BRIDGEWATER — Sackie Nyanquoi could often be found mixing chemicals and studying chemistry inside the Dr. Edward W. Minnock Institute for Global Engagement.
So it’s fitting that the Global Learning Lab at Bridgewater State University was renamed this week as the Sackie Nyanquoi Lab.
Nyanquoi died at the age of 27 in October as a result of a cardiac issue when he suddenly collapsed in the gymnasium during an intramural soccer game.
“I think it’s more than appropriate to recognize Sackie’s contributions to our university and how he was able to make in impact on a worldly basis,” said Joseph Oravecz, vice president of Student Affairs. “This dedication is emblematic of how he assisted BSU to move forward with international student relations.”
Nyanquoi, who was from Liberia, came to the United States years ago for facial reconstructive surgery after a near-fatal acid attack.
He was the victim of an acid attack at his parents’ Monrovia residence on April 17, 2008. During an armed robbery, an assailant threw raw acid liquid on his face, causing severe disfigurement.
Nyanquoi was a senior at the college and was majoring in chemistry, with a concentration in biochemistry.
The lab, which Nyanquoi frequented during his time at Bridgewater State, was officially renamed during a ceremony on Monday.
“As a tribute to such a dedicated scholar and a dear friend to many at BSU and beyond, we wanted to create a space for the community to come together and remember him,” said Jennifer Currie, associate director of International Student and Scholar Services.
Several of Nyanquoi’s friends attended the naming ceremony.
“He was just always so nice to me; he was always so genuine,” said 19-year-old Dominique Durden.
“He was very friendly. Every time I saw him, he would say ‘Hi,’ and ask how I was doing,” said international student Jenniffer Rivas of the Dominican Republic.
Nyanquoi was known to always have a smile on his face – despite the early troubles he faced in life.
“He was such a kind person, always went out of his way to talk to others or just say hello,” Katelyn Scammon, who worked with Nyanquoi at the YMCA in North Attleboro, previously told The Enterprise. “To overcome everything he did and still have such a positive outlook in life, he was really an inspiration.”
Source: The Enterprise