‘CBS love’ is a term we use a lot around the business school - so much so that we turned it into a population hashtag #iheartcbs. It describes our sense of community, appreciation for the school, and excitement about our MBA experience. However, I never felt quite as much ‘CBS love’ as I did during Cluster Q’s Ally Week.
For those unfamiliar with the term ‘ally,’ it refers to those – typically straight – who actively support the rights and inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning (LGBTQ) individuals.
This past week, Cluster Q – CBS’ LGBTQ affinity group – hosted Ally Week to raise awareness about issues affecting LGBTQ individuals and to give ally leaders the tools they need to combat discrimination and create a more inclusive environment.
The love I received from the CBS community during this week was beyond my wildest expectations. Students, faculty, and staff actively sought-out and wore our ally stickers and bracelets to visibility show their support. Many told me stories about their friends, families, and co-workers who had struggled to come out and asked for advice on how they could better help.
During Ally Week, we signed-up over 300 Allies and raised $1,700 for Athlete Ally and the Ali Forney Center for LGBTQ homeless youth. Though we still have a ways to go for full equality, my hope is that through events like Ally Week we are shaping future business leaders to be inclusive, address discrimination when they see it, and actively fight for LGBTQ individuals.
Below are just a few highlights from the week, which will hopefully give you a sense of just how powerful the CBS community is!
GBA Co-President Gil Valdez ’14 shows his support for Ally Week on the Uris Hall video screens.
Bryan Blaise ’14 shares his personal coming out story as part of Cluster Q CBS Matters.