Kofi Annan Scholarship
In 2020 Mansfield welcomed its second ever
cohort of Kofi Annan scholars of the Weidenfeld-Hoffmann graduate programme.
These scholarships have been named for the former Secretary-General of the United Nations and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Kofi Annan (1938-2018), who officially opened the Bonavero Institute of Human Rights at Mansfield in June 2018.
The Weidenfeld-Hoffmann Scholarships and Leadership Programme aims to provide outstanding university graduates and professionals from developing and emerging economies with the opportunity to pursue study at Oxford. In addition to their studies, the
graduates participate in a tailor-made
Leadership programme to give them additional
practical skills and opportunities.
The Kofi Annan Scholarships at Mansfield represent a new partnership between the University of Oxford’s Weidenfeld-Hoffmann Scholarships and Leadership Programme and the College, and have been made possible thanks to the generosity of Mansfield alumnus, Jan Fischer (PPE, 1989).
Kofi Annan Scholars (2022-23)
Yitong has just completed an LLB from Peking University, China. During her undergraduate degree, she worked as a teaching and research assistant in economics and international law. Yitong has conducted extensive research on the regulation of labour outsourcing, facial recognition, and transborder data flow. Her most recent work focuses on the jurisdictional conflicts related to cross-border data access requests and the challenges faced by the service providers. Yitong is also the senior counsel of Avoice, a charity providing legal assistance to overseas Asian women subject to domestic violence. She aspires to facilitate international cooperation to eliminate the global digital divide and to promote human rights protection through techno-legal mechanisms.
MSc Biodiversity, Conservation and Management
Melissa is a development professional from Peru with a focus on rural development. She holds a bachelor's degree in Social Management from the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru. Over the past five years, she has worked in project planning, monitoring, and evaluation, and mainstreaming the gender approach in sustainable agriculture, forest conservation and climate change adaptation projects. Moreover, in the last years, she has been fostering private sector engagement with rural communities by building alliances with companies on the cocoa and coffee value chains to implement projects for the benefit of smallholder farmers in the Peruvian Amazon. Peru is one of the top 17 megadiverse countries and has second place in forest extension in South America (69,1 million hectares of Amazonian Forest). However, it is currently facing many threats that increase biodiversity loss and put local communities that rely on ecosystem services for livelihoods, food and water at risk. Given this context and her work experience, Melissa was inspired to pursue an MSc in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management at the University of Oxford in an attempt to have a new approach to the pathways Peru could take to ensure forest conservation while improving local and underserved communities' life quality.
MSc Sustainability, Enterprise and the Environment
Obaid is an Oxford-Weidenfeld & Hoffman Kofi Annan Scholar from Mansfield College studying the MSc in Sustainability, Enterprise and the Environment. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Crescent University, Chennai, and has over seven years of experience in vehicular emissions and regulations. Previously, he worked at the Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) and, in his most recent assignment, played a crucial role in drafting AIS 175 D0 regulation for India. The proposed emission standards will align Indian motor vehicle regulations with European Union regulations for light-duty passenger cars and commercial vehicles. In the long run, as a subject matter expert, he is looking to take up opportunities in the automotive, oil, FMCG and consulting industries to integrate sustainability into their core business models and focus on environmental protection, carbon neutrality, circularity and zero-waste.
Annatu Neina Abdulai
Masters of Business Administration
Annatu is a 2023 MBA Candidate at the Said Business School. Most recently, she was the Programmes Partner for Ghana at the Mastercard Foundation, where she contributed to the design and management of the Foundation's Ghana initiatives. She is an Advisory Committee Member of African Women Amplified; a digital platform project that addresses system-level challenges faced by West African women entrepreneurs. She is also an Advisory Board Member of ThinkEducation; an education consultancy that supports low-fee private schools in Ghana to provide quality education. Over nine years, in different capacities, she has supported over 100 entrepreneurs across various sectors to build up their businesses. Her roles have included mentoring and coaching, business strategy, and investment-readiness consulting. She was a founding team member of Growth Mosaic; a B-Corpcertified social purpose business consultancy for social impact businesses in Ghana. Annatu graduated with a Cum Laude in BSc. Business Administration from Ashesi University, and she is a Certified Project Management Professional.
MSc Evidence-Based Social Intervention and Policy Evaluation
Kimberley holds a BSc in Social Science with a major in Economics and Political Science and a minor in Philosophy from Minerva University. Before Oxford, Kimberley worked with organizations in Kenya, the United States, and the United Kingdom on projects related to improving access to education, youth development, and the provision of reproductive health services for vulnerable populations over the course of four years. These experiences have inspired her to pursue an MSc in Evidence-based Social Intervention & Policy Evaluation, where she hopes to develop her research and policy evaluation skills. Kimberley intends to use her skillset to design developmental policies that empower and actively promote the participation of women and youth in economic and social development in East Africa.
Master of Public Policy
Samia Mehraj is studies public policy at Blavatnik School of Government as a Weidenfeld Hoffman scholar. Previously, she worked with UNICEF as a data and tech lead to the Government of J&K, spearheading various interventions in the domain of child education. Samia has worked with various Indian state governments, economists and multilateral organizations – for 5 years to better outcomes in the domains of maternal and child health, nutrition, industrial development and public education.
Samia has formal education in engineering, liberal arts and environmental law. In 2018, she graduated from Ashoka University’s Young India Fellowship as a Deutsche Bank Scholar. Additionally, Samia writes and is currently authoring a book of short stories set in Kashmir with prestigious South Asia Speaks Literary programme.
MSc Modern Middle Eastern Studies
Meyrav is a decade-long journalist from Israel. She gained experience in various media platforms – radio, print, social media, and television. She did her BA in Psychology and English Literature at Tel Aviv University. Before university, she was a social activist, mostly in the queer community in Israel. This led her to work during her studies as an equality coordinator in her university’s student body. In this position, Meyrav oversaw promoting and assisting disadvantaged student groups, such as LGBTQA+ individuals and people with physical and cognitive disabilities. She currently works as an associate producer on the international, Jaffa-based English TV channel i24NEWS. Her focus is Middle Eastern affairs and gender-related stories. Meyrav aspires to use various media platforms to familiarize her society, the Israeli one, with the Palestinian culture, history, and narrative.
Kofi Annan Scholars (2021-22)
Marcela Arias Moncada
Master of Public Policy
Marcela is a Honduran lawyer, feminist, and activist for social change. Her motivations are rooted in the political exile and criminal processes she and her family endured as a consequence of the coup d’état in 2009. Ever since then, Marcela acquired a critical sense of criminal justice and eventually, the public sector in general. Marcela joined the Honduran feminist movement in 2018 and conducted strategic planning processes for Somos Muchas, the biggest feminist platform in Honduras. Within this framework, she cofounded the National Meeting of Women and developed the first research on the criminalization of women for the crime of abortion in Honduras. As a Human Rights Officer at the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Marcela acquired expertise in the areas of employment and economic development. She is currently writing about the impact each of these areas has on human rights and expects to continue research on the accountability of private sector on human rights matters.
Master of Public Policy
Tsionawit has worked in humanitarian organisations for over six years, most recently as the Regional Program Advisor for the Danish Refugee Council (DRC) in North Africa. Her work has focused on conducting research and delivering humanitarian assistance to refugees and migrants. Tsionawit is pursuing a Master of Public Policy from the Blavatnik School of Government and aims to work in policy making role, promoting migration for development, and enhancing the protection of refugees and migrants. She completed a BA (Hons) in Economics and Sociology from the University of Tasmania.
César Sanchez Casares
Master of Public Policy
Before starting the MPP, César was a Knowledge Management Supervisor in Mercado Libre Inc, the largest e-commerce and fintech company in Latin America, where he led corporate education and knowledge strategy projects. Formerly, he was Manager of University Liaison in the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, where he created and implemented the government's first policy on talent attraction and international education. This helped to significantly increase the number of international students in the local universities. César believes that high-quality education related to productive needs is a key tool to boost development in Latin America. In the future, he intends to become a problem-solver and decision-maker in the areas of education and knowledge transfer, helping to foster the connections between the education system and the production network. César holds a bachelor’s degree in Modern Languages from the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, and an Executive MBA degree from IAE Business School.
Lucia Artavia Guzman
MSc in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management
After Lucia graduated as an architect from Universidad de Costa Rica and as an urban and transportation planner from the University of Pennsylvania, she has devoted her professional experience to urban, regional and transportation planning, with an emphasis on land use planning, transport oriented development and environmental assessment, where she has worked for local governments, academia and NGOs. Over the past 3.5 years, she has worked as an advisor in urban, transportation, and territorial planning for the Presidential team of Costa Rica. Her country is very small, yet extremely biodiverse, with a solid conservation network. Given her background in urban and regional planning, she understood that all comprehensive territorial planning efforts in Costa Rica need to bring biodiversity and conservation into the picture. This is key for the management of natural resources, transition or buffer areas and overall sustainability. which inspired her to pursue a MSc in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management at the University of Oxford. Her main interests related to her master course are the integration of urban development with conservation and biodiversity, particularly inter-urban biological corridors, buffer areas, urban growth boundaries and conservation connectivity.
MSc in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management
Ebenezer has a BSc in Natural and Environmental Sciences from the American University of Nigeria. He also holds a PGDip in Remote Sensing and Geographic Information System from the African Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education-English. He has worked in Ghana as a Director of ATMOS Limited, a government consultancy he co-founded to provide WASH solutions. After he completed his mandatory national service, he started working with Nigeria's federal government as a Scientific Officer in the National Space Research and Development Agency. At Oxford, he is pursuing an MSc in Biodiversity, Conservation, and Management where he seeks to develop expert knowledge on human wildlife conflict and park management systems. In the future, he intends to be a conservation leader in Nigeria.
MSc in Evidence-based Social Intervention & Policy Evaluation
Ishaan is an Oxford-Weidenfeld & Hoffman Kofi Annan Scholar from Mansfield College studying the MSc in Evidence-based Social Intervention & Policy Evaluation. He did his undergraduate study at the University of Delhi majoring in Economics, and comes with 6 years of experience cutting across the domains of education, sanitation and political consulting. Ishaan wishes to use his learnings at Oxford to bring about a more robust and data-backed policy climate in rural India.
MSc in African Studies
Olivia holds a BA in Business Management with a minor in African and African American Studies (AAAS) from Earlham College. Before Oxford, she worked as a programme coordinator and consultant at Global Environment and Technology Foundation (GETF) in Virginia, supporting the implementation, day-to-day management, and closeout of Replenish Africa Initiative (RAIN) projects across the African continent to improve sustainable access to Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) services for over 6 million Africans. During her undergraduate studies, Olivia became one of the founding members of Mashinani Farmers Initiative. This agricultural start-up empowers young rural farmers in Kenya to improve their food production and revenues simultaneously. In 2017, she has also led a project that aimed to fight against infant mortality in her home country Burkina Faso. This project has helped over 100 mothers and their children living in disadvantaged areas in Ouagadougou gain access to free health insurance. Olivia is committed to contributing to the development of the African continent through interdisciplinary solutions for a sustainable future. This commitment, rooted in her upbringing and unique experiences growing up in Burkina Faso, has inspired her to pursue the MSc in African
Studies at Oxford. She is passionate about supporting development programmes that help improve human dignity while simultaneously empowering women and youth on her beloved continent.