Karla Magana Figueroa is the proud daughter of a Mexican immigrant who started out picking grapes in the fields of California to provide for her family. Karla has tried to apply the hard work and perseverance she learned from her mother to her academic and professional endeavors. After five years of consulting in the financial services world, Karla is returning to school in fall 2018 to pursue her Master in Business Administration (MBA) at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Karla appreciates that the world of scarcity and lack of agency that her mother grew up in is vastly different from the world of opportunity that she has built for myself. Karla understands the fluidity of the problems that each generation faces and that often times, the best solutions come together when a group diverse in thought assesses all angles. An MBA will provide her with the training and networks to build effective public-private partnerships to address society’s most pressing issues. Karla believes she is a worthwhile investment given her strong academic and professional track records as well as her commitment to mentoring other aspiring immigrant youth. Karla attended Beloit College in Beloit, Wisconsin and graduated magna cum laude in 2013 with a Bachelors of Arts in International Relations and Economics and a minor in Chinese. After graduating, Karla has provided leading strategy and technology recommendations to address business priorities across financial services firms. Outside of work, Karla continues to advance her work in economic empowerment and educational opportunity. At Sponsors for Educational Opportunity (SEO), she founded the Scholars Mentor Council and currently serves as a Co-Chair of the Junior Leadership Board. Karla also serves as the youngest-ever member of the Board of Trustees of her alma mater, Beloit College. Through her work, Karla hopes to empower women, people of color, LGBTQIA+ youth, and underserved populations to maximize their educational and career outcomes.