Tuesday, October 7, 2014

2014 Reaching Out MBA (ROMBA) Conference

This past week LGBTQ students from Chicago Booth attended the 2014 Reaching Out MBA (ROMBA) conference in San Francisco. Each year ROMBA is held in a different US city with the purpose of bringing LGBTQ MBA students from all the top business schools together to empower them to become professionals who will lead the way to equality in business education, in the workplace, and throughout society. I had the privilege to accompany 13 first year Boothies to the conference.

Last year I attended the conference as a first year in New Orleans. The three-day event was full of cocktail parties, case competitions, industry panel discussions, interactive break out sessions and networking events. Many firms even invite 1st year MBAs to interview for summer internships. This year was no different. As a 2nd year MBA, the conference was less stressful as I was not focused on the job search. I attended the conference to represent Deutsche Bank and speak to prospective summer interns about my summer experience during the LGBTQ Talent Career Expo. I interned at Deutsche Bank this summer and signed on to return after graduation from Booth this June.

Conference highlights:

Peter Thiel gives his keynote

Day 1
SF technology and entrepreneur trek – MBAs visited Twitter, Walmart Labs and other local SF tech companies
Women @ Romba sessions
Welcome Reception hosted by Goldman Sachs

Day 2
Various career sessions (Investment Banking 101, Finding Success in Consulting, Etc)
Marquis Dinner and Keynote Speaker: Jonathan Mildenhall (CMO of Airbnb)

Day 3
Case Competition, Valuation Competition, Start-up Pitch Competition
Awards Lunch and Keynote Speaker: Peter Thiel (Paypal - Entrepreneur and Investor)
Closing Charity Party (Sponsored by Target and Unilever)

Bradley Powell and Chris Lee

Piya Chaiprasoet
Chris Lee and Bradley Powell (Booth 2016) won the Valuation competition beating out the other top MBA programs with their valuation of UBER. They won a $2,500 cash price.

Part-time student Piya Chaiprasoet also represented Booth right with a win during the Amazon case competition.

Prospective MBAs can also attend the conference and meet with the top 30 business schools. ROMBA will be held next year in Chicago (Oct 8 – 10 2015). To find out more about ROMBA: http://www.reachingoutmba.org

Boothies at the LGBTQ talent career expo
Bradley Powell and Kati Karottki snap a quick photo after running to the Golden Gate Bridge

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