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Apr 2016

Standing with Duke Fuqua and UNC Kenan-Flagler Against HB2

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Current and admitted students at Duke Fuqua's 2015 LGBT Admitted Student event.

Current and admitted students at Duke Fuqua’s 2015 LGBT Admitted Student event.

We at Reaching Out MBA want to express our support and solidarity for our schools in North Carolina  in the wake of the passage of House Bill 2. We know that the passage of HB2 is damaging, but we want to stand in strength with our students, leaders, and clubs at the Kenan-Flagler School of Business at UNC and the Fuqua School of Business at Duke.

Representatives from UNC Kenan-Flagler Pride Club at the 2015 "Ask A Queer" event.

Representatives from UNC Kenan-Flagler Pride Club at the 2015 “Ask A Queer” event.

Fuqua Pride and UNC Kenan-Flagler Pride Club have each spoken out against the anti-LGBT legislation, noting that #WeAreBetterThanThis. We know, and our students know, that laws like this are not what North Carolina is about. Below are the public statements from Fuqua Pride and UNC Kenan-Flagler Pride Club.


Statement from FuquaPride and its Allies at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business:

FuquaPride, the Duke MBA LGBT network, in conjunction with Fuqua’s student government, the MBA Association, as well with our allies in the MBA Association of Women in Business and the Black and Latino MBA Association, is deeply troubled by North Carolina’s regressive HB2 law. Today, we publicly reconfirm our commitment to growing and maintaining the Fuqua value of Collective Diversity that keeps “Team Fuqua” special and a transformative experience for its members. The installation of a gender neutral bathroom, the success of all FuquaPride events (including the sold-out annual drag show), and the prioritizing of LGBT admissions efforts are proof to the inclusive and thriving environment for LGBT students at Fuqua and of our school’s support. This law will not change that.

We can’t change this legislation tomorrow, but we do have the power – through our hearts and our actions – to send a signal today to North Carolina that as members of Team Fuqua and other leading MBA programs #WeAreBetterThanThis.


As student representatives at UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School, we condemn the actions taken by the North Carolina General Assembly and Governor Pat McCrory to pass House Bill 2 into law. HB2 intentionally excludes the LGBT community and veterans from statewide anti-discrimination protections in employment, housing, and public accommodation, and prohibits and nullifies any local law or ordinance that provides such protections. Passing this law egregiously erodes civil rights protections, endangers some of the most vulnerable members of our community, and harms the reputations and cohesion of our state, local governments, and valued institutions.

The proponents of this bill invented a moral panic out of whole cloth, depicting transgender individuals as predators intent on accessing bathrooms to assault women and children. Not only is there no record of any such thing ever occurring, but transgender people are often put in serious danger when forced to use facilities conflicting with their gender identity.

We applaud the major employers in our state that have staked out clear positions against HB2. However, we have severe concerns that the law will make it impossible for our top-ranked school to continue attracting the best students, faculty, and staff. HB2 is rapidly wearing away our state’s global reputation as a beacon of growth and innovation. As a public institution of North Carolina, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School’s reputation will likewise suffer among prospective students, the companies that recruit our graduates, and the international business community.

Our leaders’ actions place North Carolina wholly on the wrong side of history. We choose to stand by the core values of our school: excellence, leadership, integrity, community, and teamwork, and so we implore the General Assembly and Governor McCrory to reconvene and cooperate to pass a comprehensive non-discrimination act that respects, values, and protects all of North Carolina and our people.

Susan Lawrence Hedglin, President of the MBA Student Association

Jonathan Aronoff, Vice President for Diversity

on behalf of:

MBA Student Association Executive Council

Association of Minority Business Students

MBA@UNC LGBTQ Interest Group

Pride Club

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Mar 2016

NCAA, It’s Time to #GiveBackIX

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Reaching Out is proud to join a coalition of over 70 LGBTQ, sports, religious, and youth advocacy groups calling on the NCAA to divest from all religious-based institutions who have made Title IX requests to discriminate against LGBTQ youth. In 2014, the U.S. Department of Education decided to include protection for transgender students under Title IX, triggering these religious exemption requests from 59 NCAA member institutions on Campus Pride’s #ShameList.

We stand with Campus Pride reminding the NCAA of its core values of integrity, inclusive culture, and sportsmanship. The NCAA should continue its longstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion of all people, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity or expression. Transgender people already face systemic discrimination and disproportionate rates of poverty, suicide, and murder. Schools that are affiliated with the NCAA should be dedicated to fostering a campus that allows all students to flourish both academically and in co-curricular activities such as athletics.

Along with Campus Pride and the other signatories on the letter to the NCAA President, NCAA Executive Team, and NCAA Board of Governors, Reaching Out is committed to the students at all of our LGBT Club Affiliate schools, and we hope to see movement from the NCAA on this matter soon. It’s time to #GiveBackIX.


Dec 2014

Keynote Update: Another Reason Why Janet Mock is Fierce

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Wharton MBA Rada Yovovich interviews Janet Mock at the 2014 Reaching Out LGBT MBA & Business Graduate Conference

Renowned author and activist Janet Mock served as the marquee speaker during the Reaching Out LGBT MBA & Business Graduate Conference (ROMBA) this past October in San Francisco.  If you had the opportunity to see Janet speak in this intimate Q&A environment, you know that she’s smart, outspoken and fresh.  However her latest initiative makes us love her even more!

Earlier this month Janet launched an Indigogo campaign called #TransBookDrive.  The campaigns from this fund will be used to send her book “Redefining Realness” to transgender prisoners throughout the US.

Why is it important to help educate and inspire this often forgotten group of prisoners?  Well, did you know that one in six transgender Americans has been in prison?  Or that and just under half of all transgender black people?  According to Lambda Legal these are some harsh realities the transgender community faces just in the United States. This campaign helps ensure that these prisoners are able to read stories they can directly relate to that inspire and motivate them.

So check out and consider donating to Janet’s #TransBookDrive campaign (Campaign runs until December 30, 2014).


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