Laura Jepkorir Ndoigo is a student at Ohio University studying Mechanical Engineering.This is where she learnt about University Innovation Fellows. Laura was born and raised in Kenya before moving to the US for college. Prior to moving to the US, she was awarded the Russ Legacy Cutler scholar award from Ohio University's premier merit scholarship program to study Mechanical Engineering at the Russ College of Engineering and Technology, Ohio University. Her interest is in bio-mechanics and biotechnology with a growing interest in reproductive health for women. Moreover, she is also constantly thinking about Afro-futurism and how technology can be improved and integrated in African economies.
Laura is also passionate about STEM education especially for girls. She ran a STEM mentorship program for Kenyan girls in high school via the Vanessa Trust Grant in the summer of 2019. She enjoyed mentoring and connecting young girls to mentors. That experience was eye opening for her and she looks forward to hopefully doing that on a larger scale in the future.
In addition to being a mentor, she is a mentee at Ohio University's Women's Center mentorship program. This is a program that she enjoys a lot because it offers amazing growth and networking opportunities. Prior to this, she graduated from ALAANA+ leadership training program from the Women's Center in May 2020 which is a leadership training program for multicultural women.
Laura served in Ohio University's Undergraduate Student Senate as International Affairs Senator for one year. As an international student, she noticed areas that international students should be better represented and supported in the university. The most important to her is mental health in regards to social adjustment. She hopes to continue with student senate in the coming years.
In 2015, she was awarded the President's Gold Award from His Excellency Uhuru Kenyatta, the President of Kenya.The President's Award also known as the Duke of Edinburgh Award program is a youth leadership and education training program for commonwealth countries. She earned the Bronze and Silver awards before finally getting the Gold award.
One of her favorite things to do apart from listening to afropop and awkwardly dancing around while at it is writing and reading. She has an exponentially growing collection of African literature which she keeps constantly getting with hopes on one day reading them all. Her favorite author is Chimamanda Adichie Ngozi and her favorite book is Americanah by Chimamanda as well mostly because she finds the protagonist in the book strikingly similar to her. Laura's favorite band is Sauti Sol, a Kenyan band she listens to at least twice a day.
To top it all off, Laura is multilingual; she speaks Swahili, English and Kalenjin. Swahili is a lingua fraca spoken widely in East and Central Africa with a growing popularity in the continent of Africa. Kalenjin is a language spoken by the Kalenjin people, a nilotic community where she is from.
Russ Legacy Cutler Scholar- Manasseh Cutler Scholars Program
Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards- The President's Award- Kenya