NGOAN VAN HOANG
Hoang Van Ngoan was born in North
Vietnam, and is part of the Black Thai Dam tribe. He fled to Laos in 1954
as a refugee. He became a waiter in Vientiane, Laos, and learned English
in his spare time. He served as Dr. Tom Dooley,
Earl Rhine, and Dwight Davis's
English-Laotian interpreter while Dooley worked in Muong Sing, Laos. He
even took some American correspondence courses while working for Dooley.
He always wanted to learn more.
Hoang came to America in December 1959, to be on the television show "This is Your Life" as the surprise guest for Dooley. After the show, he stayed in America with Mr. and Mrs. Robert Northshield and their family in New York. Dooley provided financial assistance for Hoang's study in America. Hoang attended Scarborough High School and was very active in soccer and tennis, and he also worked for the school newspaper. Hoang entered high school at the eleventh grade level, and he struggled with the studies and had to work hard to learn. He worked diligently at his studies and in sports. In March 1960, the headmaster sent Mr. Northshield and Dooley an update on Hoang's progress. Dooley responded to the headmaster, thanking him for his attentiveness and patience with Hoang. Hoang correspondended with Earl Rhine after he came to America.
After high school, Hoang attended
Rockford College for a year and a half, then attended the Alexian Brothers
School of Nursing, graduating on July 28, 1968. He next went on to Franklin
College, Franklin, Indiana, for two years and graduated with a degree
in biology. He attended Tulane University and earned a Master's of Public
Health. After graduation, he began teaching at Indiana University in the
School of Nursing. He still teaches at the university.
His goal was to return to Laos and join Dooley's hospitals there. However, he was never able to do so because of the wars and political termoil. However, he has returned to Vietnam. In 1996, Hoang returned to Vietnam to visit his father after 46 years. In 1999, he visited Vietnam again and worked with people at Hue University trying to form a collaboration with Indiana University. In the fall of 2001, he took a sabbatical, and went back to Hue University where he taught nursing classes and English classes to students there. He also worked with the Vietnam Nursing Association to help shape future programs.