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Luciana B

- Research Program Mentor

MBA at Stanford University


Business, Wellness, Mental Health, Public Health, Impact Investing, Career Pivot, Brazilian banking system, Entrepreneurship, philanthropy, work-life balance, long-distance relationships, Brazil, living abroad, leadership


I work as a consultant and mentor in projects spanning mental health, business administration, finance, and social impact. I also have extensive experience as a Polygence member for four years, where I've had the privilege of engaging with approximately 10 students thus far. Previously, I held the position of General Executive Manager at Instituto Cactus, a Human Rights Philanthropic Institute dedicated to mental health initiatives in Brazil. As Employee #1, I spearheaded the institute's foundational efforts, overseeing its establishment, structuring, and operational leadership. My responsibilities included strategic direction, project management, budget planning, partnership development, and impact assessment. My dedication to mental health and wellness is evident both personally and professionally, rooted in prior experience as a Strategy & Operations MBA Associate at Cerebral, a direct-to-consumer mental health tech startup in San Francisco. Before Cerebral, I gained experience in impact investing during my four-year tenure at the International Finance Corporation (World Bank), with a focus on the Brazilian financial sector. Additionally, I refined my legal skills as an associate at Mattos Filho Advogados, a firm recognized as Brazilian Law Firm of the Year. My academic background includes an MBA from Stanford University, Class of 2020, alongside dual Bachelor's degrees in Business Administration and Law from Fundação Getulio Vargas, where I graduated at the top of my class. I also received a fully sponsored fellowship at the Université Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV). Fluency in Portuguese, English, French, and Spanish facilitates my ability to engage with diverse individuals and cultures. Outside of work, I enjoy reading, sports such as running, tennis, swimming, and kitesurfing, and indulging my passion for singing. Motivated by a commitment to advancing mental health awareness and advocacy, I am dedicated to catalyzing positive change in the lives of individuals and communities, locally and globally.

Project ideas

Project ideas are meant to help inspire student thinking about their own project. Students are in the driver seat of their research and are free to use any or none of the ideas shared by their mentors.

Mental Health Career (or Startup)

Explore various career paths within the mental health sector, encompassing opportunities in both for-profit and nonprofit organizations, as well as assisting in the initial stages of launching a mental health startup. Upon completion of the project, participants will achieve the following outcomes: Gain insight into diverse career options within the mental health field, enabling informed career decisions. Develop a comprehensive understanding of potential avenues to engage with mental health, whether through employment or entrepreneurship. Acquire foundational knowledge and skills to initiate and navigate the early stages of launching a mental health-focused venture, fostering entrepreneurship in the mental health sector.

Navigating the Social Impact World

Geared towards students seeking to bridge the gap between ideation and product realization, this project aims to guide participants through the intermediary steps involved in transforming an idea into a tangible product. Through collaborative sessions, I will assist students in formulating a Theory of Change, devising impact metrics, and crafting the blueprint for a social venture. Upon project completion, participants will achieve the following outcomes: Develop the ability to conceive a business concept with a focus on social impact, grounded in a Theory of Change framework. Gain practical experience in designing and planning a social impact venture, including the identification of impact metrics and strategic decision-making. Empowerment to either refine their business concept further or initiate the implementation process for their social impact venture.

Languages I know

French (proficient), Portuguese (native speaker), Spanish (advanced)

Teaching experience

I have taught English to low income students in Brazil in a classroom setting, as well as offered office hours to them (from 2016 - 2018). In 2020, I had 6 interns working with me and I also offered coaching/mentoring sessions to them.


Work experience

Instituto Cactus (2020 - present)
General Executive Manager
International Finance Corporation (2017 - 2018)
Acting Investment Officer
International Finance Corporation (2014 - 2018)
Investment Analyst
Mattos Filho Advogados (2013 - 2013)


São Paulo Law School of Fundação Getulio Vargas
BA Bachelor of Arts (2014)
Law & Business Administration
Stanford University
MBA Master of Business Administration (2020)
Business Administration

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