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Jessica D

- Research Program Mentor

MBA at University of Chicago


Starting / running / growing a business, program, or product. Especially anything value- or mission-driven.


Former Bain consultant turned tech-for-good product leader. Jessica started in finance and management consulting, with a focus in organizational strategy. After her son was born she pivoted to social impact, leveraging technology to scale for-good initiatives. Her work has ranged from launching personalized learning technology to partnering with Foundations to inventing the birthday fundraiser for Facebook (which raised over $300M for non-profits in its first year alone). Nowadays Jessica partners with select start-ups as a strategic consultant, helping companies establish clear goals and roadmaps and helping technology products become more user-centered. She is committed to promoting equity and is a dedicated mentor to up-and-coming students, as well as an advisor to multiple non-profits. Jessica has deep experience working with early career individuals. She has run intern programs for multiple organizations, created and run entry-level professional development programs, and developed and run apprentice programs for aspiring consultants and product managers. She takes a skills-based approach to mentoring, where mentees build deep real-world skills in addition to executing on a given project. While firmly believing that degrees are in no way a measure of a person’s abilities, Jessica happens to have a BA from the University of Southern California and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. She is forever grateful to Santa Monica Community College for offering a two-point-something high school graduate with a 4th grade math education a gateway to opportunity.

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.

Start-Ups 101

Learn everything you need to launch, refine, or expand your start-up. Haven't started yet? We'll begin with ideation, market research, go-to-market strategy and more, taking your idea from an initial concept to a robust, actionable business plan. Already have something built? We'll evaluate where you are, determine what is needed next, and take things from there. You'll learn not just how to move forward (or not!) with your current business idea, but a strategic way to evaluate potential businesses, programs, or products in the future.

Launch a volunteer program

We will explore the unique skills and resources that you bring the table, what needs you see in your local community, and what resources you might be able to leverage. From there we will work together on everything from ideation to market research to go-to-market strategy, taking your idea from an initial concept to a robust, actionable plan. Volunteer programs are unique in that they are more successful the more people you're able to involve - along the way, you'll learn and practice key skills around growing and leveraging an engaged network.

Management Consulting 101

Interested in consulting? The best way to learn is to just get started. We'll work together to find a real business that can use your support, and go from there. You'll gain firsthand experience scoping a project, managing client communications, and leveraging qualitative and quantitative data to execute on a project. We'll close with making sure your resume and LinkedIn showcase your experience.

Product Management 101

Gain real-world experience at product management. Whether you're more interested in traditional product management, UX design, UX research, or product analytics, we'll create a custom experience that lets you learn.

Teaching experience

I have mentored and managed high-school and college interns and apprentices, and early-career individuals. I enjoy teaching the less-discussed skills, approaches, and strategies that are applicable across projects / workplaces, and empower young adults to be successful wherever they end up.


Work experience

Todayist (2020 - Current)
Above the Line LLC (2017 - Current)
Bain & Co (2012 - 2013)
Facebook (2012 - 2013)
Social Impact Product Development Consultant


University of Southern California (USC)
BA Bachelor of Arts (2005)
University of Chicago
MBA Master of Business Administration (2012)
Strategy, Management, Finance

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