Raquel Kessinger

PhD Candidate, MIT Sloan School of Management

Work and Organization Studies Group


About Me

I am a PhD candidate at MIT’s Sloan School of Management studying work and organizations. In my research, I use qualitative methods to explore the changing nature of work through the lenses of employee voice, social movements and organizations, and relationships at work. I explore how exogenous factors—such as a polarized political climate, relentless pressure for companies to grow, and new technologies—are reshaping how employees raise ideas and concerns at work and how they interact with their managers. I employ ethnographic methods, including observations and interviews, as well as archival research to describe how workplace dynamics, manager-employee relationships, and professional expectations are shifting. I have also earned an M.S. in Management Research from MIT.


Prior to MIT, I attended The Wharton School of Business and earned an M.B.A. with concentrations in Organizational Effectiveness, Operations, and Multinational Management. I graduated with honors and during my time there, I served on the board of Wharton Women in Business and worked as a Communications Fellow, coaching peers in corporate and crisis communications. During my two summers in business school, I worked at Spanx on the People Team and as a Summer Consultant at BCG, the Boston Consulting Group.


Before business school, I worked at the Central Intelligence Agency for more than five years as a Terrorism and Security Analyst where I used expertise on terrorist groups, military forces, and security dynamics to write in-depth and current assessments, brief senior policymakers, and provide operational support. I worked at Gerson Lehrman Group, prior to the CIA, as a Research Associate for hedge fund and private equity clients.


I attended Vanderbilt University for my undergraduate studies and there, I fell in love with SEC football, live music, and the city of Nashville… and studied Political Science, Spanish, and Corporate Strategy. In my spare time, I love to travel, spend time with friends and family, cook, read, and take as many Peloton classes as possible.