Leading with pride at Carey and beyond

Current MBA student Brian Kendrick reflects on their time at the 2024 ROMBA Club Leadership Summit. “It’s truly an inspiring experience to be a part of.”

group photo of students smiling outside on pavement with trees in the background

Held in April, the 2024 Reaching Out MBA Club Leadership Summit brought together leaders of LGBTQ+ student organizations from business schools nationwide to develop their leadership skills, network and engage with peers, and gain insights on fostering an inclusive environment.

Reaching Out MBA, referred to as ROMBA, is a platform that promotes LGBTQ+ leadership within the business world and provides a space to educate, inspire, and connect MBA students and alumni.

Carey has been a proud partner of ROMBA since 2018, offering ROMBA Fellowships to LGBTQ+ business leaders in the Full-time MBA, Flexible MBA, and Design Leadership MA/MBA programs. ROMBA Fellows at Carey receive professional development opportunities, funding, and networking events including the ROMBA Club Leadership Summit, the Out Women in Business Conference, regional networking events, Summer Treks, and the annual ROMBA Conference.

This year’s summit emphasized the importance of diversity and acceptance in the business world, leaving a lasting impact on one Carey MBA student.

Brian Kendrick (MBA ‘26) describes their overall experience at the summit as validating, humbling, and transformative.

Kendrick said ROMBA has provided many opportunities, inspiring them to apply for the summit’s planning committee. Their leadership capabilities and enthusiasm led to their selection for the role.

“Being able to help organize such an impactful event truly highlights how far I’ve taken the lessons and skills learned both in and out of the classroom and in my current career to further support the LGBTQ+ community I belong to,” Kendrick said.

Kendrick was tasked with planning and organizing a networking event, and designed a New York Times Connections-themed session to highlight the common ground between queer MBA student organizations from different programs and the great work each organization has done.

As a current MBA student, Kendrick was able to use skills learned from the MBA program’s data analytics course to help formulate topics for the session. During planning and execution, they utilized self-awareness, motivation, and engagement lessons learned from the Leadership and Organizational Behavior course at Carey. They also utilized event planning lessons and skills learned from their current leadership role as director of operations and administration for Carey’s Pride Business Association.

Kendrick said one of the biggest takeaways from the summit was the gap in financial and social support among LGBTQ+ student organizations across MBA programs. They said it’s important for those who are backed by their schools and local communities to extend their support to fellow LGBTQ+ MBA students.

“Being part of the summit was humbling. I was surrounded by individuals who are driving change in their programs and within the community. It was truly an inspiring experience to be a part of. It motivates me to consider how we can continue this momentum during our time at Carey and in the Pride Business Association,” they said.

In addition to being an MBA student, Kendrick is also a ROMBA Fellow at Carey.

Kendrick has set three goals as a ROMBA Fellow: to strengthen their impact with other queer students across different programs to form connections that will extend beyond their time at Carey; to further develop an approach to fostering intentional and impactful empowerment of queer-identifying individuals throughout their personal and professional life; and to challenge themselves to define and execute the authentic aspects of their unique leadership style.

“As a ROMBA Fellow, engaging with both the ROMBA and Carey communities has been incredibly rewarding. In ROMBA spaces, I take pride in representing Carey to show the strength and commitment to humanity that a Carey education embodies. In Carey spaces, I am equally proud to bridge connections between Carey, the ROMBA community, and the broader queer community in and outside the school,” Kendrick said. “It not only advances my career but, more importantly, fosters dialogue about the strength and impact of the queer community. It allows us to explore more ways to empower other queer-identifying MBA students and broaden our collective sense of empowerment.”

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six people standing on stairs in a V formation smiling for picture
person presenting at front of room with presentation on projector screen in the back


Upcoming Carey application deadlines

The Fall 2025 Full-time MBA application is now open. Applications for all other Fall 2025 programs will open this fall. Please visit our upcoming deadlines webpage to view all application, decision, and deposit deadlines.