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26 July 2019

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Dr Chuor de Garang Alier crowned winner of 2019 Rare Rising Star Awards

Dr Chuor de Garang Alier has the warmest congratulations of all at St Hugh’s on being named as the winner of the Rare Rising Star awards, which celebrate the UK’s top 10 African and Caribbean students.

Dr de Garang Alier is a graduate student at St Hugh’s, and won the award for his work on challenging the stigma around female infertility.

In an interview Chuor explained that his interest in assisted conception and embryology “was a result of my interactions with couples struggling to have a child because of infertility. They often had to go away broken-hearted that I could not help them more, and I grew frustrated by my lack of specialist skills in this area.”

“I have, with deep sense of sadness, seen infertility bringing strain in marriages. This often becomes a gender equity issue, escalating into emotional and physical abuse of women.

“I strongly object to stigmatisation, and the notion that, somehow, a man or a woman’s social standing is dependent on their ability to bear children.”

Chuor completed his schooling while living in refugee camps in Sudan and Uganda, and was eventually rewarded with a scholarship from the Republic of South Sudan’s Ministry of Health.

He said: “I hope South Sudanese school children currently in internally displaced people’s camps in my country, and refugee camps in the neighbouring countries, find my story an inspiration to them and a sign that these difficult days too shall come to pass — like all the days before them during my time in similar situations.”

Read the full interview here.

Photo credit: Leo Hoang.

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