Young Leader Blog
Ahmed El Meleegy
Joined ALA September 2009
Having had the opportunity to study in a fairly decent educational system, the academic struggles weren’t a big deal. However, that same educational system didn’t offer many, if any, leadership opportunities. I struggled to form a team to work on an activity called iEARN when I was 12. When I finally formed the team, we went on to start working and implementing projects in our school. I found it very hard to lead a team of 30 people, and I eventually failed. Two years after that, I had the chance to lead a much bigger team of enthusiastic intellectuals. We worked on the IT infrastructure of iEARN across Egypt. Through iEARN, I came to know a lady who would nominate me to attend the prestigious ALA. She had a lot of hope that I could make it to this “amazing place”, as she described it.
At ALA, I tried to experience everything I thought I was passionate about. My passion for business and technology drove me to start 4D, a project that aims to develop low-cost laptops for African high school and college students. It is a very small team, only 3 people, and we have tried to keep it small until the project officially launches and we can then attract more people. Further, I have pursued my love for tennis, acting as the tennis team captain for a while before realizing that leadership sometimes disconnects you from what you really love to do. So, I passed the leadership to another student so I could just focus on tennis itself.
I have been privileged to have met amazing people during my time at ALA. I was lucky enough to meet Larry Weber, the renowned social media and public relations expert, and his family. I presented to them my idea and they have been supporting me in numerous ways since then. I also met with several technology experts who were instrumental in solidifying my belief that my combination of business and technology is the right one for me.
In 10 years, I hope I will have earned an MBA from a prestigious institution. I hope I will have continued working on 4D, the laptop project, and that it takes a great position in Africa. I can see myself living in Africa, in my country Egypt, and working to bring great technology to Africa, and introduce great technology coming out of Africa.