The Tail of Autumn… and a Husky

Me and Coke

To enjoy the good weather while it lasts, my friend Ben and I visited the village Yellow Springs last weekend. We first went to Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve, where pets were not allowed, and then turned to John Bryan State Park to make it up to Coke the Husky.

Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve was located in a quiet small town with little sign of human habitation. The pity was that almost all trees there had already shed their leaves (if only we had come earlier!). Nonetheless, I enjoyed the serenity there.

Naked for winter
Into the woods

John Bryan State Park warmly welcomed Coke with a red-and-yellow carpet of autumn leaves. I want to say that we took Coke for a nice stroll, but it was actually the other way around since he was super excited about nature and kept pulling on the leash, so we were basically dragged in whichever direction he decided to take. But it was OK because he’s cute!

Along the way, Ben picked Coke up in his arms so I could take a close-up. Coke, who is two years old, apparently thought he was already too old for this and gave us an awkward look (OK we get it, you’re a big boy now), which was still SO CUTE in my eyes LOL.

“Dad NO it’s embarrassing REALLY”

After our trip, we treated ourselves to some hot food at Jiu Thai Asian Cafe. Yummy! : )

Northwest Chinese food

At last, just a photo of banana, nuts and Greek yogurt I recently made slipped in (Ohh and it might snow next week. Literally can’t wait).

Pistachios & Greek yogurt

Fisher Follies Fall Auction

Graduate students at the Fisher College of Business can join a variety of student organizations based on business areas, community service, and other common interests. One of the organizations I wanted to highlight this week is called Fisher Follies, a group that supports Fisher graduate students in need by raising funds through a variety of events during the academic year. More specifically, these funds are used to assist students if they run into financial hardships. Examples of this could include a plane ticket home for a family emergency or to assist with unexpected bills.

MHRM students supporting the cause

Last weekend I attended the Fisher Follies Fall Auction. A cocktail-style event held at the Blackwell Hotel that brought together students, faculty, and staff for a live and silent auction. Some of the items up for bid included a trip to Germany, sideline seats to the Michigan vs. Ohio State game, cooking and golf lessons as well as tickets to various events around Columbus. In my opinion, the best part of the evening was knowing that all the proceeds were going directly to the Fisher Follies Fund.

With the fast-paced environment we live in, it is easy for us to get caught up in our work, a job search, homework assignments, or other commitments we may have. Being apart of activities like this allows all of us in the graduate school to come together for a greater cause and support the Fisher community, which I believe is a valuable part of the Fisher College of Business experience.

“Remember that the happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more.” ―H. Jackson Brown Jr.

I look forward to taking part in the next Fisher Follies event, which will be a variety show that features a number of humorous skits, video, and musical numbers. Thank you for reading!

The GA Life

Ohio State Specialized Masters Programs all have Graduate Assistant (GA) opportunities available for students.  Many of those who contribute to the My Fisher Grad Life Blog are graduate assistants, including myself, so I figured it would be helpful to explain a little more about the GA position and what we do!

In my opinion, the GA position is the best opportunity for a graduate student to work on campus.  Graduate Assistants work 10 hours a week and are rewarded with a 50% tuition waiver and monthly stipend.  Everyone who applies for a graduate program is automatically considered for a GA position.

Graduate Assistants work as recruiting ambassadors, teaching assistants, or help out with special projects.  As a recruiting ambassador, I have had the opportunity to interact with students from across the world and talk to them about how great Ohio State’s Master of Accounting program is.

Promoting Ohio State Masters Programs in the Graduate Programs Office.

My main role as a recruitment GA is to coordinate visits for students who are invited to visit to the Master of Accounting program.  I talk with the prospective student and find a day that works well for them to visit.  I then make the necessary appointments with faculty, recruiting and admissions, and Office of Career Management so that the student gets to experience all the important aspects of Fisher.  On visit day, I will meet the prospective student, bring them to a class, take them out to lunch at the Blackwell Bistro, walk them to their appointments, and give a tour of the Fisher College of Business or the whole Ohio State University campus.

A Student Recruitment Lunch at the Blackwell

Aside from coordinating visits, I help manage our MAcc email box and answer questions daily from interested students.  I also speak to potential students over the phone or during walk-in visits about the MAcc program.  Being a combined BSBA/MAcc student, I am the “go to” for information about getting a combined undergraduate/graduate degree for The Ohio State University undergraduate accounting majors.

Working hard on Halloween

Other responsibilities I have as a recruitment GA involve helping with applicant relationship management in our Salesforce database and speaking to undergraduate classes or on panels about graduate school.  Working in the Graduate Programs Office at Fisher is great because you get to know people from the other programs Fisher offers, such as the MHRM, SMF, and MBA programs.  Everyone in the office is very helpful and friendly and make me enjoy coming to work every day!

With Audrey (MAcc GA) and Elise (MHRM GA) at a Buckeyes game

I hope that this blog has helped provide some insight into a great work and funding opportunity the Fisher College of Business provides select graduate school applicants.  I love The Ohio State University and being a part of the Fisher College of Business, so it’s only a bonus that I get paid to promote the school that has given me so much!  As always, please feel to reach out if you have questions about the MAcc program or life as a graduate student!

The Black Avengers

The day finally came…my first football game!

The Shoe

Although I knew nothing about football, my friend Ben did not give up on me and he was kind enough to invite me to a revenge game this past Saturday, where-SPOILER ALERT-Buckeyes returned home and fended off the Nebraska Cornhuskers!

My ticket!
The game is on!

The game was really tight the whole time, giving everyone in the audience a hard time. Fortunately, it was a happy ending!

With Ben’s detailed explanation during the game, my understanding of football grew from 0% to at least 60%-enough to pass a test if given one.(Thank you, Ben!)

OSU beanies & red-and-black dress code

What I enjoyed most in the game was the incredibly contagious Buckeye spirit! It was like we were all in this together… you just have to be there to feel it. Oh, how adorable Buckeyes are!

Me at halftime

I’m really, really glad The Ohio State Buckeyes won their game. This may sound cliche but, I am so proud to be a Buckeye. : )

(Hope we beat Michigan during Thanksgiving!)

A peek into KPMG MADA at Fisher

Our MAcc program here at The Ohio State University partnered with KPMG to develop the Master of Accounting with Data and Analytics (MADA) program. I interviewed a fellow MAcc student and friend, Sarah White, regarding her experience in the KPMG MADA program! 

During my undergraduate experience, I never really hung out with many other accounting majors. It is great to be part of such a close-knit community within Fisher!”

1. Can you briefly explain the process in which you were placed at Ohio State?

I originally heard about the KPMG MADA (Masters of Accounting with Data and Analytics) program at the summer leadership conference with KPMG. Knowing this was something that was extremely new and not so advertised yet, I knew I should jump on the application process. I first had to apply and have multiple rounds of interviews with KPMG before they decided whether or not I would be a part of the program, which would consist of 10 different schools across the nation. Around September or October of last year, KPMG informed me that I had been accepted to their program, specifically for Ohio State. After being accepted with KPMG, I applied directly to Fisher and heard back a few weeks later!

  1. What got you interested in the KPMG MADA program?

There was a brief presentation about the KPMG MADA program at the summer leadership conference I attended with KPMG. This program was described as a cutting-edge and award-winning program. It was enticing in the sense that it is an innovative program, implementing data analytics courses into a Masters of Accounting program. I had already planned to attend my undergraduate university (UNC Wilmington) for a one year MSA program, but I was interested to learn more about data science applied to accounting, and really felt like this program would better prepare me for my future position as an auditor.

I did as much research as I could, and leveraged my data analyst coworkers at my internship at the time (I was working in the finance department of a bank), and learned about the ways they used D&A tools in their day-to-day functions. Since my undergraduate course work was consumed by accounting, I felt being exposed to an extra focus within a Masters program would be vital for my success, especially with the rise of technology innovations sweeping the accounting world. I felt that this degree held a much higher value than an average Masters of Accounting degree, and I wanted to do anything I could to get into the program.

I also spent my entire undergraduate career with a job—working at least 20 hours a week to pay for expenses, so the idea of not having to take out extra student loans was ideal. I have always told myself that if an opportunity for funded education ever comes my way, I would take it, and I have not looked back!

  1. You, like 99% of the other KPMG MADA students, were placed at a new school in which you didn’t know anyone. How has the MAcc here at Ohio State helped you to foster new relationships?

Ever since the first day of orientation, Fisher has connected MAcc students by holding events, luncheons, and MAcc talks to expose students to one another. I really appreciated having nearly a week of orientation activities, because I really felt like it helped me bond with my classmates and meet new people within the program. I believe the intensive amount of group work within the program has also been great, because I have gotten to work with many of my classmates on cases and projects. I think the friendships I have made even go beyond what Fisher has done to create these relationships. The students here really seem to value these relationships, and we have all naturally gravitated towards each other!

  1. What is your favorite part about being in the KPMG MADA here at Ohio State?

I love knowing that at least 25 people in my classes are doing the exact same thing as I am, and we are all able to experience this together. We have already grown close since we see each other every day, and it has gotten me excited to start a career with the firm. With studying for the CPA exam, school can be very stressful, and it is great to be surrounded by supportive individuals who understand each others’ immediate goals. People are always my motivator – and they are the ones that keeps me showing up to work or class with a smile on my face!

First Semester, Second Session

Hi everyone!

Second session classes have just started and I can’t believe it is already time for us to schedule classes for next semester. As the other SMF Ambassador Tatenda wrote in his blog, time is really flying by. It feels like yesterday when I was sitting in Gerlach 305 for our first Financial Analysis and Valuation class. During this first half of the semester, I had the opportunity to meet my fellow classmates a little bit more, participate in several networking and career fair activities as well as have some fun attending a Beyoncé concert and Ohio State football game.

Ohio State Stadium
Beyonce at the Ohio Stadium (Aug 16th)
Fisher Graduate Latino Association at the Prospanica Conference in Milwaukee, WI

As an undergraduate, I had the opportunity to make it to a football game several times and I just love the atmosphere while at the stadium. As a graduate student with more loaded schoolwork and less availability over the weekends, I wasn’t really planning on going to the stadium this semester. However, a couple of weeks ago, Tatenda was kind enough to invite me and some of his friends to the OSU vs. Minnesota football game. I had forgotten how much I enjoyed being at the stadium and experience a football game.

I LOVE the school spirit here at Ohio State, especially when it comes to sports!

When I first arrived to Ohio four years ago, one of the things that impressed me the most about Ohio State folks was their love for football and college sports. People really get into it when it comes to college football and I can certainly understand why. Initially I had no idea what was going on, or even how the scoring system worked. Coming from a country (Peru) where soccer is the most popular sport, I really had no chance to learn about football when I was growing up. However, people from my tennis team and friends in general were really patient explaining me the rules to help me become a master of football rules. Totally kidding—I’m far from being an expert, but hey, I do understand enough to have fun while watching! 🙂

The marching band also had an astonishing performance during halftime.

As second session continues, I look forward to more learning experiences in and outside the classroom, and sharing those with all of you!

Go Bucks!

View of the Fisher Courtyard

SMF Night Out

The past two to two and half months have been all about work for SMF students. We’ve already completed the majority of our core classes, engaged in multiple team projects, and written three final exams. To cut the long story short, SMF students have been very busy. They say, however, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” So to maintain a healthy balance between work and leisure, members of the SMF Council organized a dinner for the the class. The idea was to facilitate an informal setting for students and faculty to interact with each other whilst enjoying something that almost everyone loves (especially me)—food.

My excitement was sky high as we arrived at Hong Kong House, which is about 20 minutes from campus. I was looking forward to exploring Asian cuisine so you can imagine how anxious I was to dig in when the waitress was laying down our dishes.

Many thanks to the SMF Council for organizing the dinner. The food was absolutely amazing and the company was even better. Our night out was perfectly timed because it gave us the opportunity to reflect on the previous session of classes and to build stronger bonds with each other and our faculty members. As you continue to consider the many grad school options you have, be confident that although The Ohio State University is a massive school, there is still plenty of room for you to build meaning friendships, and to learn about different cultural norms and practices.

 

Recruiting Season is Here

Something a lot of students stress about while in school is finding a job and I am here to tell you it can be done! The MAcc program here at OSU does a lot to help students have the best opportunity to find the job they want. I asked fellow MAcc student Cinara about her experience during recruiting season in the MAcc program and here are her responses:

Explain a little how the recruiting process work in the MAcc program.

The recruiting process in the MAcc program is very easy if you are pursuing a career in public accounting. There are also many opportunities to pursue a career in industry or government, but I did not pursue them. During the first seven weeks of the semester, you will have the opportunity to meet with national and regional firms. It’s important to attend all of the events and to meet as many people as you can. During the networking period, you will work on finalizing your resume and submitting applications. Most first round interviews are on campus and subsequent ones can be on campus, at the employer’s office, or virtual. From the first interview to receiving an offer, the entire process takes about 2–3 weeks. Most people receive offers around mid-October

How did you manage classes and interviews?

View of a recruiting event on campus

Though it is manageable, I would not underestimate the time that is consumed by the recruitment process. Remember that this will hopefully result in a job, so it takes a lot of time and effort. The first seven weeks will be the busiest between classes and recruitment/networking events, so try to keep your schedule light. I took four classes during the first seven weeks and five classes during the second seven-week session. Professors are also pretty flexible, but you should notify them immediately if there are scheduling conflicts.

What are your results from the recruiting season?

I will be at Deloitte as an Audit and Assurance Assistant in Cleveland!

What advice do you have for future MAcc students who will be going through recruiting?

  • Make sure the decision makers (recruiters, HR, managers, partners, etc.) know your name and that you stand out in some way among your peers. 
  • Ask a lot of questions about the firms so you understand their values and culture.
  • Have your resume reviewed by two to three people.
  • Schedule a mock interview at the Office of Career Management.
  • Find time to also enjoy your time in Columbus and on campus!

Turning Theory into Practice

Picture twelve teams, eight judges, two rounds of competition, all in search of one solution—what do you have? The Fisher College of Business MHRM Internal Case Competition! Every October, students form teams to compete against one another to solve an HR-related business problem. While this is a requirement for graduation of the MHRM program, this event allows first- and second-year students to take what they have learned in the classroom and apply it in a real-world context.

Presentation of the Case

This event was sponsored by PepsiCo, who presented us with an introduction to their organization, supply chain operations, and the competitions business case at 8 am on Friday. The business case was related to a current proposal the company is working on for their plant operations. It was each team’s responsibility to decide whether or not PepsiCo should add a new role to their organization structure. This decision had to take in consideration the following: change management strategy, organizational design, training and development opportunities, and financial implications.

 Once the case was revealed, the teams had about 30 minutes for Q&A. From then on, the competition had begun they had 24 hours to create their own unique solution for the case. During this 24-hour period, the teams worked hard and long into the night in breakout rooms brainstorming and discussing potential solutions. We were fortunate enough to have the second-year students who coordinated the event feed us and deliver us snacks throughout this period.

Team 2 hard at work
Grab-bag of snacks!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Early the next morning, each team returned to present their solutions in front of a panel of PepsiCo and industry professionals. To keep things fair, no one knew what time they were going to present until the morning of so each team had to arrive equally prepared. There were two rounds of presentations, the first round divided all the teams into three separate groups, essentially to compete against one another to make it to the final round. Those who were declared the best in each group then moved on to present their solution in front of the entire class, a handful of professors, and a panel of judges. After the final presentations were delivered, the winners were declared and there was a networking opportunity following the event with all the judges.

Having competed in this year’s case myself, I can definitely say it was one of the most challenging yet exciting events of the semester thus far! I’m happy to announce that my team won the case competition and now has the opportunity to participate in the External Case Competition that is held in the spring. The top three final teams are also invited to have lunch with the Dean of the College of Business.

My Awesome Team!

Not only was my team able to take what we learned in the classroom and apply it to this case but allowed us to practice our creativity, critical thinking, and presentation skills. Truly simulating what the atmosphere would be like if a manager came to you in the workplace and needed a problem solved in a short timeframe. Participating in case competition also gave us the opportunity to implement and experiment with new ideas that we may have been otherwise afraid to apply in a classroom setting. We were able to treat it as a learning experience rather than a grade.

Additionally, being questioned, critiqued by and given feedback from actual leaders in industry only made it a more valuable experience. I would highly recommend students of all ages to go outside of the classroom and get involved in professional development opportunities such as case competitions. No matter the outcome, it will be a new experience, a chance to network with others, further develop your professional skills and is a great way to build your resume. As always, thank you for reading!

Celebrating National Diversity Day

National Diversity Day is a day to celebrate and embrace who we are, despite our differences, no matter what race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, nationality, or disability. A day to reflect on and learn about different cultures and ideologies. A day to vow acceptance and tolerance. A day to consciously address these areas at educational and religious institutions, as well as in the workplace and at home. National Diversity day is an annual event on the first Friday in October (Diversity Awareness Month). This year, National Diversity Day was October 5, 2018.

Stephanie Hightower, President and CEO of Columbus Urban League

The Fisher Graduate Women in Business and Black MBA Association collaborated together to invite Stephanie Hightower, President and CEO of Columbus Urban League, to speak and discuss with Fisher students about her journey and experience as a minority woman in the business world. This took place in the Mason Rotunda. Over dinner, students had the opportunity to ask questions and engage in a discussion with Stephanie over issues that took place in the workplace, home, social events…etc. Overall, it was such a successful event, and we hope to continue having such events. A big thank you to the Office of Diversity and Inclusion for sponsoring this event!

Enjoying dinner from Sweet Carrot
Fisher students engage in a discussion with Stephanie Hightower

FGWIB and BMBAA Leadership Committee with Stephanie Hightower