Balanding is a Mastercard Foundation Scholar and an undergraduate student in the School of Life Sciences, and Barrett, The Honors College at Arizona State University studying Biological Sciences. Born and raised in The Gambia, West Africa, he is interested in hunger and malnutrition eradication especially in developing countries, and understanding how hunger and malnutrition make individuals in these communities more vulnerable to infectious diseases.
He is the founder of Rural Impact, a non-profit organization that empowers smallholder farmers in rural communities in his native country to increase food production and enable them combat hunger and food insecurity. Balanding is an undergraduate researcher in the Cease Lab where he conducts research with Dr. Cease on locusts which are a major crop pest in many countries of the world. His vision is to see a world in which people have access to food regardless of their income levels or where they live.