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Partnerships Director
Young African Leaders' Initiative (YALI) 

at Arizona State University

Location: Nairobi, Kenya




Arizona State University seeks qualified candidates to serve as Partnership Director on an anticipated USAID project supporting the next-generation expression of the Regional Leadership Centers (RLC) component of the Young African Leadership Initiative (YALI), the United States’ premier investment in young African leaders. As the on-continent component of the YALI program, in 2015 USAID launched four YALI RLCs at higher education institutions in Ghana, Kenya, Senegal, and South Africa. The RLCs have provided access to leadership and functional training to 22,000 young leaders aged 18–35 from 49 sub-Saharan countries in three tracks: business and entrepreneurship, public management, and civic leadership. YALI 2030 will build on the RLC foundation to create an expanded pan-African youth development model that will harmonize training curriculum, serve underrepresented/underserved youth, build alumni network capacity and professional development opportunities, and develop new program-related partnerships with the private sector and other stakeholders and donors. The Partnership Director of YALI 2030 will be based in an African country and support project sustainability through creating and sustaining public/private partnerships. ASU has hosted YALI Mandela Washington Fellows annually since 2014, led public management cohorts at the East Africa Regional Leadership Center, collaborates with the Mastercard Foundation on an eLearning Initiative with African universities, implemented higher education projects for USAID with multiple universities on the continent, and maintains an African hub and a network of alumni through ASU-Thunderbird School of Global Management.


Reporting to the Chief of Party (COP), the Partnerships Director’s primary responsibility is to interact with YALI RLC potential partners in the public, private and civic sectors to develop a robust sustainability program that ensures the long-term success of the RLCs and increase services for YALI alumni.


This position is based in Nairobi, Kenya and is contingent upon award funding.


  • Interact with YALI RLC local (and potential) partners in the private sector, NGOs, and government sector to support YALI programming, partnership, internships, and long-term funding.

  • Support and build capacity of the RLC’s regional advisors , directors  and staff in interacting with private sector industry, NGOs, and stakeholders

  • Assist in the development of the partner-funded opportunities to benefit YALI alumni

  • Assist in the interactions and development of the YALI alumni networks.

  • Broker partnerships with  private sector partners, national ministry, donor partners, and international organization partners; and Support the COP in conferring with USAID management on strategic issues to maximize impact and scale,

  • Draft MOUs and finalize agreements with the partner initiatives

  • Assist in the development of workshops, mentoring, and hands-on assistance in preparing fundraising and sponsored-research proposals and presenting requests to companies and donors.

  • Support YALI RLCs in developing Advisory Boards relevant to each center’s activities

  • Expand existing professional networks, develop, and implement an industry outreach program and internship programs to match opportunities with YALI students and alumni.

  • Work with the stakeholders to develop partnerships aligned with youth sector needs and identify sources of financing for sustainability

  • Organize regular workshops, seminars, and think-tank meetings.

  • Present and market YALI to a wide variety of external groups and businesses to gather support for alumni opportunities, internships, and job placement.

  • Fostering and maintaining effective, professional relations with a broad range of government counterparts, private sector, education and training institutions, local organizations and other donors.

  •  Assist the COP Lead co- creation activities in preparation for the annual work plans, liaison the 4LRC’s and National governments.

  • Support other technical leads to integrate partnership technical activities across all objective areas

  • Support the program to build the capacity of Yali Africa   to strengthen its governance practices, management and mobilize resources.

  • Other related duties as assigned.


  • Advanced degree in youth workforce /higher education, social sciences or related field, MBA or related business degree.

  • Established connection with YALI potential partners, 10 years of experience in business development or private sector engagement.

  • Knowledge of industry partners particularly the agriculture and green energy sectors; entrepreneurship and business operation strategies.

  • Knowledge of fundraising.

  • Skill in planning, analyzing, coordinating activities, and establishing priorities.

  • Effective communication skills, both written and verbal.

  • Ability to market concepts to a diverse audience in varying functional disciplines.

  • Ability to work effectively in a fast-paced dynamic environment subject to quickly changing priorities and potentially conflicting deadlines.

  • National from one of the YALI implementing countries strongly preferred.

  • Fluency in written and spoken English and evidence of strong oral and written communications skills, Knowledge of French and added advantage.



Arizona State University is a public learning enterprise, and our mission is to collaborate with higher education and youth development systems around the world to transform the model for preparing learners to create solutions for global challenges. ASU began its own intentional redesign for access, excellence, and impact in 2002. Six years later, Newsweek hailed ASU as “one of the most radical redesigns in higher learning since the modern research university took shape.” By 2016 and again for the following seven years, U.S. News and World Report has named ASU the #1 innovative U.S. university. ASU ranks #1 in the U.S. and #2 globally for university impact on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (Times Higher Education, 2022). ASU is eager to collaborate with and learn alongside youth development enterprises in emerging economies to meet shared and escalating challenges young people face globally. Since 2010, ASU has successfully implemented projects in the Middle East and North Africa, sub-Saharan Africa, Southeast and Central Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean for USAID, the State Department, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, the Inter-American Development Bank, and private sector donors including foundations such as Mastercard and Gates. Through its University Design Institute, ASU is partnering with 90 institutions in 20 countries to assist universities that seek to catalyze lifelong learning and professional development for young leaders. Deriving from our call to “measure us not by whom we exclude but by whom we include and how they succeed,” positive youth development is core to everything ASU does to prepare young people to impact the equitable governance, prosperity, and resilience of their societies.


This job description summarizes the main duties of the job. It neither prescribes nor restricts the exact tasks that may be assigned to carry out these duties. This document should not be construed in any way to represent a contract of employment. ASU reserves the right to review and revise this document at any time.

ASU is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or veteran status.


How To Apply: Qualified applicants should submit a CV and cover letter highlighting fit for the position to with the subject line "ASU YALI Partnerships Director”

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