What is ELP and how does it work?

Now and again, I get calls and emails on what ELP is all about and how it works. ELP means Emerging (African) Leaders Program. It is a three-year structured ethics, excellence in leadership and innovation training program for potential African Leaders. The aim of ELP is to nurture future presidents, lawmakers, governors, top-notch professionals, business entrepreneurs, CEOs and religious leaders for ethical and innovative leadership. ELP is free to accepted applicants.

To be accepted into ELP, the person must be: from Africa; between the ages of 16 and 21 years and; an undergraduate in any accredited tertiary institution in Africa. The selection process is merit-based involving written exams, oral interviews and background checks. Those accepted are inducted into ELP at our annual Emerging Leaders Foundation Conference and are recognized as Emerging Leaders by our Centre.

ELP Foundation Conference kicks off ELP training year. There are three key presentations at this conference. The first is the State of the Nation address to expose Emerging Leaders to the problems of Africa and their causes. The second is the “What I can do for Africa” speech to challenge Emerging Leaders to come up with solutions to these problems. The third is the Virtues of Emerging African Leaders speech that focuses on one of CSAAE’s Five Cardinal Virtues of future African Leaders. These Virtues include, Accountability, Solidarity, Punctuality, Integrity and Creativity.

At the end of this conference, Emerging Leaders, guided by their mentors, propose personal and community development projects to work on. Emerging Leaders work on these projects with their mentors live, online and over the phone. In June, Emerging Leaders gather again for the mid-year summit. This time, Emerging Leaders take the stage to present the progress of their projects before the mentors and their peers. This provides great opportunity for constructive feedback and exchange of ideas. At the end of the summit, mentors continue to follow up with Emerging Leaders on their initiated projects via telephone coaching. Between the foundation conference and the summit, Emerging Leaders are continuously engaged through inspirational book reading and film-viewing on ELP virtual training room. Emerging Leaders also undertake leadership building experiences to gain practical knowledge from leaders with demonstrated knowledge, experience and virtues, home and abroad. To enable them complete college, we award scholarships to Emerging Leaders struggling to pay tuition.

While in training, Emerging Leaders develop the habits of highly effective leaders, promote ethics and excellence in leadership on campus and provide innovative solutions to community problems through their community projects. Upon completion of the training, at which time they have also graduated from the University, we work with them to secure jobs or initiate enterprises in areas of market demand; support them as they work their ways to influential positions and work with them to effect positive social changes within their spheres of influence. As established leaders, they can now mentor others and partner with CSAAEINC to grow their community development projects.