Saudi CEO funds Rhodes grant

The Rhodes Trust selects creative young leaders with a commitment to serving others.
Updated 15 April 2018
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Saudi CEO funds Rhodes grant

A new Rhodes scholarship has been announced in partnership with Saudi entrepreneur Mohammed Al-Agil and the Kingdom’s Ministry of Education.

Saudi students aged 19-25 will be eligible for the annual scholarship when applications open later this year.

The Rhodes Trust, based in Oxford, is hoping for a diverse set of applicants from around the Kingdom. Eligibility criteria will be published at www.rhodeshouse.ox.ac.uk/apply.

Al-Agil, co-founder of Jarir Bookstores and chairman of Jarir Marketing Co., is funding the annual Rhodes scholarship for Saudi Arabia.

The Rhodes Trust, the international scholarship program established at Oxford University in 1903, selects creative young leaders with a commitment to serving others. 

Charles Conn, CEO of the Rhodes Trust, said: “I am extremely pleased to announce another scholarship to add to the diverse annual cohort of courageous young leaders. Our mission will be to find those exceptional Saudi students a platform to explore their full potential as they prepare to make an impact on the world.

“The introduction of this scholarship comes at a time when the Kingdom is at the forefront of major economic and social transformations in line with Vision 2030. I look forward to welcoming our new scholar to Rhodes House in October 2019, and witnessing our community becoming increasingly more diverse.”

Al-Agil said: “I have benefited enormously from my education and the opportunities I have received from my country, and I believe that endowing a Rhodes scholarship to Saudi postgraduate students is a small gesture to pay back my fellow citizens.”

Jasir Alherbish, the Saudi Ministry of Education’s deputy for scholarships affairs, said: “We are excited about our collaboration with the Rhodes Trust and so keen about opening new horizons for our bright youngsters. It is yet one more excellent venue to be added to the Saudi distinguished scholarships. Thanks to Mohammed Al-Agil and the Rhodes Trust, as well as our team at the ministry, for making it happen.”


360-degree mentoring to boost Saudi social enterprise sector

Updated 23 May 2019
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360-degree mentoring to boost Saudi social enterprise sector

The King Khalid Foundation (KKF) and Mowgli Mentoring have collaborated to strengthen the growing social enterprise sector in the Kingdom through the provision of 360-degree mentoring, which will support the personal and professional development of social entrepreneurs. The EMCC-accredited mentoring organization is working to built the capacity of Saudi mentors by instilling best mentoring practices and sharing experiences from its 10-year work around the world.

Globally, the concept of social entrepreneurship is increasingly gaining momentum and positive attention as it combines commerce with social good, allowing entrepreneurs to go beyond profit to positively impact communities and societies. Supporting these entrepreneurs, therefore, is in line with the KKF’s vision, which is to have a Saudi society with equal opportunities.

The KKF’s collaboration with Mowgli resulted in the creation of the Athar (Impact) Mentoring Program.

This program aims to build and increase the capacity of Saudi mentors, and equip them with the necessary tools to be able to provide mentorship, support and guidance to social entrepreneurs in the Kingdom. Matching mentors with social entrepreneurs and managing their mentorship relationships is a key benefit of the program.

To commence the mentoring program, Mowgli recently delivered a four-day workshop in the KKF premises in Riyadh. Fourteen professionals and business leaders received training to be 360-degree mentors before being matched with 14 social entrepreneurs. Both groups were provided with the guidelines to build solid foundations for their 1-2-1 mentoring relationships. In addition, the matched pairs will be supported over a duration of six months, during which structured on-going support will be provided to ensure that trust-based and impactful mentoring relationships are developed.

Mowgli Mentoring’s CEO Kathleen Bury said: “We see this program supporting the three themes on which the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 was built upon: Developing a vibrant society, a thriving economy and an ambitious nation. By supporting social entrepreneurs, we’re working toward achieving the Kingdom’s economic aspirations of increasing SME GDP contribution by 20–30 percent by 2030. We are, therefore, excited to be back in Saudi Arabia and are honored to be working with the King Khalid Foundation in delivering this program, and building Saudi Arabia’s mentoring capacity to sustainably support change-makers and their surrounding ecosystems for years to come.”

The key to developing entrepreneurship and fostering economic development lies in having a well-balanced ecosystem with equal investment in four key pillars: Environment (schooling, parenting), finance (working capital, debt and equity financing), infrastructure (incubators, accelerators, utilities and sound legal frameworks) and human capital development (mentoring, skills and knowledge development). Mowgli supports the latter and has successfully delivered more than 110 mentoring programs across the Middle East, North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.