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24

Jul 2016

ROMBA Student Leader Profile: Lev Eldemir

Posted by / in LGBTQ BUSINESS STUDENT BLOG / No comments yet

In addition to Reaching Out’s staff, each year the Reaching Out LGBT MBA & Graduate Conference’s content is developed and produced by MBA & graduate students from schools across the world. These core group of the students working on the ROMBA Conference are known as the “Student Leadership Committee.”  The Leadership Committee comes up with the conference’s theme, ideates all breakout sessions, and is seen prominently on the ground at the conference!

Over the next few weeks we’ll highlight each of this year’s 11 organizers and share some of their tips for those planning to attend this year’s ROMBA Conference in Dallas (Oct 6-8)!  Not only will they tell you what they are most excited about for this year’s conference, but they’ll also give inbound LGBT MBA students tips on the summer internship search & experience!

Name: Lev Eldemir

School (Program/Concentration): Columbia Business School (Full Time, Strategy / Management)

Summer Internship:  Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices – Marketing Leadership Development Program Intern; U.S. Marketing, Biosurgery; Somerville, NJ

How did your first year in business school prepared you for your summer internship?
Specifically, an elective course – Marketing Research & Analytics – provided me with a solid foundation in market research methods to hit the ground running.

What experience(s) do you hope to take away from your Internship this summer?
With no previous experience in Marketing, I hope to gain a firm understanding of the strategic/business planning aspect within a Marketing role. I also am very excited to see how marketers leverage data to formulate insights that inform their strategy. Separately, working within Healthcare, I am excited to understand the thought processes of surgeons in different specialties and how J&J engages them to develop new products.

What’s the most valuable piece of advice going into summer internships you can offer the Class of 2018?
Relax and be ok with not knowing things. Identify who will be strong resources for you and be proactive about asking questions – never spin your wheels. Also, remember that as an MBA student, you likely have a strong track record – believe in your ability to learn quickly, draw upon your previous work and school experiences, and make an impact with your projects.

What are you most excited about for 2016 ROMBA Conference?
Continuing to make new connections and reconnecting with friends I made last year.

Any advice you have for people going into the ROMBA Conference for the first time?
Understand what your priorities are and stay focused – whether that’s networking with companies, building relationships with other MBA students, exploring different job opportunities, and/or engaging in interesting panel discussions. Fun is also encouraged, but keep it classy. Don’t let a hangover prevent you from engaging in the awesome content and with professionals & students! Lastly, don’t be too clicky with your school -meet new people! It will not only be beneficial to you in the future, but it will also strengthen the LGBTQ community as a whole. ROMBA is truly such a unique and empowering experience.

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14

Jun 2016

#WeAreOrlando: A Letter and Request from Reaching Out’s Executive Director

Posted by / in Blog, LGBTQ BUSINESS STUDENT BLOG / No comments yet

Where were you Saturday night?

I was at my wedding. My husband Shawn and I have been together over 13 years and following last year’s marriage equality ruling, we decided to finally tie the knot. It was a joyous celebration with friends and family. Following the event about 30 of us ended up at a nightclub with our friends and stayed until close.

Luckily I happened to be in California, but I could have been in Orlando and the night might have ended much differently. I still haven’t processed what it means that my wedding will forever be tied to such a callous act towards the LGBT community. Worse yet is the thought that any of us celebrating a night out in such a perceived safe space could have been in a situation like the shooting victims at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando.

While our thoughts can go to the victims, that’s not enough. Yet it also isn’t productive just to get angry or sad, and many of us are wondering what we can do to help and to heal.

Reaching Out was founded with the simple principle that if we come together as LGBT MBAs (both students and professionals) we hold great power and influence that can impact change. It’s time to give back and use that collective voice to help those from the LGBT community who need support.

With that in mind, we are asking all students and professionals in the Reaching Out network to join us for a donation & Thunderclap campaign to raise money for the victims and their families of the Orlando Pulse Nightclub shooting. For those unfamiliar with Thunderclap, it is the first-ever crowdspeaking platform that helps people be heard by saying something together. It allows a single message to be mass-shared, flash mob-style, so it rises above the noise of your social networks.

Here’s what you need to do:

1)  Make a donation to the Victims the Pulse Shooting Fund

This fund was established by Equality Florida and supported by the National Center for Victims of Crime, which deployed funds in both the Chattanooga and Aurora shootings. All funds will go directly to the victims and families of the shooting.

2)  Sign-up for our Thunderclap campaign & let all our voices be heard collectively on Sunday

It may feel like your voice is lost by itself, but together we can be heard and influence others to add their support.  Let’s show that LGBT MBAs can and will give back to our greater community. On Sunday at 12noon, any social networks you register with will show the following:

“I’m joining LGBT & Ally MBAs around the world in donating to the Pulse Victims Fund #LGBTMBAsGive #WeAreOrlando http://thndr.me/SzcuWg”

Please join us and show that together we can have an impact.

Sincerely,

 

Matt Kidd

Executive Director

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27

Apr 2016

Learning Together on Lake Michigan: 2016 Club Leadership Summit in Chicago

Posted by / in Blog, LGBTQ BUSINESS STUDENT BLOG / No comments yet

We had a great time in Chicago with the incoming leaders from over 30 LGBT MBA student clubs from schools across the U.S., Canada, and Europe! What a jampacked day it was. On a beautiful, sunny day, we learned about the highlights and challenges across many of our clubs at this 10th annual event, which is made possible by a generous donation from Shorenstein Properties in memory of Richard Chicotel, one of their out LGBT leaders who died unexpectedly on January 10, 2012 .

Despite vast differences in size of membership, engagement with the administration, and number of events, all our clubs showcased their unique LGBT campus pride… in about 3 minutes each as we kicked off the morning.

Our student leadership gave us great lessons across the board. Meghana Raghavan (Booth School of Business, Class of 2017) moderated a fascinating panel on the unique experiences of international LGBT MBAs. Given the sizable population of international students in North American business schools, we’re glad that Meghana’s panel gave us insight into the intersection of being international, LGBT, and a business student in the U.S.

Over lunch, Kellogg School Professor Julie Hennessy taught our club leaders about how to market and brand their clubs to maximize appeal and to be as effective as possible on their campuses. We were proud to be joined by admissions officers from Kellogg and Booth in the afternoon, who offered professional guidance as our students dove into a mini-case discussion on how to incorporate more LGBTs into business school admissions.

Later on in the afternoon, some representatives of our 2016 ROMBA Conference planning committee introduced this year’s theme: Authentic Disruption, and got the energy up for the conference in Dallas! 162 days and counting…

Finally, before we all headed out for a delicious Italian dinner, our club leaders divided their energy between three stimulating afternoon breakout sessions on ally programming, how to bring greater equality for LGBTs into a business school’s recruiting process, and how to create a stronger space for bisexual and transgender people, as well as those who aren’t comfortable with being out yet.

All in all, this year’s Club Leadership Summit was filled with learning, laughter, and last connections for the upcoming year and beyond. We look forward to seeing everyone at the 2016 ROMBA Conference in Dallas and throughout the year across the country!

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