US embassy welcomes business exchange participants

The US has welcomed a 12-member team taking part in this year’s edition of the Business and Entrepreneurship Exchange Program (BEEP).

Six Zimbabweans and the same number of Zambians are this year’s participants in BEEP, an innovative leadership development program funded by the US Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

From Zimbabwe are Tafadza Makura, Tawanda Chikosi, Moreblessing Sigauke, Gerald Mangena, Nonto Masuku and Rinesh Desai while the remainder from Zambia are Kakoma Mutenda, Martin Phiri, Virginia Chitengu Rice, Kayula Mulenga, Vwanganji Bowa and Mbozi Tatila.

Under the program, the 12 emerging business leaders from Zambia and Zimbabwe are set to visit the United States for a four-week program where they will work with American businesses and community-based organisations.

The visiting participants’ professional placements are supplemented with skills-based workshops, community site visits, and attendance at a culminating conference in Washington D.C.

Meridian International Center, in partnership with the Zambian based Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), implements the exchange program which supports international cooperation and builds networks of people and organisations working on critical issues worldwide.

“These diverse and dynamic participants from different provinces of Zambia and Zimbabwe were selected from a competitive pool with over

300 applications received from interested entrepreneurs,” read a statement by the US Embassy Public Affairs Section statement.

“Their placements are in the states of North Carolina and Colorado where an additional eight American participants will be selected to participate in a two-week reciprocal program to Zambia and Zimbabwe in early 2015.”

According to a US embassy Public Affairs statement, recruitment for the next cohort for BEEP will take place this month.

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