• Lead. Serve. Create.

    Welcome to the Fellows' Blog

    Every other week from February through June meet us back here to find a new post by our 2018-2019 cohort of Ethiopian Diaspora Fellows.

  • Our Fellows

    Meki Shewangizaw

  • Our Fellows

    Rebekah Tsadik

  • Our Fellows

    Feven Abiy

  • Our Fellows

    Edom Wessenyeleh

  • Our Fellows

    Samrawit Tamyalew

Embracing the Unknown

By Bethlehem Mesfin

Road through the Unexpected


If you ask anyone who knows me, they’ll tell you I’m a person who loves to plan and have things in order. I thrive on the concept of predictability and typically rely on those around me to provide a small dosage of spontaneity in my life. Without preparation, I’ll go through a process of questions that build up in my head, negative thoughts, and finally finish up with what may look like, to many, as a mini-panic attack. The thing is, the idea of the unknown has always stressed me out, and yet since being accepted into the Ethiopian Diaspora Fellowship, this has been the one constant thing I’ve encountered.

Here’s what my journey has looked like so far…

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7 Habits of a Highly-Ethiopian Child

By Aster Mengesha Gubay

Mid sip of buna, I chuckled then froze. I couldn’t believe what was happening right before my very eyes. 5 girls huddled around around a round table, small remnants of injera left, and buna/shi in all their hands – the girls looked at me like I was crazy. They had no idea that in that very moment I had just realized something that would help us understand our parents more than ever before.



“I just realized something…”

“Okay… what?”

“We are a becoming our parents. We are literally our fathers and mothers…”

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Connecting the Dots

By Sergut Dejene

I am hopeful.

At the time of writing, I was sitting in the bar area of the Ramada Hotel, located in the popular Bole area of the city – the latest of many swanky new hotels in the ever-expanding capital of Addis Ababa. A lot has changed since I first visited Ethiopia 11 years ago – when dial-up internet was a luxury, beautiful palm trees were abundant, and most of Ethiopia’s roads were “koroconch,” (gravel-like, unpaved roads) that I strangely missed upon returning to the flat plains of the Midwest.

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Changing Perspectives

By Mariam Admasu

I am back in Ethiopia in less than a year. Last year I was in Ethiopia as a graduation gift from my parents. I was doing a lot of traveling, hanging out with family and spending money. This year, I am here for reasons far beyond that. I am working for a non-profit organization, and in the process, learning about myself, my culture, and life in Ethiopia – I have seen myself growing and becoming better person in all aspects. New year, new me.


We’re on our second month now and I’ve never been here longer than three months. In these two months I have found myself outside of my comfort zone. Prior to being a fellow, whenever I came to Ethiopia, I would stay with my family and be surrounded by family all the time. My cousins had cars so I

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