Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program
John Chol / South Sudan/Kenya

Class of 2016-2019

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Scholar: Johana Carmona Muñoz Scholar: Joseph Chonza

John was born in South Sudan, where he lived with his mom and two sisters until they and other family members fled to the Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya to escape the conflict in their home country. Growing up in Kakuma, John felt fortunate to live without war, but still faced many challenges living inside a camp which housed 200,000 refugees from multiple countries. After graduating from high school, John moved back into the camp and volunteered as a teacher for his former primary school, in addition to working with new refugees as an interpreter for the United Nations.

John discovered EARTH while researching universities on the internet. He was excited to find a place that combined leadership, agriculture, and community development. John’s goal is to return to South Sudan and help shape the country’s progression. “I’m doing this for my people, for South Sudan. I need to go back to my country and start something that will get us moving in the right direction. We are starting from scratch.”