Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany, announced the names of candidates selected for her personal initiative, “I CAN – Mentorship Program” which is her contribution to empower women and youth in Africa. The winners are selected out of the Merck Foundation Alumni from the fields of healthcare, media, art, and fashion who applied for Dr. Rasha Kelej Mentorship Program to benefit from her vast experience.
Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation expressed, “I am very happy to announce my selection of 12 Merck Foundation Alumni who applied for ‘I CAN – Mentorship Program’. The aim of the program is to support and guide the selected Merck Foundation Alumni not only in their careers, but also in their personal lives. I will lead the selected mentees to explore their potential and help achieve their dreams by overcoming challenges and finding solutions with a never giving up attitude. My selected mentees will have an opportunity to interact with me in person, I will share my experience and knowledge with them to help them unleash their potential, set and achieve professional & personal goals. The end objective of this program is to help them reach their potential, fulfill their dreams, inspire others and transform under pressure in this ever evolving and competitive environment.
Congratulations to the winners, I am confident that we will make this program a great success together. For the rest of applicants, wish you all great success and happiness in your career and life.”
Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej has 29 years of experience in the international biotechnology industry and sustainable development. She is the First African Woman to be CEO of Merck Foundation and has been recognized as One of the 100 Most Influential Africans (2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022). She has been appointed as Senator at The Egyptian Senate (2020 – 2025) and plays an important role to advise with regards to African Health, Economic and Social Sustainable Development and collaboration opportunities.
Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej selected the applicants for this program based on the evaluation of their applications and their needs. This program is a personal contribution from Dr. Rasha Kelej which does not entail a reward or a job opportunity within the organization.
The selected candidates for “I CAN – Mentorship Program” are:
- Dr. David, Mwesigye, Rwanda, Medical, Consultant Obstetrician, Gynecologist, and Fertility Specialist, Women’s Health and Fertility Specialized Clinic, Merck Foundation Alumni
- Dr. Ndikumana Sudi, Burundi, Medical, CEO and Founder, Shifaa Medical Centre, Merck Foundation Alumni
- Ms. Efia Akese, Ghana, Media, Senior Reporter at The Mirror
- Ms. Rorisang Mogojwe, Botswana, Media, News Anchor and Editor, Gabz FM
- Ms. Diana Coker, Sierra Leone, Media, Production Assistant/Presenter, Community Media Network
- Ms. Sharon Kavhu, Namibia, Media, Founding Editor, Africa Health & Climate Change (AHCC) and an Independent Journalist
- Ms. Mokwe Welisane Nkeng, Cameroon, Media, Journalist, CRTV Cameroon
- Ms. Veronica R. Mrema, Tanzania, Media, Independent Health & Science Journalist
- Ms. Leticia Ashie Owusu, Ghana, Fashion Designer
- Ms. Faith Mzungu-Vilakati, Eswatini, Media, Independent Journalist
- Ms. Joel Musasa, Zambia, Fashion Designer
- Mr. Kigongo Issa, Uganda, Media, News Reporter and Presenter, Radio Bilal, Channel 44 TV
Dr. David MWESIGYE, Merck Foundation Alumni from Rwanda said “Thank you Dr. Rasha Kelej for selecting me be an I CAN Mentee. I am grateful. I look forward to learn from you and your experience that will help me in fulfilling my dreams and aspirations in life.”
Efia Ekese, Media person from Ghana working at The Mirror shared “I am excited to be part of the first group of people to be selected by Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej and look forward to a fruitful period of learning from her years of experience and service. I am particularly delighted to be part of the ‘I CAN – mentorship Program’ as aside developing myself personally and for my journalism work, I will also get the opportunity to learn from Senator Dr. Kelej’s wealth of experience.”
“I look forward to getting to know our Alumni more closely. I am very excited about this unique program to meet young enthusiastic talents across Africa,” added Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej.