Nov 2017

Meet the LGBTQ MBA Fellows: Kai Jhou

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The Reaching Out LGBT MBA Fellowship is a scholarship and leadership development program for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer 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 access to all Reaching Out programming (including the ROMBA Conference), LGBTQ mentors, digital programming, and a leadership summit exclusively for the Fellows.  Since the inception of the ROMBA Fellowship 129 students have received over US$6.2M in scholarship support from participating schools.

This fall Reaching Out welcomed the third class of the ROMBA Fellows. These 56 fellows come from 35 top business schools and over the next month we’ll introduce each of them to you.

41 MBA programs will be part of the Fellowship for the 2017-2018 application cycle. To learn about the Fellowship and let schools know of your interest here.


I am Kai from Taiwan, MBA candidate at USC Marshall, class of 2019. For the past four years, I have been working in Macronix, the world’s largest Read Only Memory (ROM) and NOR Flash Memory producer. As a Senior Marketing Specialist, I mainly focused on marketing communications, including promotional material, advertisement and trade show. I developed company profile with CEO to fulfill the need of different marketing segments. Moreover, I was the coordinator of 3-year Marketing Center Improvement Project with Vice Presidents and Marketing Directors. I organized their master action plans during meetings that lasted for months. I received my BBA degree in Management Science at National Chiao Tung University in Taiwan and spent one year at Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden as an exchange student. I enjoyed the experience so much that I co-founded an alumni association and served as the president. Exchange students going to Sweden can get information and tips in experience sharing events before departure. We also held a seminar and invited GM and employees from Swedish companies in Taiwan, and some members got hired! In my free time, I love traveling (visited 28 countries in four continents), movies, and playing board games with friends.

What made you consider business school?
I would like to pursue an international marketing career, as I have the passion to develop international markets and solve cross-cultural marketing problems. MBA is ideal for upper level management training. First, I can further deepen my marketing knowledge in a systematic way. Second, since communication and integration within an organization is vital, I will appreciate the opportunity to explore other corporate functions and learn how to cooperate with them. Last, MBA can provide the cultural exposure while I work with other international students in case studies and group discussions.

What are you most excited about in terms of your time in business school?
Learning and getting inspired by talented people from different industries, functions, and countries. I look forward to the sparks during case studies and group discussions.

Who are some of the leaders (in the LGBTQ community, in business, or in society) that most inspire you?
Ellen DeGeneres, as she spreads positive energy and joy to the world. Be kind to one another, and we can make the world a better place.

What’s one thing everyone should know about you?
I am driven by exploring, performing, and community, and I really enjoy interacting with people from different cultures. For example, I volunteered as an English free walking tour guide for a NPO named “TourMeAway” in Taipei. Working with and learning from my amazing fellow tour guides, I sharpened my presentation, performing, and cross-cultural communication skills. Storytelling and delivering an informative and entertaining experience to customers give me joy beyond description. I developed many jokes and enjoyed seeing the audience laugh, and I often get 5-star reviews on TripAdvisor.

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