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About The International Social Impact Institute (ISII) at Hunter College


These are exceptionally difficult times for the social sector. The COVID-19 Pandemic has devastated entire economies, and funding for social welfare organizations has become scarce just as the need has grown for the services that they provide.  But while the sector, and the communities that it serves, face tremendous challenges, the events of recent months have also created an environment ripe for innovation. The current challenges highlight the need for nimble, focused, creative and well-networked change makers to help guide the sector and the larger society forward.


The newly launched International Social Impact Institute at Hunter College (ISII) seeks to facilitate interactions among such change makers and to assist in training more of them. It further seeks to enhance the access of nonprofit organizations and social enterprises to the kinds of resources, knowledge and networks that will enable them to rebound from the setbacks they have recently experienced. The Institute also aims to inspire, connect, activate and transform students and professionals who are interested in social sector careers in New York City and beyond.


In support of those goals, ISII will offer courses, forums, training and consulting services designed to:

1.       Support the development of a pipeline of future leaders for the social sector;

2.       Foster the development of social sector employees; and

3.       Promote connections among nonprofits, social enterprises, foundations, corporate social responsibility offices, impact investors, and academic and sector-based experts.


The Institute's three inaugural courses (August 2020) are geared toward pre-college and college students seeking an introduction to the kinds of career opportunities that can be found in the social sector. Shortly thereafter, in the fall of 2020, the Institute will hold a day-long International Social Impact conference addressing topics such as Equity and Inclusion, New Revenue Models / Collaborations, and how to leverage Digital Innovation to advance the social sector post-Pandemic.

About The Founder / Executive Director, Elizabeth Ngonzi


Elizabeth Ngonzi, MMH is a New York-based international social sector leader, educator, speaker and executive coach who enables social impact leaders and organizations to more effectively develop and tell their stories to attract support from their stakeholders. ​During her 20+ year career she has been the turnaround CEO of an international nonprofit organization (one of only four Nelson Mandela-endorsed organizations in the world); been an invited member of the U.S. Speaker Program at the U.S. Department of State; founded and directed her own international social impact-driven boutique consulting firm; taught and guest lectured at top academic institutions in the US and abroad; and delivered training that has transformed lives and organizations worldwide. 

The Institute draws on her skills as an educator, coach and social sector leader; on her gift for fostering connections among individuals and organizations; and on her passion for helping individuals and organizations to thrive by, among other things, telling their stories in compelling ways. She believes the social sector can best position itself for success by focusing on new revenue sources and by employing digital platforms to fund and deliver their services, and reach new audiences, She believes, moreover, that social sector organizations must be more receptive to ideas from unfamiliar sources and from distant places - looking beyond the barriers (including national borders) that artificially constrain organizational thinking and planning.  Finally, she is convinced that the best results can be achieved only when the relationship between funder and recipient is a genuinely collaborative one, in which dialogue produces a set of shared and aligned goals. 

More Information About Ms. Ngonzi

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