For decades, Mac’s admissions staff has traveled the world to meet with prospective students. This year for the first time, the recruitment effort connected with a college access initiative in Ghana and Rwanda—thanks in part to an alumna who helped create the program.

In 2013, grad student Helinna Ayalew ’10 was part of a group of African students at Yale University who wanted to share their insights about attending college in the United States. That vision has grown into Yale Young African Scholars, a program that identifies, trains, and mentors African students as they pursue higher education in their home countries and all over the world. Each weeklong YYAS summer session brings together students from across the continent to introduce them to the college application process—and this year, staff invited representatives from colleges that support financial aid for international students.

Mac associate director of admissions Elyan Paz and colleagues from five other institutions led discussions with students, counselors, and educators on financial aid, case studies, and their respective colleges. (And Ayalew, now a YYAS project manager, wasn’t the only Mac connection: The program also included students from the African Leadership Academy founded by Fred Swaniker ’99.) “This program was a wonderful opportunity to meet students, counselors and teachers from around the continent,” Paz says. “Our goals are the same: to educate and empower students.”


November 2 2017

Back to top