The Latino Student Organization (LASO) proudly promotes and supports Harvard Business School’s Latino students and works alongside the Latino Alumni Association (HBSLAA). Representing a wide range of backgrounds, experiences, interests, and Latino heritage, LASO members spearhead initiatives related to MBA admissions, alumni engagement, career development, and more to advocate for and empower the Latino community on campus and beyond. The LASO Board is led by the club’s three Co-Presidents – Victoria Alvarez-Arango, Ale Eguren, and Olivia Melendez – who are all excited to continue LASO’s legacy this upcoming year.

LASO Priorities for 2021-2022

Our priorities this year are focused on community building, sustaining and celebrating LASO history and tradition, fostering a strong pipeline of diverse applicants, and giving back to the broader Latinx community.

We plan to meet these goals through several approaches. First, we plan to bring back in-person traditions and institute new events; we recently hosted our first Taco Tuesday of the semester and it was wonderful to see new and old LASO members all together! Second, we will continue our partnership with HBS MBA Admissions to encourage more Latino prospective students to apply. Thirdly, a new initiative, LASO Scholars, is our way of giving back to the Latinx community by pairing HBS students with local high school students. The goal of LASO Scholars is to create meaningful mentor-mentee relationships and to empower young Latinx talent.

Lastly, we will leverage the power of the Adelante Conference, our annual Latinx professional conference that brings together current and future Latino leaders. This will be hosted on-campus on February 6th, save the date!

Meet the LASO Leadership

The three of us represent Cuba, Puerto Rico, Panama, Chile, and Peru; hail from Miami, New Jersey, and Panama City; and worked in financial services, healthcare consulting, and tech before business school. We all bring excitement, passion y sabor to LASO’s leadership.

Victoria Alvarez-Arango

“I first heard about LASO when I was connected to MBA students at HBS through MLT (Management Leadership for Tomorrow), a nonprofit dedicated to growing the network of diverse leaders. When I visited for Admitted Students Weekend, I was welcomed by the Latino student community and walked away with a greater appreciation for the thriving Latinx community and friendships LASO members made at HBS. During my first year, I served on LASO’s Admissions Committee because I wanted to encourage more diverse candidates to apply and to pay it forward for the coffee chats that I had the benefit of learning from when I was a prospective applicant. I ran for Co-President because I wanted to further strengthen the Latino community at HBS and to ensure pre-pandemic traditions carried forward for future LASO members.”

Ale Eguren

“Why did I join LASO? Because this community is creating a home for Latinx folks in the U.S. and beyond. We focus on empowering members of our community to go forward, be a role model, and make a difference in our world. And to do it in their own way! As a kid who grew up in so many different countries, my roots were purely through my family and the Spanish we spoke at the dinner table. It wasn’t easy being the outsider as we moved around. Which is why I’m driven to create a home in LASO. As a prospective student, LASO members reached out to me to help me through the application process. They believed in me and now I’m passionate to pay it forward. During my first year I was a co-lead on our finance team pitching sponsorship opportunities to companies to support our members. Now I’m honored to serve as one of our Co-Presidents helping unleash the amazing potential of an already so-vibrant community.”

Olivia Melendez

“Over the last two years, LASO has been there for me every step of the way. Throughout the MBA application process, LASO offered me advice, encouragement, and even a few mock interviews. After being admitted, it felt like a different LASO member would call me every day to welcome me to the community. When I was anxious about internship recruiting last winter, a LASO alum offered me incredible insight, advice, and connection. I felt the strength, warmth, and passion of the LASO community before I even stepped on campus and it’s only grown since I’ve been here. “Exceptional” is the only word I can think of to describe this community. The spirit, drive, and tenacity of LASO is what makes me so excited about our future together and motivates me as Co-President. I’m looking forward to keeping our passionate LASO community alive and reinvigorating our membership base to serve one another, our greater Latinx community, the next incoming HBS class, and our incredible alums.”

Thank you for reading, and to all aspiring and prospective applicants, ADELANTE!