As director of Smith College’s Wurtele Center for Work & Life at Smith College, Jessica Bacal co-leads the Women’s Narratives Project and heads-up a rapidly expanding ePortfolio curriculum. The Wurtele Center’s programs teach leadership skills, life skills, stress reduction and reflection, asking students to think about questions like: What is your story? Where have you been and where are you going? What matters to you? What skills will help you to pursue what matters? What do you do if you don’t know the answers? Jessica’s first book, Mistakes I Made at Work: 25 Influential Women Reflect on What They Got Out of Getting It Wrong (Plume) emerged from experiences with Smith students and from her own transition into higher education. You'll find articles about her work on Inside Higher Ed, HuffPost Women and The New York Times blog "The Choice." Before coming to Smith, she was an elementary school teacher in New York City, and then worked as a curriculum developer and consultant. She received a bachelor's degree from Carleton College, an MS.Ed. from Bank Street College of Education and an MFA in writing from Hunter College, part of the City University of New York.