2021 IREX Program Officer for Mandela Washington Fellowship Recruitment

Deadline: Unspecified

IREX works with partners in more than 100 countries in four areas essential to progress: cultivating leaders, empowering youth, strengthening institutions, and increasing access to quality education and information.

IREX seeks Program Officer candidates for the U.S. Department of State’s Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders, the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI). The Fellowship brings young leaders to the United States for academic coursework and leadership training and creates unique opportunities for Fellows and Americans to collaborate as they spur economic growth and prosperity, strengthen democratic governance, and enhance peace and security across Africa and the United State.

The Program Officer provides vision and leadership for the Mandela Washington Fellowship’s Professional Development Experiences (high-level internships), including programmatic and logistical development and implementation, budgetary oversight, data management, and staff management, including oversight of specific program components and supervision of junior staff. 


  • Manage the selection and placement of participants in professional internships; 
  • Organize a wide range of participant information and data, maintaining accuracy and completeness; 
  • Oversee and contribute to the production of program deliverables, including participant materials, resources for program partners, and program reports; 
  • Serve as lead to support partner monitoring and evaluation activities in collaboration with the Monitoring and Evaluation Officer and support internal learning, reflection and knowledge sharing around project components and/or best practices;  
  • Lead internal learning, reflection and knowledge sharing around project components and/or best practices; and 
  • Support project efforts to develop and implement virtual programming and exchange opportunities. 
  • Manage and monitor communication with program participants and partners, including communicating program updates and answering questions; and 
  • Support donor communications, including regular updates on program developments. 
  • Initiate and cultivate relationships with partner institutions, including academic, corporate, non-profit, and government partners, and vendors. 
  • Engage vendors in the procurement of Fellowship goods and services; 
  • Oversight of the housing budget and procurement process for the Professional Development Experiences; 
  • Support the accurate reconciliation of program expenses each month as needed; and 
  • Assist team leadership in tracking program expenditures and managing procurement in line with USG standards. 
  • Support team leadership in all aspects of program implementation to ensure timely and accurate completion of deliverables; 
  • Create a positive team environment adhering to IREX’s organizational values and management principles; 
  • Proactively support IREX’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) efforts; and 
  • Represent IREX and Leadership Practice Area interests both within and outside of IREX. 


  • Bachelor’s Degree 
  • 2+ years of professional experience in relevant sectors, including previous experience with professional training/development programs and/or fellowship programs 
  • Experience working with domestic and global partners or stakeholders 
  • Experience in mentoring, coaching, or other relevant leadership development work with young professionals 
  • Demonstrated experience managing others toward shared goals 
  • Demonstrated experience to proactively offer creative solutions and plan strategically to meet specified objectives with strong ability to anticipate challenges and generate solutions  
  • Experience developing virtual learning and exchange activities, and familiarity with learning management platforms; experience using Canvas a plus   
  • Proven ability to develop and maintain fruitful relationships with program participants, partners, and other project stakeholders     
  • Ability to communicate professionally, clearly, and succinctly and independently contribute outstanding verbal and written communications   
  • Outstanding cross-cultural skills and understanding of DEI concepts and how they are applied in both the workplace and in programming  
  • Excellent interpersonal and cross-cultural communication skills including problem solving, conflict resolution, and a demonstrated ability to hold self and assigned staff accountable for quality outputs and results  
  • Excellent organizational skills and ability to adhere to strict deadlines    
  • Excellent computer and data management skills, including Microsoft Office Suite   
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team 
  • You must have unrestricted authorization to work in the United States.


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