In this interview, Saah Charles N’Tow describes his roles as program director for the President’s Young Professional Program (PYPP) and John Snow Inc.’s (JSI) Scott Family Liberia Fellows Program. He talks about the process of designing a two-year fellowship program to bring young Liberians into key government ministries and agencies. He explains the creation of a selection criteria for fellows and the procedures that ensured the applicant-screening process remained transparent and fair. He discusses how the program held support sessions for applicants focused on resume writing and interview preparation. He addresses the program’s coordination practices with donors on budget support. He notes instances of resistance against the program from ministries and agencies and describes how the program responded to problems arising from the placement of fellows. He highlights the program’s administrative components that included mentoring, training, performance management, and program immersion. Finally, he describes the importance of sustainable funding procedures and talks about the likelihood of continued support for the program through future administrations
At the time of this interview, Saah Charles N’Tow was Liberia’s minister of youth and sports. He previously served as the program director of the President’s Young Professional Program (PYPP) and John Snow Inc.’s (JSI) Scott Family Liberia Fellows Program. He formerly served as a conflict sensitivity and training officer for the United Nations (UN) Liberia Peacebuilding Office. He obtained his bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the University of Liberia and his master’s degree in humanitarian assistance from Tufts University.