Jenna Gino ’06
Partner and Research Director, Invisible Science
What piece of advice changed your life?
While considering leaving the intrapreneurship world and going through the “what ifs” of entrepreneurship, a friend in the social work field asked me: “What’s the absolute worst-case scenario you can envision? Can you handle that?” I stopped in my tracks. Yes, I could. It wouldn’t be the easiest road for a short period of time, but that’s not bad. Anytime something has been challenging with my career, I go to that place and ask myself what the worst-case scenario is. If I can handle that, I can take on the challenge. That mindset has really impacted how I assess situations.
What was your path to college?
My parents taught me the critical importance of college. It was instilled in us. But [as I was applying for colleges], there was a significant economic downturn. When there’s such economic uncertainty, something like a substantial investment in a college education is not a given for the average American family. My family was no stranger to these questions. We found a way, but it wasn’t a given.
What’s your advice for those who feel a college education is out of reach?
Don’t dismiss it until you fully explore it. I had no idea how many resources were available to me. The level of support I received at Babson made it a painless process compared to what it could have been. So, do your due diligence and explore what’s out there.
How has being a member of the Babson community helped impact your career?
At Babson, everyone has different passions, different mindsets. Students are thinking about things on a micro scale (like business problems) and on a macro scale (like world challenges). There’s an inherent energy that comes from being around other passionate, motivated people. That has fueled me.
Why does the world need more leaders with an entrepreneurial mindset?
So far in my career, I’ve learned the world is full of unknowns and uncertainties. Even from the time I started college to now, the world has gone through big changes. The entrepreneurial mindset I learned at Babson prepared me to be flexible and adapt to change.
What do others need to know about Babson?
Those unfamiliar with Babson may see it as just a business school. With that comes certain connotations and assumptions—that graduates will be accountants, or do something in finance. Some do land in those fields, but some don’t. The fields my alumni friends are in are so varied; they’re creative, they’re artistic, and they’re entrepreneurial in a reimagined way. Babson’s balanced coursework—50 percent of classes are business-related, 50 percent are liberal arts—makes it more than just a business school.