Black History Month 2021: Bi Zan Valery Lorou, LGO ’19

I was blessed to be part of the LGO Class of 2019. I had a great time with an amazing group of talented and supportive classmates, and received the best education I could have ever imagined getting. The program provided me with the tools to be successful in life. In every class I took at LGO, I looked around and I saw very few students of color. I realized that I was very fortunate, and I always wondered how I could help other minority students have the same opportunity. Growing up in Cote d’Ivoire, I learned that my success could lead others to do the same. As a student, I would often volunteer for admission events, where I hoped to meet minority students so that I could explain why LGO could be the right place for them. After graduation, alongside other LGO alumni, I wanted to continue this initiative and with the support of LGO leadership, we founded the LGO URMAG (Underrepresented Minority Alumni Group).

black history month 2021 bi zan and URMAG feature

Our mission is to bring more underrepresented minority students to the LGO program and to help strengthen a more diverse community of students and alumni through networking and mentoring. We are very excited with this initiative as we see a need to grow the URM community at LGO.

The advice that I have for you, prospective minority applicants, would be that if you are wondering whether you have a place in the room full of talented LGO students, I will assure you that you not only deserve to have a seat in that room, but most importantly the room needs you, your future classmates need you. They need you to share with them your talent, your awesome achievements, your opinions, your innovative ideas so that you can create a better LGO community. So when you are putting your application together, don’t think about what you can’t do, instead think about what you will be bringing to the LGO community, think about the difference you made in the life of people around you, think about how you will change for the better. There is a seat for you at LGO. You just need to go get it. Trust yourself, stay confident in what you can achieve, and you will do great. LGO wants you!


By Bi Zan Valery Lorou, LGO Class of 2019