“The Alfa Fellowship Program will help to educate a new generation of American thinkers on the realities of the New Russia. We think it can only be a good think for Russia-USA relations to have more exposure and more understanding of our country”, says Mikhail Fridman, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Alfa-Bank at the meeting with a group of Alfa Fellows on Tuesday April 3d.
This is a 4th group of young professionals from the United States who arrived to Moscow for 10 months language training, professional work experience and traveling to regions. The Alfa Fellowship Program was launched in 2004 and is sponsored by Alfa-Bank. The first class of 7 fellows was selected from 88 candidates. In February 2006 the 4th group of 10 participants arrived to Russia in June 2006 was selected from 267 applicants. Each of new Alfa fellows graduated from the best universities in the USA like Harvard, Wharton, Yale, John Hopkins and Stanford and many come from already-established professional positions.
The program is governed by an impressive Advisory Board of prominent Russian and American business leaders, officials, intellectual and media experts and chaired by Alfa-Bank President Peter Aven. Among them K. Kosachev, Chairman of the International Committee of State Duma, E. Yasin, Rector of the Higher School of Economics and Ambassador Fred Bush from Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.
Thanks to excellent cooperation of Microsoft Moscow Office, OPORA, TNK-BP, Boston Consulting Group, Baker Botts, The Expert magazine, Radio station Echo of Moscow, Carnegie Moscow Center and regional administrations who have all agreed to accept Fellows for work assignment, the first three groups of Alfa Fellows gained great professional experience.
The first Alfa Fellows returned to the USA and now use their knowledge to foster greater ties between America and Russia, working as analysts in key public and private sector positions. The selection of next fifth group of 10 fellows to arrive in Moscow in June 2007 took place in New York on February 2007.