Conor Bohan

Ashoka Fellow
Fellow Since 2014
Haitian Education and Leadership Program (HELP)


This profile was prepared when Conor Bohan was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2014.
The New Idea
Conor is fostering a new mindset of upward social mobility by creating mechanisms and entry points that enable formerly excluded young people to study and work with people from the elite, proving to themselves and society at large that if given the opportunity they are equally capable of achieving and leading. His program, the Haitian Education and Leadership Program (HELP), identifies the most promising youth in disadvantaged communities and enables them to access and excel in leadership positions across all sectors of society. In so doing, he is contributing to dismantling deep-seated class divisions and challenging a pervasive cultural assumption that education and positions of leadership are reserved for the elite.

This change in mindset is enabling Conor to work with leaders across sectors -- universities, companies, and the government -- who are generally from the elite, to create a supporting environment for a more inclusive society. Conor has partnered with universities to re-think and design new practices that will enable underprivileged youth to access and develop their potential through a different type of university education that focuses on an individual's growth as a leader and positive force in society. Conor is also working with the business community to invest in developing a new type of talent that takes no note of one's family background. More recently he has also started working with the government to create a new civil servant program.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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