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CU Alumna and Hamilton Cast Member Finds Identity in Christ By Ashley LaLonde Growing up in the heart...
September 1, 2014

Nicole Mensa, Cornell '17, Founder of Non Profit in Ghana

by Eileen Scott, Senior Writer


From Africa to Ithaca, Nicole Mensa, Cornell '17, is serving people and sharing the message of God's love and compassion.

A native of Ghana, Nicole came to Cornell for a top-flight education and to experience another culture; because of her participation with Christian Union's leadership development ministry at Cornell, she is also growing in her knowledge of the Bible and passion for the Lord.

"I come from a strong Christian family and I have always been a Christian. However, I have grown in my faith and in my desire for Christ even more since I have been at Cornell," said Nicole.

The freshman was particularly attracted to Christian Union at Cornell because of the unity and love among the members, Christian Union Bible courses, and the academically rich leadership lecture series. Buoyed by that love and her faith in Jesus Christ, Nicole has been able not only to transition to living in a new country, but also continues to serve the people of her homeland.

In May 2012, she founded ProjectHey, a non-profit organization designed to give underprivileged children in Ghana an education in information communication technology. HEY is an acronym for "Helping to Educate the Youth."

"I realized that the use of technology was spreading rapidly around the world and that, indeed, the youth who lacked knowledge when it came to computers and technology would suffer greatly in the future," said Nicole.

After visiting schools in Ghana, she noted that many did not have computers and decided to do something about it. Each year, ProjectHey chooses a school in desperate need of technology equipment and provides computers and three weeks of training for the children.

Nicole is currently an economics major minoring in history, Africana studies, and anthropology. She is also involved with the Cornell Annual Fund and the Cornell International Affairs Society.

The realization that Christ gave Himself for her compels Nicole to give of herself and her talents to others.

"I try to lead not just as any leader, but in the way Christ would lead," she said.
Nicole credits Christian Union at Cornell with positively impacting her leadership development. As an assistant Bible course leader, she has learned the importance of caring about people and has gained valuable insight into organizational management.

With an eye on her work, Nicole keeps her heart fixed on the Lord as she grows as a leader and strives to do what is right in the sight of God, even during challenging times.

"As a Christian leader, I have come to realize that it is important to persevere and never to give up," she said. "I look at leaders like Moses who, despite everything, fought for his people. Indeed, such leaders inspire me to do what is right and to have patience when things do not go as expected."