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Africa's Young Fashion Leaders Fellowship

The Council for International African Fashion Education (CIAFE) is a non-profit organisation dedicated to improving the standards of Fashion Education in Africa to close the knowledge and skills gap, create opportunities for future talent and contribute to economic growth. Our aim is to also support the development of decolonising of the fashion curriculum within European and North American institutions.

‘Africa’s Young Fashion Leaders Fellowship’ is an annual work experience and learning opportunity which offers emerging talent the opportunity to learn, build and contribute to the growth of an organisation.

For the past eight months, CIAFE has surveyed members from the international fashion community about essential skills in 2022. We have also interviewed company execs and founders on the continent and internationally to find out areas where they have struggled to hire. Through data collection from our survey and interviews, CIAFE has identified the following six core skill gaps: project management, social sustainability (outreach and community building), research and development, event coordination and data analytics. The advantage of these roles is they can all be carried out remotely.

The fellowship is split into 6 pathways

​This initiative brings in a new generation of diverse African talent and enriches the fashion industry by bringing in fresh diverse skills, viewpoints and ideas. The fellowship is a fully funded full-time opportunity for young talent on the continent to obtain professional experience and ongoing mentoring while learning about the global fashion industry throughout the world.

  • Digital and Content Marketing (2 positions available)

  • Research and Development (2 positions available)

  • Project Management (2 positions available)

  • Social Sustainability: Outreach and Community (2 positions available)

  • Events Coordinating (2 positions available)

  • Data Analytics (2 positions available)

This fellowship is suitable for:

  • A recent graduate who is keen to take a year out to learn and further develop

  • Someone who may consider a masters degree but requires more experience

  • Someone who is experienced but has not done a degree and does not have the financial means to do so

  • Someone who is interested in a career change in the industry

Benefits of the Programme

In the year-long fellowship, you will develop hard and soft skills such as problem solving, critical thinking, management, social sustainability, time management, presentation skills, communications, crisis management, content creation, market research and data collection. Alongside learning you will also be working on hands-on projects to showcase your skills to an international fashion network. CIAFE aims to allow students to apply and recreate learned skills and education to strengthen employment capabilities.

  • Enrol on a year long programme with over 12 modules tailored to your pathway

  • Receive official CIAFE CPD recognised accreditation courses 

  • Customised training and development to based on your position

  • Access to CIAFE’s private education library

  • A recommendation letter from CIAFE’s executive director

  • Access to platforms such as Business of Fashion, Future Learn, EDx and Coursera

  • Receive one of the following career certifications:

    • Google’s Project Management Certificate 

    • Google’s Data Analyst Certificate 

    • Google Analytics Certification

    • Google Ads Certification

  • Priority registration and access to:

    • Coding programme with Life is Tech

    • Language class (French and Portuguese)

    • Fully funded place on the Conde Nast College x CIAFE x AFF accredited course

  • Mentoring from senior executives

  • Work with members from international organisations

  • Develop a portfolio with all the projects you have worked on

  • Build a personal development package (CV, cover letter, LinkedIn profile and personal website)

Disclaimer: Please note, this fellowship is to learn and acquire relevant skills, this is not official CIAFE employment. This is a year-long programme and is not eligible for those working full-time.You will be required to attend sessions and work on projects five days a week. You must own a laptop or PC (tablet is not acceptable) and access to reliable internet connection to participate in the programme. At the end of the year successful candidates will be considered for full-time employment.


What are the requirements for joining?

Over 18, Valid iD, laptop, access to strong and reliable wifi, and basic computer literacy skills.


Is there a fee involved, do you have to pay to join the programme?

No, it is fully funded.

What qualities are you looking for in a potential trainee?

We’re looking for trainees that are committed and want to be the next leaders in fashion. Individuals who are resourceful, self-motivated and purpose-driven.

What do I need for the application and how long will the process take?

You need to have a CV, send a video of yourself and fill out questions regarding your previous experience and background questions. The process takes roughly 2 weeks from application to notification of whether you are accepted or not. 

How many trainees will you accept into the program and when does it start?

12 trainees. This will commence April 2022.

Do you need a university degree to be a part of this?


Can you work full time and do this?

No you must commit to the fellowship full-time.

Can you work part-time and do this?

Yes, however you would need to create a schedule out of the fellowship programme.

How much time is required for the programme?

5 days a week and 7 hours each day from 9am - 5pm GMT

Do you care about the quality of the video or resume?

Yes, please showcase your best work and ensure your CV is in the proper format.

Ok this sounds great! I want to apply, how do I do it?

Click here to apply

When do applications close?

March 28th, 12pm GMT

Must I attend every session?

Yes, we have an attendance target of 96% if you meet less than this you will not be eligible for completing the fellowship

Will I get paid to do this?

No as it is a fully funded programme

What happens after we complete the programme?

You will be prepared for an entry-level role in the fashion industry or ready to start your own business.