BUILD-in-a-Box Dinner Party in Pictures

Over the summer, about a hundred ALA current students and alumni hosted BUILD-in-a-Box Camps across the continent.

As part of ALA’s efforts to scale the impact of its programs across the continent, students commenced the BUILD-in-a-Box Camps, for high school students in local and disadvantaged areas across Africa this year.

To reward the students who facilitated the camps, the Center For Entrepreneurial Leadership held a BUILD-in-a-Box dinner.

Check out pictures from the event here.

 

ALA on the Nigerian Scene

From international pressure concerning the anti-gay bill to attacks conducted by Boko Haram and recently, the abduction of over 200 girls from a school Borno state in Northern Nigeria in April – suffice it to say that this year has not particularly been the smoothest one for Nigeria.

The world is aware of the issues in Nigeria, particularly that of Boko Haram. The world has shown its support and willingness to help through many ways. Most people have taken photos, tweeted or updated their statuses on Facebook to “#BringBackOurGirls.” Also, the government of the United States and Britain have sent some of their officials to Nigeria  to help the country recover the kidnapped girls.
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Being a school supporting the idea of a pan-African Africa, the ALA community gathered together on Thursday, the 8th of May, on the quad to write messages about the scene in Nigeria and took pictures with their messages to add their voices to that of the world’s.

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The recent tragic happenings in Nigeria also caused the Nigerian community of ALA to come together and brainstorm ideas on how to make Nigeria a better place. ALAians Media got the chance to find out what the Nigerian community in ALA seeks to do to achieve such a goal.

The Nigerian members of the community hope to create a website that aims to motivate youth to draw media attention to the problems of Nigeria and inspire the youth to let their voice be heard in Nigeria. The idea also serves as the pilot of a project that the Entrepreneurial Leadership department encourages all first year students to implement over the summer for the Nigerian community.

The most beautiful woman in the world

The Twelve Years A Slave star, Lupita Nyong’o, was recently named People magazine’s most beautiful woman.

Some decisions made in beauty pageants and rankings of the most beautiful people in the world could be challenged because beauty as a topic itself is not only subjective but often biased. It always depends on the person judging or measuring said “beauty,” which is not clearly defined to most audiences.

Another problem such rankings seem to have is the possibility of being shallow. The category to hold the title of “Most Beautiful Woman” is not often defined and sometimes people question whether Angelina Jolie won such a title a few years ago because of her physical beauty or her kind acts of adopting children.

As a child, I grew up hearing my mother tell me that beauty comes from within and I should always be a good person. Such an idea is challenged because reasons why certain people are announced as People magazine’s “most beautiful women” are not clearly stated.

As an African teenage girl, some people think that I would be happy that Lupita was voted most beautiful right? I should feel like now I have a chance at being considered beautiful too right? Wrong.

Of course I am happy for Lupita and it definitely was a confidence boost seeing a Kenyan woman winning the title of most beautiful ,but at the same time, it was demeaning. Most articles written about Lupita’s new claim to fame mention the fact that she is African and that an African girl has made it as the most beautiful woman in the world; making it seem like by electing Lupita as most beautiful, People magazine has done Africa a favour.

Lupita was quoted saying, “I am happy for all the girls who will see me on it (the magazine) and feel a little more seen”. If anything, I feel less seen. Because I have a mass of black, coarse coils on my head instead of a buzz cut; skin a couple shades lighter than Lupita and a much bigger body – I feel as if I cannot be considered as the “beautiful” kind of African. Yes of course I am proud to see an African woman on the cover of every magazine and even happier that I have the right to say “I am East African too, you know,” every time Lupita is brought up as the topic of conversation BUT the tabloids should stop re-iterating the fact that she is African and look at her as an individual, rather than the representation of an entire continent (imagine how North Africans must be feeling). Beauty is not only subjective – it’s complicated. There is not one kind of beautiful, especially not in a continent as diverse as Africa.

This is my opinion on Lupita Nyong’o being voted the most beautiful woman in the world according to People magazine. Let ALAians Media know yours.

What Makes an African?

What makes an “authentic” African? Who is an “authentic” African? I often spend hours asking myself : Will I be an “authentic” African if I put away my biological individualism and refer to myself as one? Will I be an “authentic” African when I become familiar with all her countries? I speak fluent Hausa (the most common language spoken in northern Nigeria), I wear pants from Senegal, walk in Moroccan slippers and eat South African pap, yet I am not starving. I did not witness genocide. I have never suffered from drought. I do not cook using firewood and I do not live in a shed. I’ve had malaria more than three times and I am still alive and healthy. Am I not “authentically” African? Continue reading “What Makes an African?”

Education for Africa, by Africa.

The African Baccalaureate is an Original Idea for Development which seeks to transform education on the African continent by creating a holistic curriculum geared at producing innovative, creative and passionate young Africans.

The idea for the AB was borne out of its founders’ frustration with the current systems of education across Africa – many of which are remnants of colonial legacy. Continue reading “Education for Africa, by Africa.”