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October 2017

3 EFAC Fellows Win Leadership Awards

During the 2017 EFAC commencement exercises, three graduates were honored with leadership awards that have been generously endowed by EFAC board member George Trumbull. Each award came with a stipend to be evenly divided between the recipient and the EFAC Student Association alumni organization.

Stacy and Fridah arrive in July 2017

Samwel Mwiko was awarded the Lynda Trumbull Community Service Award, named in honor of George Trumbull's late wife. The award recognizes a graduate who has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to community service, one of the key tenets of our EFAC program. Lynda Trumbull strongly believed that each person has an obligation to support the broader community.

Samwel's continuing gratitude for the opportunities he received from EFAC is regularly demonstrated by his commitment to helping others. While volunteering as a teacher in his local primary school, Samwel developed a database to manage school activities. Later, working with his EFAC friend Kelvin, Samwel started a community mentoring initiative that motivates young people to continue in school. Not only does he mentor younger EFAC scholars, Samwel also volunteers at two primary schools in Kibera as part of our formal mentoring programs there. He is well known in the EFAC family as a "big brother" to all, hosting fellow scholars despite his very limited means and devoting both time and energy to lifting up those who need support and encouragement. Samwel continues to accomplish all of this while pursuing a degree in Electrical Engineering from Kenyatta University. He is a graduate of Rongai Boys' School, and has been sponsored by William and Sandra Givens. (Samwel is pictured here with Bill Givens and Prof. Leah Marangu)


Sadia Abdulahi Salo was awarded the Prof. Leah Marangu Woman of Character Award. Named in honor of the retiring ANU Vice Chancellor and EFAC co-founder, the award recognizes a female scholar who embodies integrity, service and giving in every aspect of her life.

Sadia studied law at Africa Nazarene University (ANU), where she won six academic awards. She is currently working for Kenya's Department of Immigration, as well as trainer for the country's Independent Electoral & Boundaries Commission. Sadia is a mentor to EFAC scholars, served as an ANU dormitory assistant, and was active in Enactus, a worldwide organization of student, academic and business leaders. She is a graduate of Starehe Girls' School, and has been sponsored by Janet Crowder, an EFAC board member. (Sadia is pictured here with Prof. Leah Marangu and Nancy Van Sciver)


Esther Wagaki Mbugua was awarded the Founders' Transformational Leadership Award, recognizing an EFAC scholar who demonstrates leadership and resilience while serving as a role model for young people. The award is given in honor of Nancy and Rod Van Sciver, whose vision, courage and leadership founded EFAC and transformed it into today's successful organization.

Esther joined EFAC from an IDP (displaced persons) camp. Based purely on potential and promise, Esther was admitted into the EFAC program despite having the lowest entering grade in our program. She has consistently pushed herself to excel academically, eventually placing among the top of her fellow EFAC scholars. Despite starting high school as shy and timid, Esther now speaks and presents herself with confidence and motivates others to do so as well. Her continued thirst for knowledge has led her to pursue every opportunity to enhance her career opportunities. Esther studied Commerce at Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology, and has completed internships in business and accounting during every university break, including one with Kenya's state health insurance corporation. She is a graduate of Vanessa Grant Girls' School, and has been sponsored by Jo Deupree, an EFAC board member. (Esther is pictured here with Jo Deupree)



July 2017

Two EFAC Scholars Receive Scholarships to Yale Summer Program

Yale University’s Young Global Scholars program has offered two full scholarships to EFAC scholars Stacy Murugi ’17 and Fridah Senteyion ’18, both students at Vanessa Grant Girls’ School (VGGS), for their two-week summer program in New Haven, CT. The mission of the Yale Young Global Scholars program is to empower the next generation of leaders by building a global community and offering interdisciplinary programs that foster intellectual curiosity, deepen understanding and inspire creative action across all borders.

Stacy and Fridah arrive in July 2017

Stacy and Fridah arrive in July 2017

Stacy is a mentor at VGGS, a member of the drama club, and has participated in national languages and sciences contests. She ranks 1st in her Form 4 class and 2nd overall. Stacy lives with her mother, stepfather and younger siblings in Mbagathi, a suburb of Nairobi.  Her mother had to give up her produce stand due to health problems, and Stacy’s stepfather does not have steady work.  She has two younger siblings, one of whom is also an EFAC scholar at VGGS.  Determined to realize her dream of a medical career, Stacy has always been a dedicated and hard-working student.

Fridah is a class representative, the games captain, and plays volleyball at VGGS.  She works hard in school, placing in the top third of her class and excelling in history. She was also a top fundraiser for EFAC’s Power of One walk. Fridah’s parents are subsistence farmers with a large family to support. Her father did not encourage her education, instead planning to have her marry early in exchange for property.  Her mother sent Fridah to live with her grandmother, where she helped care for goats and was able to attend primary school.  Despite these challenges, Fridah thrived in school, placing first in her class and winning a national essay competition,  sponsored by Wildlife Clubs of Kenya, on caring for the environment.

Stacy and Fridah will enjoy a few extra weeks in the US, visiting several EFAC sponsors and board members before and after the Yale program. Their trip will be an adventure for both girls, including their first time on an airplane, an opportunity to meet fellow students from around the world, and the chance to experience American culture.