The Reaching Out LGBT MBA Fellowship is a scholarship and leadership development program for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and active ally MBAs in full-time programs. Each Fellows receives at least $10,000 funding per academic year (or $20,000 total for his/her/their two years) in addition free lifetime access to all Reaching Out programming (including the ROMBA Conference), LGBT mentors, and a leadership summit exclusively for the Fellows.
This fall Reaching Out welcomed the second class of the Reaching Out LGBT MBA Fellows. These 44 fellows come from 30 top business schools and over the next month we’ll introduce each of them to you.
35 MBA programs will be part of the Fellowship for the 2016-2017 application cycle. To learn about the Fellowship and let schools know of your interest here.
MEET ANA TESTOLINI (Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management)
Ana is a first year MBA candidate at Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management. Born and raised in a small town in the outskirts of São Paulo (Brazil), she moved to Chicago in 2009 to pursue an economics degree at the University of Chicago. Following her graduation, she worked at Discover Financial Services for 5 years in various roles in Credit Risk Management and Digital Marketing. In addition, she was the Events Chair of Discover’s LGBTQ Employee Resource group and organized Discover’s participation at the 2016 Chicago Pride Parade. On her spare time, Ana enjoys cycling in the summer, ice skating in the winter, and watching hockey (Go Blackhawks!).
What made you consider business school?
After working in Risk Management for 4 years, I realized that, while I enjoyed the work I was doing, I needed to broaden my horizons and look for something different. But more so than a career change to Consulting or Marketing, what I am truly looking forward to is challenging the status quo and opening myself to even more opportunities that I have not yet imagined, opportunities which will only come with the MBA experience.
What are you most excited about in terms of your time in business school?
It’s hard to pick one thing! But I am mostly excited about meeting new people and learning more about their stories and values. I believe that ultimately the diversity of people we meet helps to shape us as human beings, and I am looking forward to having the opportunity to learn from people with different backgrounds and life experiences than my own.
Who are some leaders (in business, in the LGBTQ community, in society) that most inspire you?
Tony Robbins for influencing so many people to improve themselves, and Sara Bareilles for not just writing inspiring songs, but mostly for being a kind and genuine person doing everything she can to make the world a better place.
What’s one thing everyone should know about you?
I love watching and playing sports, even though I’m not particularly good at any. I used to dance ballet growing up but unfortunately had to stop when I got to college. I’m always up for watching a game, a ballet performance, or a musical!