ALA alumnus Nchang Tchofor ’18 has been recognized as a Future Nobel Laureate Scholar by The Nobel Prize Museum and EF Education First. This award is given to exceptional young individuals who demonstrate the potential to make groundbreaking contributions to their respective fields.
Nchang is a junior at St. Olaf College studying quantitative economics. A survivor of sickle cell anemia, a degenerative disease that deprives the blood of oxygen, Nchang is the founder and CEO of the nonprofit Sickle Cell International Foundation, which operates in Cameroon and South Africa, providing broad support for sickle cell patients and their families. The foundation has attracted support from organizations such as Turkish Airlines and ALforHealth, and created partnerships with local hospitals in Cameroon to provide nutritional support, tests, hospitalizations, and medications free of charge to more than 125 families. The foundation also builds community among patients and family members, and gathers extensive data to support ongoing research and improve the operations of the foundation.
Reflecting on how his ALA journey played a role in his success, Nchang shared, “What made ALA a great place to learn was that it is a community of great critics and feedback providers. We were still learning how to give/receive feedback, but there was always someone prior to ALA who had some related experience in your intended endeavor, and it made a huge difference. In addition, everyone at ALA is your cheerleader. From assembly performances to awards to sports, we all rooted for each other, and it encouraged us to find new identities in ourselves, take up new challenges, and hone new skills.”
Nchang’s selection as a Future Nobel Laureate Scholar is a testament to his dedication to scientific excellence and his commitment to making a positive impact on the world. Nchang’s mission is to advance healthcare through gene editing and accessible curative therapies.
Nchang will travel to Sweden in December to participate in a series of sessions at the 2023 Nobel Week Dialogue, an event that brings together the world’s leading scientists, policymakers, and intellectuals to explore global scientific issues.