A large, diverse group of students poses in a bar

By Noelle Rotte, MBA student and VP of Communications and Outreach for the Kellstadt Collective

As a first-year student at the Kellstadt Graduate School for Business (KGSB), navigating the endless opportunities and organizations on campus is both exhilarating and overwhelming. However, amidst all the options available, one organization that stands out as a beacon of inclusivity, collaboration, and professional growth is the Kellstadt Collective.

My introduction to the Kellstadt Collective began with the opportunity to revamp the organization through my position as a graduate assistant. I have been able to work with four other MBA students to relaunch a group open to all of KGSB. Little did I know that the Kellstadt Collective was destined to become a cornerstone of my experience at DePaul.

A Successful First Event

Our first event, a study break/happy hour in the Fall Quarter, exceeded all expectations with nearly 70 students in attendance. Our event was located at 2Twenty2 Tavern, just a block away from DePaul’s Loop Campus. We brought together students from all Kellstadt programs, including the MBA and M.S. degrees in marketing, business analytics, hospitality leadership, finance, economics, accounting, supply chain management and many more. This event allowed KGSB students to meet new people outside of their program while grabbing a bite to eat and drinking a cocktail or two.

The success of this event is a testament to Kellstadt students’ desire for more in-person events tied with the ability to make meaningful connections in the KGSB community.

Looking ahead, we plan to hold a professional development event in the winter quarter and have other events, both professional and informal, in the pipeline. Kellstadt students — stay tuned!

From “Partners” to “Collective”

The Kellstadt Collective stemmed from the organization previously known as Kellstadt Partners. While the mission of the revamped organization is aligned closely with the original group’s mission, the leadership of the 2023-24 academic year felt compelled to redefine the group’s essence.

In particular: We felt that the term “partners” suggested a space for spouses or significant others, veering away from the essence of inclusion that truly defined the organization. The name Kellstadt Collective emerged because we wanted to embody a community built on the inclusion of all KGSB students.

We then decided to create a mission centered around the growth and inclusion of KGSB students. Our mission aims to:

  • Foster an inclusive environment of collaboration, professional growth, and shared success by leveraging the diverse talents and backgrounds of our members.
  • Build a dynamic community of forward-thinkers, innovators, and business leaders.
  • Provide robust networking opportunities, enriching professional development experiences, and harnessing the collective spirit of DePaul University’s Kellstadt Graduate School of Business.

Our Leadership Team

A group of five students poses playfully in front of a christmas tree

Driving the mission of the Kellstadt Collective is a dynamic leadership team, spearheaded by Noah Wallin as President, Noelle Rotte (myself) as VP of Communications and Outreach, Ashlee Bakunowicz as VP of Professional Development and Treasurer, Claude Mueller as VP of Event Coordination, and Niara Tomlinson as VP of Digital Marketing (featured below from left to right).

Each of us has a different background, with some born and raised in the Chicago area, while others are new to this city. Our leadership team was brought together through a Kellstadt Career Managment Center Graduate Assistantship, and we are committed to revitalizing the Kellstadt Collective and enhancing the KGSB experience.

Inclusive Engagement: How to Get Involved

Getting involved in the Kellstadt Collective is easy! The best ways to stay up to date are by following us on online platforms such as LinkedIn, Instagram, and DeHub. Our events are open to every Kellstadt Graduate Business student, so we welcome you to join our community.

As I head into my second quarter of my MBA, I reflect on how the leadership team came together to re-energize the Kellstadt Collective community. I am looking forward to the many networking events and growth opportunities that will come from the Kellstadt Collective. I hope you are too.