Zim Ugochukwu, a UNCG alum from the Biology Department with a minor in Political Science, was featured by BlackEnterprise.com as a rising star and entrepreneur.

In a special section titled Power Women of the Diaspora, the website featured Ugochukwu’s global travel, social media expertise and entrepreneurship experiences. Named Glamour Magazine’s “20 Amazing Young Women Who Are Already Changing the World” and Triad Business Journal’s “Top 40 Under Forty,” Ugochukwu is a first-generation Nigerian-American who has cloned genes linked to genetic disorders, among other endeavors.

She recently launched Travel Noire Academy, an online travel school comprised of courses and challenges tailored to the black experience, and is in the process of expanding due to her work as a producer for the Digital Health Summit at CES. The summit is important for discovering ways technology can create change in developing countries. To add to those adventures, Ugochukwu once traveled on a 10-day, 4,900-mile national journey on a train through India to shadow social entrepreneurs.

Of her experiences in social advocacy as a student at UNCG, Ugochukwu said that she “was very community-oriented in college.”

“As part of my political science course requirements, I had to choose an internship with the political campaign for Barack Obama or John McCain. Of course, I chose the Obama campaign. This experience opened my eyes to what it means to be a young person and be engaged.”

She also cited her travel for the “Forget Tobacco” organization, where she said she “educated young people on tobacco use and tobacco industry marketing tactics,” and her work with Ignite Greensboro, a campaign to raise awareness about the Civil Rights Museum.

Her work in India involved living on a train that takes 400 youth and 50 international participants on a journey through India to shadow various social entrepreneurs. She received the Henry Luce Fellowship to work with an international organization to help teach social entrepreneurs in Asia.

Ugochukwu said that she got the idea of Travel Noire during this trip, when she saw people who looked like her doing something she once thought was unattainable. “I started to think about how I could reframe the images of African Americans traveling,” she said.

“I’d gotten incredible feedback from people who were inspired by us to travel the world that I wanted to take it to the next level. I wanted to transform what people saw on Instagram and read on the Travel Noire platform into something more actionable, more tangible. The Travel Noire Academy is the first travel school of its kind, comprised of courses and challenges tailored to the black experience.”