Mentor Me India is managed by a Harvard-India dream team

passionate in expanding opportunities for children in India from low-income communities. We bring management consulting and finance backgrounds from companies like McKinsey, Dalberg Global Development Advisors, The Parthenon Group, J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley, as well as on-the-ground teaching experience from Teach For India.

Our experienced and well-connected Board of Directors will oversee and guide the success of the program. In addition, our Management Team can draw on an Advisory Council that supports it with functional expertise and coaching.

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Dayoung Lee (Founder)

Dayoung holds an MPP and MBA joint degree from Harvard Kennedy School and Harvard Business School. Prior to Harvard, she was a management consultant with The Parthenon Group and Dalberg Global Development Advisors. She has extensive experience in tackling strategic challenges, especially in education after working on over a dozen education cases in the US and abroad. Most recently, she led the India team for the multi-million dollar fund aimed at accelerating universal primary education (Millennium Development Goal 2) in identifying the most effective programs to educate out-of-school children. Through this project, she formed invaluable relationships with leading education experts and non-profit leaders in India. Other projects include crafting a digitization strategy for College Board, supporting the Gates Foundation in evaluating a series of education reforms to measure teacher performance, and advising South East Asia schools on curriculum design, pricing and marketing tools.

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Shruthi Iyer (Executive Director)

Shruthi joined Mentor Me India as an Executive Director in May 2017. Prior to this, she was an independent consultant with social enterprises offering implementation support in operations and training. She brings strong operational experience in scaling mission-driven organisations, expertise and networks in the child development and education space, and a track record and thoughtful ideas around building a culture of excellence.

 

Before her stint as a consultant, Shruthi managed the Teacher Training vertical at Hippocampus Learning Centres. She has worked on technology rollouts, government pilots in Anganwadis and running programs in and after school. Some of her other independent projects include training NGO leaders on business skills, operations and building team culture, researching and implementing processes for social enterprises to scale, conducting contextual and targeted workshops on design thinking, and training the trainers.

 

Shruthi began her career at Infosys Technologies before becoming a Teach for India Fellow in 2012. She is also an Acumen Fellow and holds a Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Science from Visvesvaraya Technological University.

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Jesmina Sangma (Recruitment and Operations Associate)

Jesmina joined Mentor Me India in 2017 after completing her BSc. in Zoology from Gauhati University, Assam followed by her Masters in Social Work from Dibrugarh University, Assam.

She has previously worked with Apne Aap Women’s Collective, Mumbai in addition to interning for Oasis India (Mumbai), World Vision (Guwahati), Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE), and volunteered as a teacher to children from low-income communities. She is extremely passionate about working with children, adolescents, and youths and is a proud social worker. She has a keen interest in working towards the causes of education, Human-Trafficking prevention, and Child Rights. She loves meeting new people and learning new languages.

She is an optimist at heart.

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Sabaah Potia (Senior Program Coordinator)

After completing her Bachelors from Jai Hind College in EnglishLiterature, Sabaah joined Teach for India as a fellow. She taught 100 kids in grade 2 and 3 at a school in Mumbai for 2 years. She simultaneously pursued her masters in English from University of Mumbai, solely for her love of the subject. She has worked as a freelance Curriculum Designer and has made plans for Leadership Boulevard and designed special after school classes titled ‘Career samples’ on fashion for students aged 9-12 at Kangaroo Kids Education Ltd. Her dream is to somehow link her love for Art, Literature, Fashion and Dance with her love for children from all walks of life to inspire them to explore every opportunity that comes their way. She hopes to come closer to her goal by joining Mentor Me India’s mission to build a system of mentoring that is the most fruitful and longstanding means of volunteering.

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Ankita Saumya (Program Coordinator)

With a passion for working with children, Ankita joined Mentor Me India as a Program Coordinator after completing her Master’s in Social Work with specialization in Equity and Justice for Children and Families from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. Because she is creatively inclined, prior to her MA, she had done Bachelors in Design course from National Institute of Fashion Technology and worked in the retail sector for international brands like U S Polo and Ed Hardy.

Since childhood, she has seen her mother work diligently in the social sector. Taking inspiration from her mother and realizing that her true interests lie in working for children’s development, she wants to work in the education sector and for child protection. Aligning her interests with MMI’s vision, she hopes to leave a lasting impression the children’s lives.

Krushna Dharia

Krushna Dharia (Program Coordinator – Take Charge)

 

Krushna has completed her B.A. in Economics and Political Science and M. A. Social Work from College of Social Work, Nirmala Niketan. She has worked in the social sector since, with Vatsalya Foundation, GRAVIS and Majlis. After her year as a Program Manager at Apne Aap Women’s Collective, Krushna has joined Mentor Me India as a program coordinator for our collaboration with Take Charge.

Krushna is optimistic and loves stand-up comedy. Her love for helping people brought her to MMI and she aims to help each and every mentee develop to their fullest potential.

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Diana Aranha (Program Coordinator)

Completing her Bachelors and Masters in Social Work from the College of Social Work Nirmala Niketan, Diana has developed an understanding on various issues by working in organisations like Akanksha, CHIRAG (Community Health Initiative and Research Action Group), Akshara, Byculla Prison and Jagruti Kendra. She has also done an internship with Astha in Rajasthan and has voluntarily worked with an organisation Dosti that works with the community.

Richa Arora

Richa Arora (Program Coordinator)

Richa joined Mentor Me India as a Program Coordinator after completing her Master’s in Social Work (Equity and Justice for Children and Families) from Tata Institute of Social Sciences (Mumbai). Prior to that, she graduated from Delhi University, specializing in the streams of Development Communication and Human Development.

From a very young age, she has been inclined towards the development sector. She has interned with various organizations such as SRF Foundation, Prayas, Save the Children India and Vaagdhara. She is extremely passionate about empowering children. She holds a special interest in working on issues related to child rights and child protection. She seeks to take the organization’s mission further by being able to reach out to and empower as many children possible with MMI.

Rashi Kotak

Rashi Kotak (Communications Associate)

Rashi is a book-lover and passionate about fine art. She has pursued her Post-Graduation in Political Science and International Relations from Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University. Before joining Mentor Me India, she has volunteered with UNICEF (Gujarat), Pankh (an initiative of TRRAIN for the champions with disabilities) and Yuva Unstoppable.

Rashi believes that it is little things that make up this big world and this is what keeps her motivated at all times. Working with children brings a big smile to Rashi’s face and that is largely why she feels so united with Mentor Me India and our cause.

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Janavi Parikh (Communications Consultant)

Janavi is a traveller at heart and loves to tread off the beaten path. She is passionate about writing and learning languages and has completed her B.A. in English Literature from St. Xavier’s College. She worked in digital marketing with DigitasLBi for two years, post which she chose to work as a marketing consultant primarily to start-ups and NGOs. She loves volunteering her time, and has previously volunteered as a teacher with Down to Earth, Mumbai and SECMOL, Ladakh.

Her goal is to experience first-hand and simultaneously enhance the role of being a mentor. She is currently mentor to a 12 year old  with Mentor Me India.

Prashant Nair

Prashant Nair (Software Consultant)

Prashant has 7 years of professional IT experience and currently works full-time as a Lead Software Engineer at V2Solutions. He completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Information Technology from the University of Mumbai, before going on to attain a masters degree in Computer Applications from Sikkim Manipal University. He also has a Post-Graduate Diploma in Business Administration in E-Business from Prin. L. N. Welingkar Institute of Management in Mumbai. He began his journey with us as a mentor in 2014 in our Bhandup cohort. Soon after, he decided to dedicate his spare time to help us choose and develop the right technology solutions as we expand our efforts and grow in strength. Prashant loves children and is constantly inspired by their sheer energy, enthusiasm, and capacity to learn.​

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Valerie von der Tann (Program Director)

Valerie is a Senior Associate with McKinsey’s Berlin office and part of the founding team of Mentor Me India. Strongly believing in the power of mentoring to transform lives, she co-founded Mentor Me India while pursuing a Masters in Public Policy at Harvard Kennedy School from 2012-14. Valerie was responsible for the development of Mentor Me India’s program strategy as well as its brand and communications strategy.

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Victoria Peill

Victoria is working as a consultant at the Boston Consulting Group. Studying economics at the University of St.Gallen she developed a strong interest in economic development, especially for education, which is rooted in her time as a primary school teacher in Peru.  After University she gained additional experience at a foundation aiming to bring agriculture into the desert and an e-commerce startup in Bangkok. Victoria has spend multiple months on the ground in Mumbai building the foundation of Mentor Me India with a team in 2013 before joining BCG in Berlin and continues to contribute her expertise and passion for education.

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Nathalie Laidler-Kylander

Nathalie Laidler-Kylander is a Lecturer in Public Policy and Senior Research Fellow at the Hauser Center of the Harvard Kennedy School. Nathalie also currently teaches at the Fletcher School, Tufts University. Nathalie’s prior work experience includes several senior marketing positions in both the private and public sectors. She holds a BSc in Biochemistry, an MBA from Harvard Business School and a PhD from the Fletcher School. Nathalie has written numerous case studies in the fields of International Marketing and Nonprofit Branding and has published a case book on Nonprofit Brands as well as several articles on Nonprofit Brand Equity. Her recent research interests continue to focus on the role of nonprofit brands and the emergence of the forth sector. Nathalie is supporting us with branding as well as general project advice.

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Gaurav Gupta

Gaurav Gupta is Dalberg’s Regional Director for Asia, based in Mumbai, and also co-leads the firm’s Energy and Environment practice. His work includes developing social impact strategies for multinational corporations, expanding energy access, assisting market entry into frontier markets, and helping to develop strategies to fight human trafficking. In work outside of Dalberg, Gaurav has been a founding partner in a string of social ventures including two eco- resorts, a sustainable tourism online platform, an organic tea plantation, and an eco-friendly fair trade fashion label. Gaurav is on the advisory boards of several rural energy and social entrepreneurship funds and sits on the curriculum advisory board for the Economics department at St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai. Prior to Dalberg, Gaurav spent six years at The Boston Consulting Group in Sydney and London. He holds a BA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from Oxford and an MA in Development Economics from Yale University.

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Rupa Pandit

Ms. Rupa Pandit is the co-founder and Managing Director of Nereus Capital, a private equity fund focused on Indian renewable energy generation. Ms. Pandit has over twelve years of experience in alternative asset management and has been investing in Indian companies since 2005. She previously held roles at the D. E. Shaw group in New York and as an entrepreneur in the internet technology and healthcare sectors. She is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, MA, USA.

Rupa has participated in MMI as a mentor since its inception as part of the first cohort with Shindewadi School. She has built a strong friendship with her mentee Niha Dawat in the last two years and believes that mentorship is a two-way relationship where both parties equally learn from and support the other.

Vikram Gupta

Vikram Gupta

Vikram is a Director at Metro Realty, a real estate development company, where he manages M&As, financing, strategy, legal and operational activities. He is the Founder and Director of Gaia Conservation Foundation, a Mumbai-based environmental nonprofit organization. As a Board member, Vikram supports Mentor Me India with finance and fundraising. He studied Business Administration at Babson College. A nature and wildlife enthusiast, he is also passionate in improving the lives of children in India.