As a first-generation and American immigrant from Bali, Cameroon, “home” has always been difficult for Angum Check ’19 to define. Coming to Carolina gave her some insight.
“Being a first-generation American immigrant, I personally struggle with what ‘home’ means. Part of me realizes I’m going to have to create my own ‘home’ so in order to create my own ‘home’ I’m going to have to go back to Cameroon.”
And so she began her quest to travel 8,000 miles to her home continent.
An African, African American, and Diaspora Studies major and aSean Douglas Leadership FellowOpens in new window, Angum spends a lot of her time at the Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History. At her “first home on campus,” the Undergraduate International Studies Fellowship program provided the opportunity to go home.
“[The UISF program] is very much designed to prioritize students based on need, and that allowed me the opportunity to go abroad” Angum said. “I haven’t been back to the continent since I’ve left because of monetary reasons, and so having the opportunity to go back was very, very emotional.”
She spent her summer in Malawi, and the experience opened her eyes to new possibilities.
“The summer in Malawi program was very life changing. I’m seriously considering academia and eventually pursuing a Ph.D.,” she said.
Back on campus, she stays involved with the diversity and inclusion office as a Martin Luther King Jr. Scholar, and with Achieving Carolina Excellence as co-chair.
When asked about what she would like her legacy at Carolina to be, she named the Stone Center and its fellowships as programs she would like to support.
“I would like to leave my legacy as one of service and one of giving back to programs that gave me opportunities.”
Angum Check was able to study abroad because of the Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History’s Undergraduate International Studies Fellowship.