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Beth Schmidt

Founder and Executive Chairman

Los Angeles '07

Beth Schmidt
Career Path
Career PathMiddlebury College, Loyola Marymount Career SectorNonprofit & Social Services
  • Middlebury College: Mentor Program

    Beth first experienced educational inequity while mentoring in college. Her student was bright and eager to learn, but had few teachers who pushed her. She wasn’t getting the education she deserved.

  • Teach For America: Los Angeles Corps

    Beth’s students excelled when researching programs they were passionate about. She raised money so some could attend. This sparked the idea for her future startup.

  • Kauffman Labs Education Ventures Fellowship

    To help develop her idea, Beth participated in a year-long educational, networking, and leadership program dedicated to the cultivation of high-technology, high-growth, and high-impact companies. 

  • Founder and Executive Chairman,

    Wishbone works to eliminate the opportunity gap by sending low-income students to high-quality summer programs, inspiring them to redefine their futures and follow their passions. 

  • Education Portfolio Manager, Emerson Collective

    Beth leads grant making efforts for a portfolio of partnerships with nonprofit entrepreneurs and organizations focused on improving outcomes for students and advancing broader social justice efforts.

Q & A

What influenced you to pursue a career related to education?

Growing up, I benefited from attending great schools and was encouraged to pursue my personal passion: competitive figure skating. I realized how important a well-rounded education is, and once I became aware that so many students don’t have access to this, I wanted to get involved.

How did your teaching experience lead you to become the founder of a start-up?

During the corps, my students became really engaged when they were able to research programs related to their passions. I raised money so that some students could attend these programs, and the outpouring of support made me realize that I could turn this into something that would benefit many more.

What skills from the classroom have you used in leading your own organization?

In my classroom and in my organization, students come first. There are many similarities between teaching and building an organization. You must be bold, set ambitious goals, invest people, and help them develop. You must innovate and change your approach based on challenges and opportunities.