… even though we are currently #1 in football! Go Buckeyes!
At Fisher, blending in with the scenery is really not an option. The faculty, staff, and other students make it virtually impossible to be a number, which is a GOOD thing. From day one, when I walked into the Graduate Programs Office, people knew my name… scary.
Actually, let me take you back to before day 1. Applying to Fisher was a new experience for me. I had previously applied for Law School and filled out applications for other business schools, but Fisher’s stood out because I met David Smith – if you don’t know him, get to know him – at a Business School fair in Seoul. Right away, he was BEYOND helpful. As previously mentioned, I do NOT have a business background, so I was always on the fence about what I could add to a class of business students. David helped me to see my fit and did a great job advocating for Fisher – in fact, the other schools I looked at that day did not even hold a candle to his pitch. I mentioned that I went to Vanderbilt, and right away he told me to email President Gee, whom I have met on a few occasions back at Vanderbilt. (Side note -when I emailed Dr. Gee, he DID get back to me immediately, and he continues to respond every time since the first email.) Leaving the fair that night, I felt more confident than ever that I should apply.
Throughout the entire application process, I felt that I could reach out to Mr. Smith and others at Fisher – probably a little TOO much… sorry. When decision time came, and I was not able to visit my top two schools, Mr. Smith and others in the office put me in contact with students, professors, and others in Career Management to help me decide. So even though I was thousands of miles away, I was really just a phone call from someone at school who went out of their way to help me. While my experience may not be what everyone had, I am VERY thankful that I was not just a number (and I would encourage ALL future applicants to take advantage of the resources available in their search).
So, after that LONG sidetrack – whoops – I’ll get back to my topic: not just a number. In undergrad, I pretty much wanted to blend in with the class. I was involved, but I definitely did NOT go above and beyond. However, at Fisher, it is kind of the norm to be heavily involved. While we are a smaller business school, we are a part of a MASSIVE institution with many opportunities available. Learning about these opportunities was a bit overwhelming at Fisher Advantage, but after a week long of information sessions, with pizza of course, organization involvement has picked up tremendously… ie. my free lunch schedule is now filled up with meetings, but I’m not complaining.
Furthermore, every time I walk around Fisher or really around the entire campus of Ohio State, I run into people who I know, and who know me. It is oddly a “small world” here. I cannot even jam out at Kroger without being spotted by a classmate or two. Yes, I definitely jam out whilst grocery shopping. Fellow classmates are not the only ones who make blending in impossible. The faculty and staff make it a point to know who you are and what you are interested. Seriously, speak to anyone in Career Management, and chances are they know who you are and what types of jobs and internships you are looking for. They are ON the ball. It’s the same in the Graduate Programs Office, and I am sure other offices – though I haven’t really ventured too far out of Gerlach. Teachers also call on you in class. So far, I have not been cold called – or as Professor Ankerman likes to call it “impromptu” moments, but I know my time is coming.
Being in this setting makes me want to participate more. Since you cannot blend in – and really who wants to “blend in” with the opportunities available here – stand out. Take advantage of the opportunities – email that teacher or classmate who you want to know better or who may be a great networking potential. Join the group that is different from what you normally do – hello, I am joining finance (which if you talked to me last year, you would probably laugh at that thought). Fisher is an environment that helps the you be an individual who has the best resources to succeed in the way you want. Not being a number might just be the best thing about Fisher – even though our rankings are CONSISTENTLY soaring.