Liz Ngonzi MMH ’98 has found her purpose, using an advanced degree in hotel management to benefit a South African nonprofit.

“There’s a real connection between hospitality and philanthropy,” she says. “It’s all about taking care of people.”

Taking care of people comes naturally for Liz, who was born in Uganda and grew up in the United States. She has always taken to heart the strong message from her parents: connect with the African continent.

In October, Liz joined Afrika Tikkun, a 20-year-old South Africa-based organization that invests in the sustenance, education, and social development of children—19,000 in 2014 alone—from infancy to young adulthood, when they are ready for careers. As CEO of Afrika Tikkun USA, she is building the brand in America.

Liz is also an entrepreneur and teacher, staying in touch with many of the students she mentored as Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Cornell’s Pillsbury Institute from 2011-2013.