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18

Oct 2017

Meet the LGBTQ MBA Fellows: Alex Masica

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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.

MEET ALEX MASICA (THE OHIO STATE, FISHER COLLEGE OF BUSINESS)

I am passionate about solving problems for the modern consumer and want to create products and experiences that change peoples’ lives. I enjoy working at the intersection of technology, creativity, and communication. I believe design today is about solving problems and is a critical process to go through in order to make sense of complexity and help humanize technology. As a child, I was always interested in how things were made. As a professional, that has transcended into loving the product development lifecycle in its many forms. I appreciate and value how one-on-one market research mixed with the right data can be the catalyst for driving many new product decisions. I believe in the lean startup and product management models combined with human-centered design, and use them to nimbly learn, produce, fail, and iterate. Working on smaller marketing and product teams has given me the luxury of learning new skills at rapid pace and the chance to make many decisions that affect various channels. From reimagining email marketing programs to developing digital media strategies, my creativity and knowledge of digital marketing are always being put to the test. Outside of work, I enjoy staying active outside by cycling, running, and hiking. I also like to get together with friends for brunch, practice photography, and develop websites.

What made you consider business school?
I chose to attend business school because I wanted to elevate my career, learn the necessary skills for the next stage of my career, and to build a wider network of next-generation leaders.

What are you most excited about in terms of your time in business school?
Honestly, I am most excited about being a full-time student again. I love being in the classroom and learning. Outside of that, I am ready to get involved with various student organizations and learn from my peers. What I think is great about business school is that there is a wide variety of backgrounds, cultures, and career paths that lead everyone to this point—there is so much to learn from everyone.

Who are some leaders (in business, in the LGBT community, in society) that most inspire you?
I’d like to share two. One is local to Minneapolis and one is globally recognized. The first is Nancy Lyons, who is the CEO of Clockwork, a digital interactive agency in Minneapolis. I admire Nancy because of how she runs her business. She begins with hiring smart people who are also really nice (one of the requirements on every job description), trains them well, and then lets them go create great work that clients love. She is also a huge advocate for treating employees well and how businesses can adapt their policies based on employee input. Based on the people I’ve talked with who work for her, this is a huge morale booster for them because they know their leader trusts and respects them. She’s built a people-first culture and I admire her for that. She also sits on a number of boards, including the Family Equality Counsel. If I can be half the leader that Nancy is, I’ll be happy. The global business leader I admire is Sheryl Sandberg. Before reading Lean In, I didn’t know a lot about her. After reading it, I sought out as much information about her as I could find and now try to keep up with speaking appearances on YouTube and other pieces she authors. I admire Sheryl for her compassion and ambition, two traits required to do well in the technology sector. Her compassion shows through all of the work she’s done to shed light on issues women face in the workplace and also in how much pride she has for her own employees. Her ambition has allowed her to chase and fulfill her goals while also empowering other people to chase after their own.

What’s one thing everyone should know about you?
I’m a big advocate of giving back and helping mentor and mold the younger generation. I’ve spent nearly 10 years volunteering with a youth leadership camp in Wisconsin called Badger Boys State, where 17-year-old men learn about the US political system and what it means to be a servant leader among their peers and in their community. I started as a counselor and now lead their media production team.

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23

Jul 2016

ROMBA Student Leader Profile: Nate DeCarolis

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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: Nate DeCarolis

School (Program/Concentration): Class of 2017, Carnegie Mellon Tepper School of Business (Full Time/ Strategy, Marketing, Entrepreneurship)

Summer Internship:  Chief Strategy Office, Mylan NV, Canonsburg, PA

How did your first year in business school prepared you for your summer internship?
The breadth and depth of classes in Market Research and analytics provided a solid foundation for my summer projects.

What experience(s) do you hope to take away from your Internship this summer?
I hope to gain deeper understanding of the pharmaceutical industry, with specific focus on portfolio expansion and management as well as strategic initiatives.

What’s the most valuable piece of advice going into summer internships you can offer the Class of 2018?
Listen and learn. Be open to new experiences and realize you are there to learn. Sometimes it’s best to bite your tongue! ;-)

What are you most excited about for 2016 ROMBA Conference?
I’m super excited to be part of the planning committee, and I can’t wait to see the other ROMBA Fellows and organizers.

Any advice you have for people going into the ROMBA Conference for the first time?
Be prepared… for interviews, for networking, and for fun. Be flexible with your choices of sessions because you may change your mind and attend all of Nate DeCarolis’ riveting panels and sessions!

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22

Jul 2016

ROMBA Student Leader Profile: Jonathan Aronoff

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: Jonathan Aronoff

School (Program/Concentration): Class of 2017, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

Summer Internship:  Synchrony Financial – Marketing Business Leadership Program Intern

How did your first year in business school prepared you for your summer internship?
A whole new toolset for addressing, analyzing, and communicating business challenges. Working on a wide variety of teams with my classmates prepared me to quickly adjust to a cross-functional role in a geographically and organizationally distributed corporate environment.

What experience(s) do you hope to take away from your Internship this summer?
I’m taking full advantage of access to senior leadership and centers of excellence at Synchrony to better understand the roles and leadership opportunities possible in marketing. I’m hoping to map a career path that allows me to continue learning more and applying finance and analytics.

What’s the most valuable piece of advice going into summer internships you can offer the Class of 2018?
This is a ten-week interview. The company is showing you their best and they expect the same from you. Take the time to network, make good impressions, and seek out new challenges. If a company sells itself on diversity, don’t be afraid to dig a little deeper to get a full picture of what that looks like on the inside.

What are you most excited about for 2016 ROMBA Conference?
Reconnecting with friends, organizing some great panels on Consulting and Negotiations, and taking all my classmates out for fun in my hometown.

Any advice you have for people going into the ROMBA Conference for the first time?
There’s nothing like it. You will barely know anybody going in, but look around and you’re completely at home with this crowd. Put yourself out there and have fun. Just don’t try to keep pace with everyone else at the bars; you still need to maintain some veneer of professionalism to get that internship. Arrive at all your meetings and interviews with time to spare.

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