Sep 092014


Accountability Lab Team

The Accountability Lab student team and client. From left to right: Blair Glencorse, Mae McIver, Wenxiao Lu, Chelsea Wallace

Last Spring, Chelsea Wallace served as a Strategy Consultant for Accountability Lab – a DC-based nonprofit determined to bolster accountability in countries such as Nepal and Liberia. She and four other graduate students from the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland helped Accountability Lab prepare their model to be replicated in new countries.

Accountability Lab bolsters accountability by partnering with government representatives in order to incorporate trust and cooperation into their decision-making and relationships. Through a Nonprofit consulting project, Chelsea and her team analyzed Accountability Lab’s operating model, standardized their processes and compiled it into an easy-to-use document. “We were all able to pull from past experiences and think outside of the box to give Accountability Lab a final product that they will be able to incorporate into their business plan.” said Chelsea.

The end deliverable was a handbook that Accountability Lab staff can use on the ground in new countries. Wallace and her team also analyzed Accountability Lab’s revenue model to help them develop creative and sustainable revenue streams as they expand.

Chelsea found the whole experience extremely rewarding. Her team worked closely with Accountability Lab’s Associate Director in Nepal, and had access to several consulting resources. The Center for Social Value Creation also provided a great deal of support, serving as a connector for Wallace and her team and hosting the Symposium which gave the team an opportunity receive constructive feedback on their project.

After the final deliverable was presented, Anne Sophie Lambert, Associate Director at Accountability Lab, noted, “The student consultants exceeded our expectations in their ability to tackle some of our biggest organizational challenges with competence and professionalism.”

Reflecting on the experience, Chelsea said, “It was definitely a test of my organization skills and really pushed me to take my leadership to the next level.  More importantly, it was also extremely satisfying to see, first-hand, the impact of our product.  The success of the project depended greatly on the success of our teamwork and I could not have asked for a better team*.”

About Nonprofit Consulting Nonprofit Consulting Program matches talented undergraduate and graduate students with semester-long business consulting projects for nonprofit organizations in need of consulting assistance with strategic projects. This program is open to all students at the University of Maryland. Apply to be a student consultant or contact Program Manager Pammi Bhullar ( with any questions. Applications to be a Fall, 2014 Consultant are due September 15th, 2014!

*Smith Graduate Team included Chelsea Wallace, Rahul Shah, Mae McIver, Wenxiao Lu, and Jeanne Powell


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