With its view of creating responsible, high-impact entrepreneurs, the Foundation has established a pipeline that starts at school level and ends at the point when high-impact businesses are born.
The Foundation believes that education is an important part of an entrepreneur’s journey and as such they support future entrepreneurs’ education by funding it and cultivating an entrepreneurship culture in the one hundred or so schools they partner with. Learners with the potential of becoming high-impact entrepreneurs apply for and receive the Scholarship that entail the funding of their high school tuition as well as a personal development and entrepreneurial mindset development programme that lay the groundwork for any future entrepreneurial action.
Every year the graduating cohort of Allan Gray Scholars are honoured for their achievements throughout school and, more importantly, for gaining access to higher education institutions – something that might not have been possible without the initial access to a high-quality education at the Foundation’s chosen partner schools. The past year’s cohort of 17 Scholars were celebrated when they walked across the stage at their graduation ceremony held on 15 March 2014.
An even greater achievement for graduating Scholars is qualifying for the Allan Gray Fellowship that, besides the funding of their university tuition, includes a personal development and entrepreneurial mindset development programme that builds on what they learnt as Scholars.
Other Grade 12 learners and first-year university students may also apply for the opportunity to become Candidate Allan Gray Fellows. Once Candidate Fellows complete their degrees and the concurrent Fellowship Programme they graduate to become Allan Gray Fellows. A graduation ceremony is followed by an induction into the Association of Allan Gray Fellows, which represents their life-long commitment to and association with the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation and their vision. The Association not only serves to support the further development of entrepreneurial thinking, it also provides access to venture capital finding through E2 and the opportunity to plough back any additional entrepreneurial experience and resources into the Foundation and the Fellowship.
The Fellows graduating in 2013 represent the Allan Gray Orbis Foundation’s sixth cohort of graduates. These 41 Fellows were duly celebrated for their sacrifices and effort over the last four years at the Fellowship Graduation ceremony held on 1 March 2014. They bring the total number of Fellows in the Association to 192, a figure that makes the Foundation very proud and brings it one step further in achieving its vision of an emerging generation of high-impact, responsible entrepreneurs who will be at the forefront of the continuing economic and social transformation of Southern Africa.