Welcome to a great week!

RISE NETWORKS Youth of the Week is Misan Rewane, a Change agent and social entrepreneur.

“It’s not really work when you’re doing something that is serving a greater purpose.” – Nicole Robertson.

This quote best describes Misan Rewane, founder of West Africa Vocational Education and our Youth of the Week.

Misan was born in Lagos, Nigeria where she attended her primary and secondary school after which she moved to the UK to do her A Levels, and then afterwards to US to study Economics,where she obtained a degree from Stanford University. After her graduation, she worked with the Monitor Group in management consulting and due to her passion for entrepreneurship, she supported aspiring Ivorian entrepreneurs through TechnoServe’s Business Plan Competition and developed a scholarship administration model as a consultant with the Center for Public Policy Alternatives in Nigeria.

Misan’s outstanding academic performance earned her an MBA scholarship at Harvard Business School with sevenUp, while there, she partnered with fellow West Africans who were passionate about tackling youth unemployment, and this birthed the launch of WAVE in 2013.

WAVE is a vocational training platform designed to empower and equip millions of disadvantaged West African youth with employability skills and alter their mindsets with the necessary skills needed to take advantage of the employment opportunities and enhance their social mobility. WAVE tackles the large unemployment gap among Youth by identifying determined and underserved West African youth, and empowering them with trainings and mentorship on crucial employability skills, connecting them to available job opportunities. Since its launch, WAVE has matched over 1,000 unemployed youth directly to entry-level jobs with over 200 businesses and has trained thousands more across various programs and partnerships.

WAVE provides teeming youth with the necessary leadership competence by leveraging on training and volunteer opportunities that allows young people to be co-learners and active contributors to the development of their community. This is how she started the business, West Africa Vocational Education (WAVE). With seed funding awarded by Harvard Business School’s New Venture Competition, she and her team launched a pilot training programme in August of 2013 where the major assumptions behind the business model – our value proposition (accessibility, affordability, quality, relevance and convenience) and willingness- to-pay among the unemployed and their potential employers after training, was tested.

Misan is our Youth of the week, because she inspires young people to see themselves as giants in today’s world and discover the hidden potentials in themselves at a very tender age, applying their creative and innovative ideas to create solutions for real world problems. By empowering these youth, WAVE will boost and trigger a flash that will ignite a socio-cultural mindset of professional excellence and growth that catalyzes Africa’s economic development.

Follow her on twitter – @misanrewane