Every January, about forty DeBoer Fellows come to Mandalay for the first Fellow Event, from villages and cities all around the country. They travel by planes, overnight buses, taxis and several-day motorbike treks. Their Fellowship class will gather again during May in the Inle Lake area, for the second phase of the program. At the end of the third Fellow Event in October, these Fellows receive certificates of graduation at a public reception in Yangon.
After graduation, DeBoer alumni remain involved with each other and the Fellowship, as part of a lifelong learning experience. These citizen leaders become known in their communities and throughout Myanmar for excellence, integrity, and service to others.
DeBoer instructors are senior experts in corporate, educational, and non-government organizations in Myanmar, Southeast Asia, and western countries. They are chosen because they exemplify excellence and integrity. They are experts in their fields, they are first-rate communicators, and they want to be part of a high-touch program that has a huge impact. They volunteer as instructors to help impressive DeBoer Fellows, who are at critical points in their careers.
The Advisory Council is a distinguished group of experts who vouch for the DeBoer Fellowship. These men and women are industry leaders in their positions, and their endorsement is based upon decades of experience in their fields. They recognize the Fellowship’s capacity to nurture and cultivate Fellows, enhancing their ability to help Myanmar flourish.
Many of Myanmar’s younger leaders wish to have experienced advisors who will help them grow in competence, integrity, and success. The DeBoer Fellowship recognizes that desire and matches Fellows with senior-level leaders for personal sessions of direction and advice during Fellow Events and throughout the year.
Typically, DeBoer mentors are high-level executives at prominent organizations in Myanmar, Southeast Asia, and beyond. Mentors provide real-life examples of career success, from Myanmar and throughout the global community.
Each year, the DeBoer Fellowship presents an award recognizing a citizen who has dedicated his or her life to the betterment of their community and nation.
In 2016, Dr. Myint Oo was recognized as the first Honorary DeBoer Fellow. Dr. Myint Oo, Director and Chief GP of Win Family Health Clinic and Executive of the General Practitioner’s Society of Myanmar, has been involved with the Fellowship since its inception as an instructor, advisor and lead mentor. He is a tireless public educator who is an advocate for public health and policy.
Past honorees include:
- Professor Dr. Aung Tun Thet, a distinguished professor and member of the President’s National Economic and Social Advisory Council
- U. Kyaw Thu, a Myanmar Academy Award winner and founder of Free Funeral Service Society
- Debbie Aung Din, Co-founder of Proximity Designs, an organization that creates innovative tools to increase the productivity and incomes of rural Myanmar households
Award recipients are given the opportunity to direct a grant to a Myanmar-based non-government or community-based organization of their choice.
The Fellowship is innovative and complex in its curriculum, activities, venues, mentoring, and alumni offerings. It is overseen by several staff members in Myanmar and the United States. DeBoer staff are committed to excellence, innovation, and providing a personalized, nurturing environment in which every Fellow will grow and thrive.