PRIDE is HBS's home for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning MBA students and their partners. PRIDE builds community through dedicated social and advocacy programming, and in doing so create a supportive environment for emerging leaders to engage meaningfully with one another, connect with employers seeking diverse talent, and drive thought leadership in key areas of business and management.

Here, three current MBA students discuss their experiences as LGBTQ+ students in the PRIDE community.

Henry Kline (MBA 2025)

I have always valued the unspoken bond in the LGBTQ+ community. Before coming to HBS, I worked in finance, and through joining LGBTQ+ mentoring programs like Out4Undergrad and founding pride networks at prior companies, I developed a strong sense of community. These groups provided a foundation of support and camaraderie that helped me navigate my professional journey.

When I arrived on campus last fall, I found true friendship through PRIDE at HBS. I have built lifelong friendships with people with whom I have spent every day of the past year. Even within my own section, I found a great group of LGBTQ+ classmates to connect with on everything from case to life discussions. This incredible group of people has supported me through the past year; they are truly such incredible and unique individuals.

This June, I'm also celebrating the HBS allies—roommates, section mates, and classmates—who have shown unwavering support for the LGBTQ+ community. Their acceptance and encouragement have been instrumental in my growth, and I am proud to see our allies support our community.

To me, Pride is about celebrating who we are and honoring those who struggled before us and will continue to face challenges after us.

Mark Nowicki (MBA 2025)

I first came out nearly 10 years ago as a freshman in college, and Pride’s meaning morphed a lot in that time. At first, it was something I watched from afar. Then, it was something I flirted with: a parade this year, maybe nothing next year. Now, it’s something I cherish as a time to celebrate our identities, to give thanks to those who came before us for the hard battles they fought, and to remember that our work isn’t done.

This year, I’m especially thankful for all the queer friends I’ve made in and out of HBS. Never in my life have I been surrounded by such a full and loving LGBTQIA+ community. I’m also thankful for my husband, Connor, for coming with me on this weird and wonderful journey.

I expect Pride will keep changing in meaning for me as time passes, but I know one thing won’t change: that closet door is rotted and gone, and she isn’t going back on the hinges.

Happy Pride, y’all!

Alex Bjelde (MBA 2025)

PRIDE has been the most vital and important part of my HBS experience. Prior to coming to HBS, I was based in NYC for 7 years where my social circle and community were almost entirely LGBTQ+. Coming to HBS was a huge adjustment for me – leaving my chosen family and support system behind and immersing myself in a new world I wasn’t familiar with. I think people often downplay how hard that is regardless of who you are and where you come from. But for queer people, it can be especially hard. PRIDE was my savior – my safe space, my comfort zone, my support system, my friends, my dance partners, my dinner dates, my chosen family.

I have made my best friends through PRIDE, and it is one of the biggest reasons I have had such a positive experience at HBS. I became Co-President to give back to the community and to make PRIDE bigger, better, and stronger for future classes. After all, as Dua Lipa says, “Life is way more fun with the gays!”