Meet Our Inaugural Class of Fellows
This past winter, we launched the Roundtrip Consulting Group to provide pro-bono consulting support to early-stage African startups. Our incredibly amazing consultants spent 3 months supporting 7 startups across countries like Nigeria, Ghana, Rwanda, and more. While there was an immense amount of value created and received by our consultants and startups to one another, we felt that we hadn’t quite achieved what we had set out to do.
At Roundtrip Afrika, our core mission is to catalyze the next generation of African founders from across the continent and the diaspora. In order to hone in on this mission, we adjusted our model based on the learnings from running our consulting group. This led to the creation of the Roundtrip Fellowship to find and support young Africans across the continent and the diaspora who were in the very early stages of building a venture or who were looking for people to launch ventures with. Our fellowship is designed to provide our fellows with a tailored curriculum on startup fundamentals, access to support and insights from successful African founders and investors, and a community of fellow Africans to build the next generation of African companies with.
After a successful application process that began in early September, we are super excited to announce our inaugural batch of fellows to the world. Our 19 fellows representing 8 African countries were carefully selected from a pool of over 50 applicants and will spend the next 10 weeks as fellows with us working on their startups while receiving tailored support from our team and from impressive folks in the African tech ecosystem such as Maya Horgan Famodu, GP at Ingressive Capital, Kennedy Ekezie, CEO at Africave and Creft, Chuba Ezekwesili, Partner at Future Africa, Kyane Kassiri, Senior Associate at Lateral Capital, and so many more.
Read on to meet our fellows!
Olamide is a Nigerian and Pan-African who is constantly looking to build new products that people find delightful across Africa. He is a graduate of Bowen University in Nigeria and has a strong software engineering background. Olamide has a wide range of startup experiences ranging from spending time at the prestigious MEST Africa program, successfully raising a pre-seed round for his previous startup, and leading his most recent startup through an acquisition among other impressive experiences. He is excited to meet and build with fellow African changemakers passionate about building technology solutions around and across Africa
Ali is is a recent graduate of Florida A&M University where he attained a B.S in Business Administration with a focus on Finance. During his time at FAMU, he served as the President of Chief Financiers Organization, where he launched “CFO X NYC” an initiative that provides undergraduate students the opportunity to interact with bulge bracket banks. Prior to interning with Wells Fargo and Berkshire Group, Ali founded a profitable business in high school, was selected as one of the Allen Entrepreneurial Institute Fellows, and won MuniMod, the largest civic tech competition in the state of Florida. Ali was selected as 1 of 6 students to be a part of the inaugural cohort of the Black Venture Capital Consortium where he spent three weeks training in NYC before starting his internship at MaC Venture Capital in Los Angeles, CA. Ali is also a 2020 Venture for America fellow and can’t wait to spend time with the Roundtrip community of fellows.
Rachael is a freshman at the University of Pennsylvania intending to concentrate in Finance and Business Analytics. Originally from Ghana, she is drawn towards the Roundtrip Afrika Fellowship because it allows her to be at the forefront of the innovative technological revolution occurring throughout African countries. Prior to this fellowship, Rachael Co-founded VJP Media Marketing, a digital marketing agency that aims to uplift and grow women-founded businesses. In the past, Rachael explored her love for start-up culture by interning at Desircle, a freelance design platform and Novelly, an ed-tech nonprofit aimed at empowering young people. Most recently, Rachael developed a passion for venture capital as part of Dorm Room Fund’s Inaugural Blueprint Investor Track Cohort. In her free time, Rachael enjoys reading, traveling, trying new things, and meeting new people.
Mark is a junior at Minerva in San Francisco and originally from Rwanda where he grew up. He is currently interning as an Operations Analyst at Autodesk, a tech company, and has experience working on projects in San Francisco, South Korea, India, U.K., and Uganda. During the fellowship, he looks forward to pursuing his interests in leveraging technology to solve some of Africa’s biggest challenges such as youth unemployment.
Dennis is a Nigerian currently studying Business Administration at Nexford University. He was previously a product analyst at Opay and is now the Director of research at Citural, a research and virtual support firm where he curates a newsletter on African tech with over 5k readers across Africa. He is also a fintech expert and has worked and consulted with numerous fintech companies and startups in Nigeria. He is excited to be a part of the Roundtrip Fellowship for the opportunity to mind-meld with fellow Africans passionate about using technology to solve the continent’s biggest problems.
Angela is a passionate Rwandan entrepreneur currently focusing on creating innovative solutions that will solve some of Africa’s challenges that exist in infrastructure. She is committed to creating innovative solutions for, by, and of Africans which is why she joined Roundtrip Afrika Fellowship. She is a current student at the African Leadership University in Kigali, Rwanda and is currently majoring in International Business and Trade. Angela spent the past few months interning at the Rwanda Development Board helping major Rwandan government agencies manage relationships with external investors, and she gets her drive from the many sports documentaries she watches.
Alfred is a senior undergraduate student studying Computer Science at the Illustrious North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University and is originally from Ghana. During his undergraduate career, Alfred developed a passion for Cyber Security and had the opportunity to intern with Cisco Systems Inc. as a Security Solutions Engineer. As a fellow in Management Leadership of Tomorrow and TAVtech, he has had the opportunity to study abroad, gain skills in entrepreneurship and strategy, as well as be a positive influencer. Alfred served as the Vice-President of North Carolina A&T’s Aggie Cyber Defenders, a Cyber Security special interest group that created a personalized cyber-security curriculum for minority high-school students including presentations from prominent figures within the industry and competitions. Along with his passion to create an impact within the West African ecosystem, Alfred enjoys playing Basketball, experiencing new cultures, and loves listening to Afrobeats by his favorite artists Burna Boy and Fela Kuti.
As defined by the current borders of Africa, Keoagile is South African, however, he prefers to self identify as an African man of the BaTswana people. Holding a BSc Computer Science degree from the University of Pretoria, Keoagile has been involved in several freelance projects and startups where the scope of work included building augmented reality-based mobile & web solutions for the travel industry, rapid concept & prototype development for small-medium enterprises, building a big data analytics platform, a context-agnostic billing engine and an application performance monitoring tool among other things. He enjoys outdoor activities that enable him to be immersed in the natural environment around him, ranging from parkour to playing sports such as basketball. The Roundtrip Afrika fellowship resonates with him because their mission & vision appeals to his desire to bring about a change in the narrative of Africa. He believes that through inspiring a united Africa through reinforcing the morals, values, beauty, and strength of the black identity and cultivating innovative ways through which we as Africans can be empowered, may help spark a change in our current and/or future generation(s) to uplift our people out of this current state. It’s not enough to just realize our potential as Africans, but rather harness it in a collaborative effort to rebuild our beloved nation and improve the quality of life of the African child — instead of perpetuating the culture of leaving Africa in pursuit of a better life.
Emmanuel is a native Ghanaian and is the co-founder of logistics startup Boxconn. He seeks to make a significant impact in the lives of the people around him by solving pressing problems through entrepreneurship. While in the university he co-founded a couple of startups and is very much keen on solving problems in the logistics space. He has knowledge in Business and Technology and graduated from the University of Ghana Business School in 2019. He loves reading books that transport him out of the world and also loves to spend time with nature. He is excited to join Roundtrip Afrika Fellowship because he believes he can learn so much and connect with people on the same journey.
Coco is a senior at Vanderbilt studying computer science. She worked as a Summer Business Systems Analyst Intern at Deloitte and recently completed an internship with Microsoft as a Software Engineer. At school, she works with Vanderbilt Women in Computer Science and is a rower with Vanderbilt Crew. Coco is originally from Nairobi, Kenya, and is excited to join the Roundtrip Afrika Fellowship and build for Africa.
Kevin is a Senior at Vanderbilt University studying Chemical Engineering. He is originally from Nigeria and is passionate about job creation and increasing access to opportunities for Africans. Over the course of his college experience, he has been involved in global health projects, biophotonics research, and driving meaningful impacts in the organizations he was a part of. He also interned at The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and will be joining the firm’s Houston office as a full-time associate. Kevin is excited to join the Roundtrip Afrika community to learn and share ideas.
Jemimah is a Ugandan student at Abilene Christian University (TX, USA), majoring in Business Management and double minoring in Psychology and International Relations with a concentration in Leadership of Organizations. Her experience with start-ups have mostly involved monetizing passions like Jewelry making as well as learned skills such as liquid soap making through her start-ups, ‘Jemstone Designs’, and ‘Charis’, respectively. She got the privilege to work as the CEO of an Event Media start-up, ‘SnapThat’, through her university’s venture program (Wildcat Ventures ACU) encompassing 7 student-founded and run businesses funded by the university to generate sustained momentum for leaders to thrive in order to create a culture of redemptive business in the world. She is excited to join the Roundtrip Afrika Fellowship because she is a fanatic about learning, personal and intellectual growth, team building, and problem-solving of which she intends to experience all the above in my time with this cohort. In her free time, she loves a good Greek mythology book, traveling, singing, and dancing.
Erskine is a native Kenyan in his junior year studying Computer Science at Vanderbilt University. He has past experience working on data science and backend development projects with companies such as Facebook. He is passionate about working with social ventures that use tech to positively impact communities and improve lives in Africa. As a Roundtrip Afrika fellow, he hopes to leverage his experiences on exceptional ideas that will define Africa’s entrepreneurial space for years to come.
Ibukunoluwa is a final year undergraduate student at the Federal University of Agriculture, in Nigeria where he is from, studying Computer Science. Ibukunoluwa started building startups at 17 and prior to building Afriktrip, Ibukunoluwa built Cralocs -Like Airbnb, but for Film Locations- and spent time working with the First City Monument Bank PLC as an IT Banking Application intern. On-campus, Ibukunoluwa is a member of the Student Representative Assembly and a Handball Silver Medalist. Outside of school and startup work, Ibukunoluwa is a big lover of sports, reading memoirs, listening to good music, occasional writing, and talking about politics. He is excited about joining the inaugural class of Roundtrip Afrika fellowship because it is a one-of-a-kind fellowship that will give him the opportunity to mingle with like minds building the future of Africa.
Akinlua is a third-year Software Engineering student at The Federal University of Technology Akure(FUTA) with a concentration in backend engineering and DevOps. Akinlua works as a backend engineer at Mycarebuddy where he designs systems that help provide mental health services to users in an accessible and affordable way. Prior to this he also helped build a startup, Gotlodge, that helped students secure accommodation in a fast and convenient way. He is from Nigeria and outside of his passion for building large scale distributed systems, Akinlua is interested in the future of work and how it will help transform startup development in Africa. In his free time, he enjoys watching movies, math, and reading how things work. He is excited to join the Roundtrip Afrika Fellowship because of the unique opportunity to network with experienced people and mentors who are excited about his ideas and are dedicated to making them a reality.
Daniel is Ethiopian and is a senior at Georgia State University where he is studying Finance. During his time at GSU, he has spent time as a Summer Analyst at Nomura Securities and Vanguard, consulted for the African Chamber of Commerce, and was a member of BLK Capital Management as a Research Analyst. Daniel is also the co-founder of a fintech startup called EthioPay where he and his team are building a platform to meet the unique payment needs of Ethiopians in the diaspora. His life experiences have shown him the value in opportunities such as Roundtrip Afrika and he believes that the fellowship will allow him to multiply his value while exploring opportunities in Africa.