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Linking Young Minds Together
     Volume 2 Issue 139 | October 11 , 2009|


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BYLC: Empowering Youth
to Lead Social Change

Ivdad Ahmed Khan Mojlish

AN ambitious theme, a breakthrough idea and a challenging approach to train the future generation of Bangladesh is what best describes the Bangladesh Youth Leadership Center, more popularly known as BYLC. Originally developed at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School, BYLC has completed the first two month-long leadership programmes with much success. And now, it is back again with yet anothber promising season on the cards.

Bangladesh Youth Leadership Center (BYLC) is a registered non-profit organization in Bangladesh that focuses on building compassionate and competent leaders. BYLC's first month-long leadership programme, Building Bridges through Leadership Training, won the 2008 Davis Peace Prize in the US, and was implemented in Chittagong by Ejaj Ahmad, the President, and Shammi Shawkat Quddus, an undergraduate student at MIT.

BYLC is primarily a leadership center, not a social service club, whose strength lies in its innovative leadership curriculum. The motto of BYLC is to create catalysts of change by instilling the leadership qualities that lie within the youth themselves. The three most important components of the program are: Building Bridges, Leadership Training and Community Service.

Propelled by the overwhelming success of its first two programs, BYLC intends to raise the number of intakes this time round. 42 bright and promising candidates from diverse backgrounds - English medium, Bengali medium and Madrassas, will be handpicked after a rigorous set of assessments to come under one umbrella to learn and exercise the real meaning of leadership. This goes on to show BYLC's core belief in equality. It strongly believes that the future of the nation can only be changed by mobilizing people from different backgrounds to work in unison and develop in a community spirit.

At the end of the month long program, the participants will come out with a new set of leadership skills, active community participation and most importantly, a fresh perspective on your life. The leadership sessions will be taught by Mr. Ejaj Ahmad, the President of the organization, who will be aptly backed by facilitators from the leading institutions in the country such as IBA, BUET and other private and public universities.

BYLC is looking for students who have completed Class 10, 11 and 12. Moreover, this time the requirements have been extended to the first year varsity students of Dhaka as well. The program will take place from 05 December 2009 to 09 January 2010. Selected participants will be required to attend the after school program six days a week for the entire duration of the program.

This season, British High Commission sponsors the entire programme. The selected applicants will receive full scholarship and graduate with a BYLC Certificate that will change their lives in more ways than one. After the classroom teachings and student interactions, the students are asked to do community service. Last season's participants have been involved in developing creative, valuable solutions for the slum dwellers of Mirpur. Ranging from propagating basic hygienic campaigns to developing proper water sanitations system has all been innovative and practicable. It is not possible to understand the extent of fun that is embedded in the whole process unless you are there in person!

So, what are you waiting for? Go get your admission form now! Please visit www.bylc.org for more details. Application deadline is on 5th of November 2009.

(Ivdad Ahmed Khan Mojlish, a recent IBA graduate, is the Project Manager of BYLC)

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