As a child in Cameroon, in west Central Africa, Raymond “Bamvi” Fohtung watched his father, a family physician, care for neighbors and others in his community. Inspired, he decided that he, too, would become a doctor one day. At Commencement 2014, that day will arrive.
(top-left) Fohtung poses with his brother, Maxwell Tanyi Fohtung, at their childhood home in Bamenda, Cameroon.
(bottom-left) Fohtung stands with his father, Dr. Victor Baukad, in Bamenda.
(right) Fohtung (right) with his brother, Maxwell – a medical student at Indiana University – after receiving his white coat in his first year as a medical student.
Fohtung is about to receive a medical degree and will begin residency training in internal medicine at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. During his time as a medical student, Fohtung always kept the greater needs of his community in mind.
In his first year, he immersed himself in the study of health disparities and community-based solutions to resolve them. He went on to work with schoolchildren in St. Louis, helping them make healthy choices and encouraging their interest in science, and teaching high school students about HIV prevention, among other life lessons. He spent countless hours mentoring young students and participating in health fairs.
Throughout his four years at the School of Medicine, Fohtung worked with Will Ross, MD, MPH, associate professor of medicine and associate dean for diversity. Among their collaborations was a research project that explored how improved knowledge about chronic illnesses can lead to better health outcomes in a community.
For this and his other work, Fohtung was awarded the prestigious Mound City Medical Forum Scholarship for academic excellence and extensive community engagement.
“Bamvi is a tireless advocate for the medically underserved,” Ross said, “and — through his broad worldview, compassion, work ethic and intellect — will make remarkable achievements in the field of medicine.”