News & Events

Programming for This Year’s Diversity & Inclusion Symposium Announced

Oct 20, 2020
The virtual event will be held on Friday, November 6, to be followed by “The Vanderbilt MBA Experience” on Saturday, November 7

By Kara Sherrer

Prospective MBA students are invited to attend this year’s virtual Diversity & Inclusion Symposium, which will be held on Friday, November 6, from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm CST. The event is the first part of the Discover Vanderbilt Business weekend, which will continue on Saturday with additional programming during the same time slot.

The theme for this year’s event is “The Business Case for Diversity and Inclusion.” The symposium will allow attendees from a variety of backgrounds and perspectives to discuss, learn, and share experiences on the business model importance of diversity and inclusion and other trending topics within this same space.

“The business case starts with understanding your own business and circle of influence and that starts with asking questions and looking at data. This conversation is ongoing and this event is for everyone: prospective students, current students, alumni, members of the business community — not just in Nashville but around the world,” said Sue Oldham, Associate Dean of MBA Operations.

The keynote speaker is Ashlee Davis, Vice President and Senior Diversity & Inclusion Manager at AllianceBernstein (AB), a global investment management firm operating in 22 countries. In this role, Davis is responsible for expanding and leading AB’s diversity and inclusion strategy in San Antonio and AB’s global headquarters of Nashville, the assessment and cultivation of key community partnerships, and partnering with AB’s senior executives to implement effective and measurable D&I action plans.

The keynote speech will be followed by quick flash sessions that cover a variety of topics, including being an inclusive leader and ally and struggling with imposter syndrome. Participants will choose one flash session to attend during each of the time slots. The day will wrap up with networking sessions and a student/alumni panel.

The agenda for the first day’s events is as follows:

  • 10:00 a.m. – 10:55 a.m. Welcome, Introduction, and Keynote Address by Ashlee Davis, Vice President and Senior Diversity & Inclusion Manager at AllianceBernstein (AB)
  • 11:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Flash Sessions
  • 11:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Flash Sessions
  • 12:00 p.m. – 12:30 p.m. Breakout Networking Sessions
  • 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. Student and Alumni Panel: D&I at Owen and Beyond
  • 2:00 p.m. – 2:15 p.m. Closing Remarks

Friday’s programming will be followed by an equally full slate on Saturday that will dive into the Vanderbilt MBA experience. Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in a mock class, interact with current students to hear their candid perspectives, and learn more about life in Nashville.

Throughout the weekend, participants will have the chance to talk with current and prospective students, alumni, Owen faculty and staff, as well as corporate and community partners. The entire event will be virtual and attendees can join from anywhere. Participants are encouraged to attend as many events on the 2 days as they are able.

Learn more about the weekend’s events at this registration link.

Other Stories

Want to learn more about the Vanderbilt MBA?