Yale Sophomore Named a Goldman Sachs Leader

Yale University sophomore Michelle Nadika de Saram was named today as one of only 20 undergraduates from across the United States and Canada honored as Goldman Sachs Global Leaders.

The 20 students are among 100 outstanding second-year university students from 17 countries who will be recognized in similar ceremonies around the world this spring who were selected on the basis of their outstanding academic abilities and leadership achievements.

De Saram, of Nugedoga, Sri Lanka, is a double major in history and political science, a reporter for the Yale Daily News, a founding member of the College Council for CARE at Yale and is working to found a Rotary Club at Yale. She was named Summit Valedictorian of the Presidential Classroom Future World Leaders Summit and has interned at the Center for Policy Alternatives and the National Peace Council of Sri Lanka.

“The Global Leaders Program exemplifies the Foundation’s mission to support educational innovation and leadership development,” said Stephanie Bell-Rose, president of the Goldman Sachs Foundation. “In light of the current state of the world, we recognize that leadership skills and global awareness are absolutely critical components of the educational process. We hope that the experience as a Goldman Sachs Global Leader will encourage these students to assume leadership roles that transcend cultural boundaries, and that the connections they make with other each other will grow over the years.”

The Goldman Sachs Foundation, along with its partner organization, the Institute of International Education, created the Global Leaders Program to identify and reward the academic excellence and leadership potential of 100 of the most accomplished second-year students to foster their leadership skills and prepare them for distinctive service to society and their future professions. The program is open to students at participating colleges and universities in 17 countries, and honors the achievements of outstanding young people whose courses of study cover a broad range of interests, including Africana studies, electrical engineering, international economics, and Middle East & Asian Languages and Cultures.

In its first two years, the Global Leaders Program has produced several truly outstanding student leaders. In the U.S. alone, six of the Global Leaders selected in the program’s first two years have received Truman, Marshall, Gates, or Rhodes Scholarships. According to a previous Global Leader, the Goldman Sachs Global Leaders Program “has opened my mind to incredible opportunities; it has instilled in me the self-confidence that I can do almost anything, anytime, anywhere if I am truly committed to it.”

Along with the distinction of being selected as “Goldman Sachs Global Leaders,” the 100 students worldwide will each receive $3,000 and will be honored in award ceremonies at which renowned leaders in the public, civic, and private sector will discuss current leadership challenges.

Through interviews with a distinguished panel of leaders from business, government and the nonprofit sector, 10 of the 20 students from U.S. and Canadian universities will be selected to participate in the Goldman Sachs Global Leadership Institute in July 2003 in New York City, along with 40 other students selected internationally this spring.

The Goldman Sachs Foundation, a global philanthropic organization funded by the Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., strives to promote excellence and innovation in education and to improve the academic performance and lifelong productivity of young people worldwide. Funded in 1999, the Foundation has awarded grants in excess of $40 million since its inception, providing opportunities for young people in more than 20 countries.

The Institute of International Education (IIE) is the world leader in the international exchange of people and ideas. IIE designs and implements over 200 programs of study and training for students, educators, young professionals and trainees from all sectors with funding from government and private sources. These programs include the Fulbright Student and Scholar programs and the Humphrey Fellowships, as well as corporate training and scholarship programs. For information about IIE, please visit their website at www.iie.org .

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