2023 Best & Brightest Business Major: Jennah Motani, USC (Marshall)

Jennah Motani

University of Southern California, Marshall School of Business

“Living life with a genuine smile, an open heart, and a craving for adventure.”

Fun fact about yourself: In high school, I took part in a research expedition that studied the effects of climate change in Northern Mongolia.

Hometown: Calgary, AB

High School: Li Po Chun United World College of Hong Kong

Major: Business Administration

Minor: Applied Analytics, Nautical Sciences Program

Favorite Business Course: Social Entrepreneurship

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:


  • USC Marshall Trustee Scholar
  • USC Marshall Dean’s List

Extracurricular Involvement:

Trojan Consulting Group – Strategy Consultant, President, Senior Advisor

  • Spring 2021 – Present
  • Formulate actionable growth strategies and recommendations for Fortune 500 businesses and nonprofits
    • Clients: Lyft, Microsoft, AT&T, Chipotle, World Health Organization

USC Marshall Career Center – Consulting Peer Career Advisor

  • Fall 2022 – Present
  • Advise USC Marshall students looking to enter the field of consulting through exploring the industry, developing a recruitment strategy, conducting resume/cover letter reviews, and hosting workshops

USC Athletics – DEI Student Researcher

  • Spring 2021 – Present
  • Quantify progress towards improving diversity and inclusion within USC Athletics through collecting and analyzing qualitative and quantitative data from staff, coaches, and athletes
  • Synthesize findings and recommendations for improvement into DEI report for NCAA and Head of USC Athletics

USC Nautical Sciences Program – Teaching Assistant

  • Fall 2022 – Present
  • Host review sessions for students in Nautical Sciences classes to clarify class concepts
  • Act as first mate aboard voyages on historic LA brigantines

180 Degrees Consulting – Consultant, Project Manager, Senior Advisor

  • Fall 2019 – Present
  • Conduct pro-bono consulting engagements with local social enterprises and nonprofits
    • Clients: Special Olympics of Southern California, With Love Cafe, Community Health Council of LA, George Mark Children’s House

USC Career Advantage Program

  • Fall 2020
  • Received mentorship from a professional within consulting industry to better understand the field and discuss how to position myself for success in consulting recruitment

Global Leadership Program – Participant

  • Fall 2019 – Spring 2020
  • Invitation-only for top 80 freshman business students in USC Marshall
  • Attended weekly classes and guest speaker events with industry leaders sharing insights and advice
  • Prepared for trip to Beijing and Shanghai to meet business professionals through basic language classes and lessons on Chinese culture (trip canceled due to COVID-19)

USG Presidential Campaign Team – Assistant Campaign Manager

  • Spring 2022
  • Strategized and executed successful presidential and vice-presidential undergraduate student government campaign alongside team of 7

Where have you interned during your college career?

  • Trellis Capital Corporation – Summer Intern (Remote)
  • Amazon – Sophomore Area Manager Intern (Shakopee, MN)
  • Bain and Company – Associate Consultant Intern (Los Angeles, CA)

Where will you be working after graduation? Bain & Company – Associate Consultant (Los Angeles, CA)

Who is your favorite business professor? During my junior year, I was lucky enough to take a class taught by Siroya Shivani, the founder of Tala, a non-profit that strives to provide financial independence to people in underserved communities around the world. Through hearing her own experiences in the business world and learning from the guests she brought to class, I left each day feeling empowered and inspired to use my background and education to create systemic change in society. I admire her tenacity, compassion, and commitment to improving the lives of others, and look to her as an example of the kind of business leader I would like to be.

What is the biggest lesson you gained from studying business? My biggest lesson from studying business is the importance of investing in genuine relationships. Relationships are at the foundation of businesses, and connecting with peers, mentors, and the community is ultimately what inspires new business to emerge and allows established businesses to grow. My studies have emphasized the importance of being a good teammate, a kind leader, and an active listener, which has furthered my ability to foster close relationships and expand my network.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? The field thrives on diversity in ideas and backgrounds! Whether you’re into finance, art, or anything in between, you will learn something from studying business that you can apply to your professional pursuits, and there’s a pathway for everyone from business. Create your own experience in your studies, and push yourself outside of your comfort zone. Take the business classes that pique your interest and inspire you, and take every learning opportunity that comes your way.

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? Throughout my time studying business, I’ve been most surprised by the diversity of backgrounds and career goals of my peers. Coming into USC, I wasn’t aware of how many opportunities are available to business majors. I’ve since realized that a background in business is valuable across many industries, and the skills gained are transferable across fields. In my classes, I’m surrounded by musicians, entrepreneurs, consultants, producers, authors, engineers… This makes for engaging conversations, creative ideas, and unique perspectives.

Looking back over your experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently in business school and why? In retrospect, I would’ve loved to study abroad during my time at USC. My years in Hong Kong in high school were among the most transformative in my life, as I developed a deeper appreciation and understanding of new cultures and perspectives, so I think I would’ve gained a lot from studying in a new country during college as well. I enjoy exploring new places and meeting new people, and living in a new environment would’ve been an amazing opportunity to achieve that. I ultimately decided against it because my time in LA was interrupted by COVID-19, so I wanted to make the most of living in California for the remainder of my time in college.

What business leader do you admire most? I have profound respect for Yvon Chouinard, the founder of Patagonia. He has set an incredible example of building a company that creates a positive impact in the world. I admire his ability to create a brand that reflects his own principles, and commend the commitment he has shown to sustainability and the environment through his actions. He stands by what he believes in and ensures that Patagonia stays true to the values upon which it was built, and I admire the generosity he has shown as a business leader.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? My biggest achievement to date has been receiving a full-tuition Trustee scholarship to attend the University of Southern California. This scholarship is awarded to approximately 100 students each year, and opened up a whole world of possibilities for me. I’m a second generation Canadian, and my parents are both refugees from Uganda, so attending a school like USC seemed unimaginable. This scholarship was life-changing for myself and my family as the opportunities afforded to me through attending USC were previously inaccessible. USC has opened my eyes to new passions and dreams, and provided me with resources to enable my success. Above all, USC has given me a community of peers and professors who have supported me endlessly and have inspired me to invoke positive change.

Which classmate do you most admire? Since the day I met Emy Li in junior year, I was amazed by her selflessness, passion, and brilliance. I have had the honor of working with her in the Trojan Consulting Group, and she inspired me to give the organization all that I could as President. She stands by her values, fights for what she believes in, and is the hardest worker I’ve ever met. Best of all, you never catch her without a smile on her face. She makes the world better and brighter.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? My brother, Adam Motani, has been my best friend and greatest role model in life.  Adam has inspired me through his work ethic, ambition, and commitment to constant learning. He challenges me in the best way, keeps me grounded, and pushes me to be better. He’s had unwavering confidence in my abilities for 22 years and never fails to remind me of what I’m capable of, even when I forget. He provides me with direction and mentorship, both personally and professionally, and I wouldn’t be who I am today without him. I couldn’t ask for a better brother, and I am so grateful for him.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list?

  1. Start a social enterprise that leaves a lasting, positive impact
  2. Work abroad and see the natural wonders of the world

What are your hobbies? Sailing, camping, hiking, fitness, music, traveling, exploring National Parks, road trips (in case you haven’t noticed, I like being outside!)

What made Jennah such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2023?

“Jennah is a first-generation, international student majoring in Business Administration with a minor in applied analytics. She is a Trustee Scholar and former GLP participant.  Not only is Jennah strong academically, but she has made the most of her time at USC by starting on her career journey very early on.  She has completed internships in venture capital, tech (Amazon) and will be joining Bain and Co. upon graduation as an incoming Associate Consultant.

I have the privilege of working with her as her supervisor for her Peer Career Advisor (PCA) role for our consulting team.  Jennah decided to work as a PCA to give back to Marshall and to encourage those who face self-doubt to focus on their unique qualities. When she meets with students, she encourages them to focus on what they bring to the recruitment process and not compare themselves to others. I have had students tell me how sweet she is, and helpful. It is no wonder she received the Gandhi Award for Kindness in 2018 on a trek to Mongolia in 2018. Jennah helps prepare our Marshall students for one of the most challenging interview processes, case style interviews. She collaborates with the other 3 consulting PCAs to create workshops to teach casing and help them create strategies. She has served as co-president of The Trojan Consulting Club and 180 Degree Consulting. In addition to her role as a PCA, she is a student researcher for USC Athletics DEI HUB. In that role, she facilitated the Associate Athletic Director of DEI with launching affinity groups for student athletes, and creating an educational curriculum for athletes and staff in order to foster inclusivity and diversity within the Athletics Department. Jennah is a great example of what Marshall represents: strong academics, compassion, a growth mindset, and giving back to the community.  It is my pleasure to submit this nomination for her.”

Claudia Aguilar
Associate Director of Undergraduate Career Services


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