and each time I was asked, I had different responses depending on how much time I had to answer, otherwise, I’d spend the whole day talking about everything from; losing direction for the way back home after a long day, to Boston parties with new friends, amazing fellows, to being a delegate at some prestigious gatherings.
Well; some experiences and lessons are worth sharing without being asked because they are just awesome and worthy. The number one experience that I always share is the time when I was identified as one of the Twenty-four emerging leaders from around the world to convene in the at University of Virginia under during the global leadership forum 2019 to delve into the framework of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to examine cases of effective cross-sector partnerships that are advancing SGDs. I had the opportunity to strengthen my leadership capacities, engaged with experts in the field, and built my global professional network of dynamic changemakers crucial in influencing the attainment of SDGs. This experience and many others have prepared me to always be self-aware by knowing the skills I bring to the table and knowing my flaws. This helps me to identify people and mentors who can challenge my weakness with candour. Additionally, it helps me provide an enabling environment for people to provide me with feedback.