Befikadu Mekonnen of Ethiopia took individual guitar lessons this past year with John Wiesenthal, chair of Hochstein’s guitar department.
Mekonnen first came to the U.S. for diagnosis and treatment of an aggressive cancer in his right eye, and ended up studying at the Harley School in Rochester. He begins classes this week as a biomedical engineering major at the University of Rochester.
“Not many kids have survived a potentially deadly cancer, traveled thousands of miles for treatment … and actually used the experience to grow from,” says his doctor, Rick Hodes. “Bef has a really positive attitude … just rolls with the punches and keeps going.”
Read his inspirational story on the University of Rochester website: