Posts filed under 'Full Time MBA'

And so it begins.. Oh wait, it began three weeks back!

 

Belay On

Belay On

 

Before I begin telling you about my experiences in the last 1 week at Fisher, I definitely would like to share some activities( Read super cool) which we did during our Pre-term program.Yeah,you read it right. PRE-TERM. At Fisher,we believe in truly in our motto ” Go Beyond”. The pre term program exposed us to various facets of the Fisher MBA- Career Management, Core courses, Leadership development opportunities, and of course, the fun ” team” exercise at Summit Vision. This was one such experience wherein you get into it with one set of expectations and you come out with a totally different set of perspectives. It helped us get out of our comfort zone, I mean literally. If you had not earlier considered dangling from a beam 50 feet above the ground as a part of your comfort zone, you would consider reframing it now.It helped us trust our team mates who were acting as the ‘belayers’ and believe me, the word ‘trust’ was definitelyredefined in my mind.During the course of 4 hours, we learned from each other’s mistakes, put aside our individual goals and collaborated as a team to see the task through the finish line. I think we cherished the outing even more because it provided us a much needed break in our hectic schedule.On a side note, I used to think my pre MBA schedule was jam packed and hectic. I am laughing at that thought now.I will leave you at that.


First Year MBAs Connecting with Second Years

One of the aspects of coming to the Fisher MBA program most of us were worried about to some degree was connecting with our fellow first year MBA classmates. Through almost two weeks of orientation, Summit Vision (I assume), getting together after class and even Facebook of all things, that turned out to be one of the easier parts even for us who aren’t the most naturally social people in the world. But one of the more important aspects you don’t hear about is connecting with the second years. They have experience, knowledge and, most importantly for getting a job and not ending up sleeping on the streets in gargantuan debt after graduation, connections! And it turns out, connecting with them was just as easy.

Events with second years started even before pre-term at Fisher started in August. There were Fisher Social Chair events hosted by second years during the summer including a World Cup Final watch party. I was studying for the presumably Satan inspired bar exam at the time in New Jersey, so I couldn’t attend, but heard only great things. The night before pre-term started, there was another social event to get to know second years who had participated in Pelotonia in Columbus.

Through Facebook, they also invited anybody interested in participating in pickup sports to come play basketball and soccer with them when we hadn’t even really had an opportunity to meet us. A few first years went to the ARC and played basketball, even some of us (me!) who have the athletic ability of a fence post. I may have gotten destroyed by a girl in basketball, but that’s beside the point. She was an NCAA athlete shut up. I played soccer with different second years as well and, if anything, that was an even more inclusive atmosphere. Everybody makes an effort to get to know you and remembers you later. It’s the #FisherFamily coming together, obviously.

And of course, there are the tailgates for the OSU football games even if the team completely forgets to block and loses to middling Virginia Tech teams. Yes, I’m bitter. But we tailgated all afternoon at Fisher Commons before the 8:00 game at Ohio Stadium. There were games, hamburgers, hot dogs, brats and, of course, there was walking through cornfields. That last part was just implied but I wanted to make sure you guys out there knew. Point is, the second years hosted it and made us feel like we were really part of the class.

Walking to the Stadium after tailgating at Fisher Commons!

Walking to the Stadium after tailgating at Fisher Commons!

There is also the sterling 2nd year buddy program, as Danielle Black went in depth on. My buddy couldn’t attend as he was getting married during that mixer so I guess he has his priorities straight.

The biggest event was the 6 hour, North High Street bar crawl at the end of pre-term. The Social Chair led us on a true bonding experience with second years as well as our fellow classmates that was truly memorable and ended, expectedly, in a Taco Bell. Fun times had by all. There were also smaller happy hours held by clubs and associations at Fisher. We also later went out and sang karaoke. Thankfully, me singing Ignition (Remix) by R. Kelly does not have video evidence I’m aware of.

Fisher Karaoke!

Fisher Karaoke!

You may get destroyed by a girl in basketball in front of the second years, may not remember all their names and may not feel comfortable asking them questions about Fisher any time one pops into your head, but I promise they’re all there to help you out and are happy to. It’s really one of the most welcoming atmospheres I’ve ever been in. Just put yourself out there and you’ll have one of the best times of your life. It’s only September, and I already am. Some of them are even playing on the first year intramural soccer teams!


Shredded Wheat

Shredded Wheat

An eleven year-old beta model of my current form once walked into a Barnes & Noble on a mission.  The chameleon currently known as Diddy (I think) had just released his “No Way Out” CD and I was absolutely going to have it.  For the week since its release I had developed this quixotic vision of myself walking into my suburban swim club with swagger on a trillion.  I would pull up right next to the 6th grade girls with their newly minted braces and high pitched screams.  With confidence and poise, I’d pop that bad boy into my no-skip Sony Discman and elevate my game from “guy whose only other CD is Meredith Brooks” to “can I have your AIM handle?” Away Message: BOSS.

A few case facts:
I’m 11.
The FCC frowns on selling foul language and Biggie Smalls dirge tracks to minors.
My parents might as well have worked for the FCC.

So here you go, fellow classmates.  I give to you a microcosm of what we’re all coming up against, wrapped nicely in a format that we are quickly becoming versed in.  What does Elliott do to rise to the occasion? It’s a comedy that reflects a scenario that we will find ourselves in quite a bit over the next two years at Fisher.  As we begin to consider summer internship opportunities, we’re stomaching the self-help books, empowerment seminars, and hole-punching resume one-on-ones in order to compose the most compelling pictures of ourselves.  It’s a rough process and, much like a baby-faced Elliott in pursuit of a CD eulogizing hard knocks, we too face some serious challenges. So let’s get to work.

Step one – Identify the target.

At the time there appeared to be two types of B&N employees, the ex-librarians and the college kids.  You’d think I’d have scoped the college kid, but not that time.  That trip called for knitted-cat-sweater lady.

Step two – Stack the deck.

For those of you who remember, that particular Diddy CD was famous for the “I’ll Be Missing You” track featuring Sting. (I could devote an entire blog on how this man refuses to age)  It just so happens that Sting collections were widely available and devoid of any inappropriate labeling.  I grabbed two random Sting CDs in addition to my Diddy purchase.

Step three – Sell it like it’s on fire.

I approached the counter with the two Sting CDs sandwiching Diddy.  I then starting talking my pre-pubescent head off about how much my mom loved Sting and how she could not wait for me to bring home these collections.  When the associate saw the Diddy CD, she paused and I that’s when I laid on the charm.  “Track 16 is the latest collaboration with Sting.  You’ve probably heard it on the radio? My mom loves it. I’m not sure why it’s labeled this way as it’s an acappella group.  Not like anybody singing with Sting would be terrible, right?”

Step four – Reflect.

Of course this lady does not sell me a CD called “Puff Daddy and the Family – No Way Out”.   You’d be taking a Zamboni machine to all nine circles of Dante’s Hell before Denim Dress McGee sells songs titled “Young G’s” and “All About the Benjamins” to an 11 year-old.

The point is this, my friends: Fisher will not be easy.  Even the best laid plans will fail at times.  We are all going to get chewed up because we are wheat: full of potential, well matured, and raw.  Hopefully we’ll look back and consider our previous ignorance with a higher perspective.  I would also submit that if we don’t get our collective egos rocked a few times by this program, then we might as well get our money back and spend it on late fees at the public library.  Fisher is a top-tier program because they do what others can’t.  They make successful people more successful.  I look forward to the process, and the late nights, and the morass of classes, interviews, failures, and victories.  I expect Fisher to give me the tools to evolve into something greater than the sum of my parts.  I also expect to pick up a few bad habits along the way.  Most of all I look forward to working with each of you.

I’ll end my first post in the fashion which I will end every post; with a request.

Be kind to somebody today.  It makes a difference.

E


Welcome Fisher MBA Class of 2016

Fisher Campus

It was a warm morning. Not too uncomfortable, although it left little doubt that the afternoon would be quite hot. As if I didn’t have enough on my mind already while making my way across the Fisher campus, I now had to brood over the efficiency of the off-brand antiperspirant I was wearing. Coming up to Schoenbaum Hall,  I took one last glance at the Pre-Term schedule I had printed out the night before to make sure I was in the right place, heaved one last heavy breath, and entered the building.

The door opened into a small corridor brimming with well-dressed men and women, acquainting and socializing, demonstrating their varied levels of networking competence. Striding across the corridor, from handshake to handshake, I felt as if my mind was hosting a potluck attended by two dozen different versions of myself, each bringing a different emotion. I was excited; I was nervous. I was confident; I was diffident. I was calm; I was frantic.

An administrator directed us through two sets of doors leading into a large lecture hall with stadium seating. I found a seat and continued to converse with my neighbors, trying desperately to remember their names without looking at their name tags. The murmuring in the halls quieted down as the administrator stepped forth once again and, to a roaring applause, officially welcomed the Fisher MBA Class of 2016 to the Pre-Term Orientation.

What transpired over the following week and a half of orientation is far too much to detail in just one blog post, but in summary, it was truly an uplifting and apprehension-slaying event. It was an exciting blend of macro and micro insights into the adventure my class and I are about to begin. Between meeting my classmates, getting assigned my cohort (shout out to Team 11!), learning about all the student groups and opportunities, lectures from such distinguished guests as the CEO of Sherwin-Williams, Christopher Connor, and activities such as team-building exercises at Summit Vision – which was far more enjoyable and of practical use than my skeptical mind expected – orientation provided an excellent introduction to this new chapter in my life.

I’ve come a long way to get here (more on that in another post). As bumpy as the road was at times, I’m sure ahead it will be even more long and winding. Great changes come prepackaged with great uncertainty. I might not be venturing into the last frontier, but I am running full-speed into my own unknown with nothing but drive and optimism providing bright but limited lighting. But as far as I can tell, I couldn’t ask for better resources to help guide me along the way than those which I have found at the Fisher College of Business at THE Ohio State University.


My happy move-in!

Well, the student year has already started, I’m all settled in but I still remember the painful process of researching housing options. Isn’t that crazy that you have to fight for the apartment you have never seen 5-6 months in advance?! Well, I got lucky to find my apartment and that was the best decision I could have made. I live in Neil Building; it’s student residential hall, located in South Campus. I absolutely love my place for the following reasons.

2014-08-05 12.15.00

Firstly, my apartment is fully furnished!!! Yes!! Can you imagine a tiny girl moving or assembling the furniture alone?! I wouldn’t be able to do that, that’s why my main search criteria was to find a furnished place. The studio has everything that person may need: desk, drawers, closet, shelves, bed and fully equipped kitchen. The only thing you need for move-in process is to move in with your luggage, that’s it!

Secondly, there is a huge cafeteria Marketplace on the first floor of the building. They have numerous eating options, starting from salads and sandwiches and ending with pasta and soups! Btw, their broccoli and cheese soup is amazing! You may want to check it out! What I like the most is that residents of Neil Building have separate entrance to the café; you have to swipe your BuckID and you are already there. When it rains on weekend and I don’t feel like going out, I can just go down and use the magic door to access the food paradise.

Thirdly, the staff at Neil Building is very helpful and friendly. For example, when I moved in, I had the problem with air-conditioning system. I filled in the report online and my issue was solved the next day. So they are very quick to react on residents’ needs. I also like the fact that I don’t have to worry about being at home when my package arrives, because reception receives all the packages and then you get an email saying that your package is ready for pick-up! It makes my life much easier because I shop online a lot!

Finally, it’s great in terms of location. I’m 10 minute walk to Thompson Library and RPAC and about 15-20 minute walk to Fisher! That’s a good point, as you can’t be late to classes, and my experience of using bus wasn’t good. I took the bus once, but because of the traffic I was late to the class! So if you plan to use public transport, especially in the rainy weather, plan additional 10 minutes for the trip or, as in my case, rely on yourself and walk to the campus!

Neil Building is good choice for those who want to avoid headache of buying/ selling furniture, mostly for international students who are moving to Columbus for the first time. It’s a bit more expensive than off-campus housing but, remember, there is no free lunch in this world!


The Buddy Program

This year the Fisher MBA has a new program: The Buddy Program.  This program was spear-headed by the Class of 2015, who felt it would be beneficial to the incoming first year class to have a second year mentor – someone to ask where the quiet study room is (in the basement, across from the lockers), or where the best place to grab lunch is (the verdict is still out), or to ask questions about major classes, clubs, conferences, and the internship search.

But the Buddy Program is also about friendship.  “We want you all to feel included,” Edwin, a second year leadership and organizational behavior major said. “We want you to be part of the program and help you in any way we can.”  Edwin’s attitude has been echoed in the actions of every second year I have met – and I’ve met the majority of them.  The second years have made a point to be involved in our orientation and to invite us to club and social events.  At Fisher, you don’t come in with 120 friends, you come in with 240.

The first Buddy Program event of the year was this past Friday.  Everyone who signed up for the Buddy Program met at the Varsity Club.  My buddy, Doris, e-mailed me before the event to introduce herself and to reassure me that she would be at the event.  When I got to the Varsity Club, it was packed with MBA’s.

“We didn’t know how many people would show up,” I overheard someone say.  A lot. A lot showed up.  In fact, so many first years signed up for the program that several second years, Doris included, had two first year buddies.  I managed to find Doris and Coralia, another first year, and we talked about our backgrounds, potential majors and career paths, and Doris’s insights on her two (Yes, two.  Did I mention that my buddy is brilliant?) summer internships for what felt like five minutes, but was really almost an hour and a half.  We left the event with plans to meet for lunch, and word on the street is that there might be a second Buddy event later this semester.

To say the Buddy Program is a success would be an understatement, and although this is a new program, I think it’s one my class, and the classes that come after us, will continue.

 

 


Looking Back On My Time At Fisher

Where have the past two years gone? I still remember sitting through orientation at the Blackwell and listening to various administrators and faculty members telling students that their time in the MBA program would fly by. I remember even more vividly thinking to myself that they were full of it.

A few weeks later, during my stats, finance, and accounting classes, I recall thinking that the program might never end.

Now, two years later, I realize that they were absolutely correct. The full-time MBA program flew by.

As a recent graduate of the MBA program at Fisher I’d like use my last blog post as an opportunity to reflect back on my experiences here as a student. Here’s a glimpse into what I have loved and enjoyed about being a Buckeye MBA.

  1. Friendships – Some people refer to this as “networking” – another lame business buzzword. It’s almost as ridiculous as leverage and core competencies. Real “networking” is being a good human, looking out for others, and making friendships that last a lifetime. If those friendships help you in your career progression, great! If not, you’ve made a great friend with whom you can share your joys and sorrows as you go through life. The friendships that I have made with many of my classmates are real, authentic, and don’t include a bogus 60 second elevator pitch. I look forward to staying in touch with my classmates over the years. I feel indebted to them because they have helped me grow and become a better person.
  2. Development – During my time at Fisher I have had the chance to learn and grow in so many ways. Classes, case studies, interviews, guest speakers, job offer negotiations, and many other aspects of business school have given me a greater understanding of myself and what I can become. Business school is a grind which seems to break you down the first year and build you back up the second. The process is incredibly challenging but worth every minute, even when you are awake at 2:45 in the morning studying for a final.
  3. Community – This is what the Fisher College of Business is all about. When I was analyzing business schools to attend I spoke with many different people from Fisher. I talked to alumni, admissions staff, current students, and associate deans. All of them kept mentioning the word community throughout our conversations. Now I know what they mean. Fisher isn’t just a place to attend school and gain a piece of paper. There are plenty of places to do that. Fisher is a community of diverse individuals all striving for excellence. Not only is everyone welcome within the community but others help and encourage everyone to succeed. Successes are celebrated and accomplishments recognized. Students help one another succeed by working together to prepare for exams, negotiate job offers, analyze career opportunities, etc. Professors and administrators offer their wealth of knowledge and experience to students and alumni.

To summarize, Fisher has been an incredible experience and I am grateful I decided to attend school at The Ohio State University. Good people. Great education. Incredible community. I’ll never forget my time at Fisher! It’s been life changing!


Jessica Reynolds, MBA

I GRADUATED!

This past weekend was such a mix of emotions, family, friends, graduation celebrations — and lots of food and good times. Maybe a little bit too much food and good times, but hey, it was graduation!

Reynolds  family at graduation!

Reynolds family at graduation!

On Saturday, May 3rd, the Fisher College of Business held its “hooding ceremony” for all graduates. It was a great ceremony, and perfect for family, friends and loved ones to attend. The hooding ceremony (or pre-commencement) occurred at Mershon Auditorium, and is the first step of graduation weekend. All Fisher master students are encouraged to attend the intimate ceremony, and it’s a great opportunity for pictures. What can I say? I am a sucker for capturing all of the great memories. :)

As an undergraduate of OSU, I attended the big graduation in The ‘Shoe. Because the school was still on quarters, I graduated in the month of June. Personally, I thought it was HOT and LONG. However, it is a cool experience for those that have never attended – and now graduation is in May, so it is significantly cooler. If you chose not to attend the OSU graduation on Sunday, you can pick up your diploma the following week.

jr and kn - hugging - complressed

One of my best MBA buddies – Kelly!

For the Fisher pre-commencement/hooding ceremony, a few speeches were given, and then graduates for each program were called by name. You walk across the stage and a professor puts the Masters’ hood around you neck. Lucky for business students, it’s the beautiful color of drab (we all know it wasn’t a marketer that came up with THAT name!). At the end they play a slideshow (only part where I got slightly choked-up), and a brief reception is held after. It was a great time, and I was very happy that my parents and best friend were able to attend.

Me and the beautiful Melissa!

Me and the beautiful Melissa!

So, I am closing the MBA chapter of my life, and starting my journey as a young professional. I will begin my career at Alliance Data in a few months, and can’t wait to see what happens next. Entering this program was one of the best decisions I have ever made – and the laughs, tears, struggles and TONS of learning were absolutely worth it. I know that I am going to miss my business school friends that are moving across the country like crazy, but am so proud of my entire class and all our accomplishments. And, this means I have lots of people to visit!

I have made best friend, found mentors and created relationships that will last forever. None of this would have been possible without the support of my family, friends, everyone in the GPO and the Office of Career Management — and for that, I am extremely grateful.


Still feels a little weird to consider myself a Master of Business – but hey, that’s what my degree says. :)


Fun at the Fisher Scramble

One of the greatest games ever invented is golf. There are a building2number of cheesy quotes from either Ben Hogan, Jack Nicklaus, or Happy Gilmore once said in reference to the game. Any way you look at it, golf is the best frustrating game out there. Many of us experienced this last week at the 2014 Fisher Golf Scramble at the Golf Club of Dublin.

I love playing golf and have enjoyed the game for most of my life. For this reason, I was excited to hear that there would be a fun event for students to get together and hit some balls around the course. For me, this would be my third time playing golf since the beginning of business school (I know, where are my priorities?).

One of the best parts of the day was that the weather cooperated for the first time this year. The course was in great shape and the sun was shining. Perfect conditions for golf!

My team started off pretty well going birdie birdie on the first two holes. That’s when things changed, sort of. We double bogeyed the next hole, which was a par 3. I guess I could finish this post there because that’s about the time when you want to walk off the course in a scramble. Anyway, we kept playing and had a great time. Some how, even with a double bogey and a bogey, we came in at four under par.

One of the most memorable moments of the day was when two MBA students (who shall remain nameless) “accidentally” parked their golf cart on the green while they were putting. Needless to say, the marshal wasn’t too happy when he gave them a stern warning.

After the round everyone gathered together for awards and a nice meal. It was fun to relax and enjoy golf with friends and classmates as we wind down our time here at Fisher.


Marketing is more than just sexy TV ads…

When the AMP (Association of Marketing Professionals) executive team got together at the beginning of the school year, we outlined some of the important topics that we wanted to be a part of our AMP Engagement Series.  As we all discussed our internship experiences, one common challenge we all faced was leveraging large amounts of consumer data (whether it’s IRI/Nielsen or other secondary research) to help shape our projects and recommendations.  As a result, the AMP executive team organized a “Working with Data” engagement series lunch for AMP members.  We were very fortunate to have the privilege of welcoming Sarah Bader and John Lewis from the Scotts Miracle-Gro Team to speak about key market research/data terminology and to talk about ways to leverage data in order to find consumer insights and/or help direct business decisions.

John Lewis and Sarah Bader present to a group of 1st and 2nd year Marketing MBAs.

My favorite part of the lunch discussion was the mini case study we did at the end.  The objective of the case study was to look at secondary data and make recommendations on what markets Scotts Outdoor Cleaner should advertise in.  The data outlined important geographical areas and multiple metrics that we needed to analyze in order to provide our recommendations.  Everybody had a great discussion on what markets they thought Scotts should advertise in and supported those recommendations through the data provided!

As an executive leader in AMP, I wanted to thank Sarah and John for all the work they put into this presentation and case study!  We are extremely lucky to have such great relationships with companies like Scotts who are always willing to come in and talk with current Fisher MBA students!


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