BusinessDay

Five Nigerians listed among 2nd cohort of Rise Global winners

Schmidt Futures, in partnership with the Rhodes Trust, announced the second cohort of 100 Rise Global Winners and five Nigerians made the list.

Rise finds brilliant people who need opportunity and supports them for life as they work to serve others.

The five Nigerians are; Asher Segun-Olasanmi from Ile Ife, a mental health advocate; Emmanuela Ilok from Lagos, who developed a program called ‘CodEd’ which offered teacher training programs and Ikenna Charles Nwafor from Abeokuta, who created awareness on the importance of cybersecurity in the lives of teenagers in Nigeria as cases of cyber-attacks continue to grow in the country with the onset of the COVID pandemic.

Others are Mokwe Uche David from Aba, who created a nonprofit called PCS, which fosters effective waste management by leveraging the combined effort of youth volunteers and Naomi Ifunanya Marizu Obinwa from Lekki, who is dedicated to reducing inequalities and discrimination through education.

“We are looking for extraordinarily bright people everywhere because genius can have an outsized impact on improving the world when applied to its hardest problems,” said Eric Schmidt, co-founder of Schmidt Futures.

“Building a network of brilliant young people who want to make the world better is a key goal of Rise. Development in today’s world depends on people working together.”

The 2022 Rise Global Winners include youth aiming to promote literacy among underprivileged children; predict the effect of Alzheimer’s drugs using bioinformatics; create a sustainable gummy vitamin that combats anemia; educate communities on mental health stigmas and many more.

With over 22 new countries represented this year, the global program continues to further expand its network with a broader range of talented young leaders from diverse backgrounds, including applicants from over 170 countries.

Schmidt Futures’ mission is to bet early on exceptional people making the world better. Betting on young people between the ages of 15-17 and potentially staying with them for life, Rise is both the earliest and the longest bet on talent in Schmidt Futures’ portfolio.

Read also: GIZ trains youths, women in plastic waste recycling business

This year, Rise is proud to have five Global Winners hailing from Nigeria and is honored to collaborate with organizations such as NBA Africa, the African Leadership Academy, HALI Network, and BUILD Nigeria. Their efforts to promote Rise, support youth in applying and provide exciting programming opportunities, contributed to the second year of success across the country.

“Today’s announcement of the Rise Winners is not the conclusion of a process, but rather the starting point for the young people in the program,” said Wendy Schmidt, co-founder of Schmidt Futures and president of The Schmidt Family Foundation.

“They will have continuing opportunities to change the world for the better as they continue their education and find ways to collaborate,” Schmidt said.

“We are counting on them to become future leaders, using their collective gifts to help solve the world’s most challenging problems.”

Rise remains intentionally broad both in the selection of talent and in their projects to help unveil hidden brilliance, in whatever form it takes, wherever it is in the world.

The program further prides itself in recognizing brilliance with unique perspectives and across various focus areas, skills, and issues.

Since its inception, Rise has welcomed over 150,000 people from over 170 countries to its community, and has selected 200 winners from 69 countries of origin.

“We believe that the answers to the world’s toughest problems lie in the imagination of the world’s brightest minds,” said Eric Braverman, CEO of Schmidt Futures.

“Rise is an integral part of our mission to create the best, largest, and most enduring pipeline of exceptional talent globally and match it to opportunities to serve others for life.”

Applications for the next class will open in October 2022. Interested applicants can visit the website to apply.

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