Prior to HBS, Karla Mendez was working as a management consultant in the Silicon Valley, focused on customer-centric engagements for technology clients. She wanted to pursue an MBA to hone her leadership skills, develop more confidence in the workplace, and gain expertise in areas she was passionate about such as diversity, marketing, and education. 

Now a first year student at HBS, she has become an active member of the Latino Student Association. Here’s what she thinks prospective students should know about the Latino club and community at HBS. 


At business school, I wanted to connect with like-minded peers who would push the boundaries of diversity, have meaningful conversations around inclusion, and drive change in the workplace to address challenges faced by Latino Americans. 

LASO is a community that has allowed me to grow my leadership skills and be surrounded by others that want to make a difference in the world. LASO has also connected me with other students that can sympathize with me, while still challenging me to find wants to connect with the broader HBS community. The student club has demonstrated to me that to be impactful in our mission, we need to not be inclusive within ourselves, by open to all affiliations and create a single HBS community that is comfortable and engaging for all. 

The major highlight for me thus far has been the immense amount of support ECs have provided to RCs. I was pleasantly surprised to receive a call from LASO when I was admitted into HBS, and cannot fully express how much I appreciate the thoughtful advice I’ve gained through LASO thanks to all the panels, one-on-one mentorship, and newsletter information received. 

LASO is incredibly important as a student organization on campus because it demonstrates that HBS is an inclusive environment that not only accepts, but truly supports the development of future leaders with any affiliation. HBS is a home for all future leaders who want to make a difference in the world - and student organizations like LASO provide students a smaller subset of that home to learn, flourish, and drive change.