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Nithin Jilla
Nithin Jilla

Nithin Jilla

Dream for Schools

Irvine, CA USA

"The people around me have always put me on my true north, on my path."

Career Roadmap

Nithin's work combines: Non-Profit Organizations, Technology, and Helping People

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Day In The Life

Executive Director

I run a nonprofit that encourages students to pursue careers in STEM.

Skills & Education

Here's the path I took:

  • High School

  • Bachelor's Degree

    Computer Science

    University of California, Irvine

Here's the path I recommend for someone who wants to be an Executive Director:

Bachelor's Degree: Computer Science

Learn more about different paths to this career

Life & Career Milestones

My path in life took a while to figure out

  • 1.

    In high school, I was part of a class effort to help a school in Kenya and found myself really happy being in the service of others.

  • 2.

    From very early on, I wanted to make sure I was helping and nurturing people throughout my life.

  • 3.

    I never thought I would be a business owner, but I realized I wanted independence with my work.

  • 4.

    Having a lot of good mentors helped clarify what I wanted to do with my life.

  • 5.

    Got a full time job but called them a week before to tell them the opportunity wasn’t right for me.

  • 6.

    When I got to the University of California, Irvine (UCI), I started Dream for Schools to help students learn more about STEM.

  • 7.

    The organization has grown to the point that it’s helping hundreds of kids every year across sixty schools annually.

Defining Moments

How I responded to discouragement


    Messages from Myself:

    I don't know if this is something I'm going to enjoy.

  • How I responded:

    I really stuggled trying to figure out if I wanted to go the safe route and get a normal 9-to-5 job that is secure or go the more challenging route of being an entrepreneur. At first, I wasn't convinced that I could be an entrepreneur. I just never saw that as an option for myself. It was only after talking it over with a lot of my mentors and my family that I realized that I wouldn't be happy unless I tried to do what I was truly passionate about. So, I took that leap.

Experiences and challenges that shaped me

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  • I started out my career working in a very traditional IT job, sitting at a desk programming. I struggled with the idea of going the entrepreneurial route. I was eventually convinced to pursue it thanks to my mentors.

  • I was born and raised in India and came to the U.S. as an immigrant. I never thought that the goal of having my own business was even attainable. It just wasn't in my mindset, so overcoming that was definitely a challenge.