Tala Nchamukong cares about his community.
So much so that the University of Michigan-Dearborn junior participates in a bevy of volunteer activities throughout the year.
That passion for community service resonates among his classmates and earned him a spot on this year’s list of “Difference Makers.”
“The ability to perform a reflective observation on my surrounding community and make the various contributions essential to impacting positive social change, be it through community service, volunteerism, involvement, leadership, inclusion or just being an advocate for positive change, is what makes me a difference maker,” he said.
“My desire to better the community that I am a part of gives me the motivation to make a difference. My desire for learning through experience gives me the satisfaction for making a difference.”
Near the top of Nchamukong’s accomplishments is helping launch UM-Dearborn’s Student Food Pantry, which is intended to provide temporary food assistance to students in need.
“Having the opportunity to make a difference in such a unique, but important way was nothing short of a miracle to me,” he said. “I understood the fact that students who may be going through family issues, or short on income, do not get all the assistance they need in order to perform well at school. This is where the Student Food Pantry comes in.”
The pantry opened in January, and the campus community understands that its success, in part, lies in Nchamukong’s hard work.
“He was involved in everything from conducting best-practices research, arranging the stocking of shelves with products and creating the system by which our hungry students are now served with dignity and respect,” said Tracy Hall, director of community engagement. “It is clear that he is extremely passionate about this work and cares deeply about our doing it right.”
In March, Nchamukong also found time in his busy schedule to lead a group of 11 students on a volunteer mission in Illinois, as part of Alternative Spring Break.
Michigan Campus Compact is well aware of Nchamukong’s volunteer efforts, as they nominated him for its Outstanding Student Service Award.