Archive for February, 2012

Book Review – Eating Your Way Across Ohio

Over Christmas break, I came across a neat new book.  Karen Patterson, a Southern Ohio Author, has recent published “Eating Your Way Across Ohio – 101 Must Places to Eat”.  In this, Patterson reviews restaurants across the state that are not chain restaurants or fast food.  What a great book; I mean who doesn’t like to eat?  This book has pictures of yummy food, pricing, locations, and reviews of 101 places to eat.  With the ease of technology these days, I know it’s easier to find a review online but this hardcover book is a great resource for those looking for a great new place to dine.

With final exams, presentations, and papers right around the corner, take some time for a road trip.  Grab some friends, flip through the book and find a location you want to try.  My personal favorite in the book is the Old Canal Smokehouse, located in Chillicothe (Unfortunately, it is closed for the time being while it’s being remodeled due to a recent fire.)  Another good place that is reviewed is the Der Dutchman Restaurant, located right outside of Columbus in Plain City.

Amazon has the book available here: http://www.amazon.com/Eating-Your-Way-Across-Ohio/dp/1935001833/ref=sr_1_15?ie=UTF8&qid=1330363965&sr=8-15

Feel free to share what some of your favorite restaurants are in Ohio.


Another typical (delightful) week in Fisher MAcc

 

Post-Valentine's Day potluck!

It’s been another awesome week in the MAcc program! We had a potluck on Sunday (the excuse for which was a Post-Valentine’s Day gathering, but we really just wanted to eat more food together). Once again, we had an impressive variety of amazing dishes! On Tuesday, Holly Paul, the US Recruiting Leader for PwC, spoke on campus. She shared fascinating experiences and gave excellent advice on personal branding. On Friday, a few of us attended a research workshop (weekly presentations of various papers with professors and PhD students). As usual, I was so impressed by the intellectual conversation and thoughtful comments.

Then I completed my last Volunteer Income Tax Assistance shift. I have learned so much from this program and have had such wonderful clients! I loved having built-in time to work with other MAcc students on real-world applications, and we had so much fun!

I am constantly being given some reason to smile or laugh. It may be a comment made by a professor or someone in the Graduate Programs Office, or a comment from a classmate after class or passing in the hallway. Such little things add up to make delightful days and weeks!


Extending Your Offer

I didn’t want to say anything until I had it in writing, but I’ve been extended again at OCLC in my HR Intern role.  What was supposed to be ten weeks, has turned into a full year.

Even though I’ll be moving to DC at the end of March (blog to follow), the miracles of modern technology and the graciousness of my employer are allowing me to work remotely for OCLC until June.

Thanks to Citrix, a remote desktop application, I can access my work hard drive from anywhere using my security token, an internet connection and my laptop.  I can work from anywhere essentially.

Working only one day a week in the office, and remotely the rest of the time, has presented an interesting challenge this quarter.  My day in the office is when I get to do all the physical things like put up marketing, take face to face meetings and coordinate with my manager.  Once I move, I will be coordinating with my manager over the phone and will return to Columbus twice a month or so, for a few days or so at a time, and work in the office.  I’ll probably put in more days in the office AFTER I leave than I have this quarter.  It has been a challenge, but very rewarding at the same time.

OCLC has been an incredible experience and when my 10 weeks were up, I didn’t want to leave.  I wanted to see through some of the projects that could not be pushed through during that time period and I wanted to work on some of the projects that were coming up in the pipeline.  So I asked to stay.  Simple as that.  Being that the position was local, I had the opportunity to do so.  I cut back my hours (boy did that first part-time paycheck shock!), and scheduled my work week with help from my managers so it would fit with my class schedule.

The HR Intern position for this year is actually structured so the intern will stay on for the fall semester on a part-time basis.  And don’t worry, if you’re a candidate or the future intern, don’t worry. I WILL leave before you start.

My advice to first years who will be starting their summer internships in a few short months is this: I recommend you do the same if you can.  Even if the position is not local, you could possibly work remotely.  It’s great experience, looks wonderful on your resume, and a regular paycheck never hurt, even if diminished.  It also doesn’t hurt to ask.

Good luck to all the first year MLHR candidates!


We Love You – So Come Enroll!

Valentine’s Day was last week, and I hope you all had a wonderful time.  Whether you went to dinner with a special someone, received a beautiful bouquet of flowers, or treated it like any other ordinary day, I hope you had a great time.  Here at Ohio State, we love you, and we’d love to have you look into the Fisher MAcc program.  If none of my previous posts have convinced you to apply yet, I’m hoping this will.  Because today I want to just share with you how much Ohio State loves each of us, and highlight one professor in particular.

First of all, check out this video that Dr. Gee sent out to all of us.  How many universities can claim such an awesome video, sent on just one day just because?  Sure, many places have recruitment videos and the like that are similar to this, but this was for students already enrolled.  And check out how involved Dr. Gee is in all of it!  How cool is that!?  Yeah, Ohio State loves us.

Now, I said there was one professor in particular I wanted to talk about.  If you apply, are accepted, and come join the Fisher MAcc program, you’ll have the distinct pleasure of interacting with and learning from Dr. Anil Arya.  First of all, he’s hilarious.  Yes, he’s a professor so you’re going to learn, but he makes it fun in that he’s not afraid to pick on himself (or perhaps a student, if the opportunity presents itself).  Second, his examples are clear, thorough, and relevant.  Third, he’s genuinely interested in making sure that you learn, and is very clear about why he assigns what he assigns.

So – how does he fit into my Valentine’s Day post?  Check out what he sent us, on Valentine’s Day.  If this doesn’t convince you the Fisher MAcc program is a winner, I don’t know what will:

Dear kids:

Having been born in a country where three-quarters of the marriages are still “arranged”, it is no wonder I forgot to note Valentine’s day in class yesterday.

So, Happy Valentine’s day to each of you.  I hope you have a nice day, and I know you will also make sure your friends in class too (from distances near and afar) have a wonderful evening.

See you tomorrow.

Sincerely (or is the appropriate sign-off “love you” on such occasions?),
arya

This is pretty much how his class is!  This e-mail is obviously genuine and he communicates his concern for each of us, but it’s done in such a comical way that I can’t help reading it over and over.  I told you, both Ohio State and its professors love us!


An Open Letter to My Children

When I was thinking about writing this blog, I imagined it as an open letter to my children. Something like this…

Dear Samuel & Amelia,

One day I hope you will understand why I decided to change careers and go to grad school later in life. I hope it will make you proud, and help you understand the importance of higher education. In so many ways, I have done this for you.

I know that is hard to understand as you try to navigate seventh grade and third grade, most weeknights without mom there to help you through the day’s challenges. But each night as I’m sitting in class, I look at the clock and think of each of you. Six o’clock: supper should be made, something dad did his best to put together. Seven o’clock: Homework in full swing, or nearly finished. A trip out to the barn to feed the chickens and goats. Eight o’clock: Washing up with baths and having a snack before bed. Nine o’clock: Tucked in, book bags packed for the next school day. I’ve missed all of that, night after night, to learn about business, ethics, the law, employment practices, and the myriad other details I must learn to become an HR professional.

There have been other casualties along the way too: missed 4-H meetings, missed parent-teacher conferences, missed piano lessons, missed bowling matches, missed suppers and missed conversations. And even when I am home, how many times have I set aside time together so I could study, go to a group meeting, put together a project, or read a case study? The answer: too many.

I know that you are here, and thank goodness for your dad who has so often become two parents rolled into one, but I can’t help but miss you. I miss all of you.

But when I walk into Ohio Stadium four months from now, cap on, smile wide, know that I will again be thinking of you. And this time I won’t say I miss you. I will say thank you and I love you.

Love,

Mommy


When the daily grind is too much, take a much needed break

I consider myself to be a rational person. I enjoy warm weather and am not a big fan of snow. It has barely snowed in Columbus this winter. I should be happy. Instead, I trekked over to the mini-mountains of Pennsylvania and exposed myself to 48 straight hours of snow. Midterms really will drive you insane.

Ok, so I did not just sit in the snow for no apparent reason. I went on a ski trip with nine of my good friends. The purpose of this post is two-fold. First, if you have never tried skiing, give it a shot in the next month or so before “winter” is over. More importantly, take breaks from classes and/or work. To put the first point to rest, I have skied fewer times than Jeremy Lin has started an NBA game, so you don’t have to be good to have fun. Just set up shop on the “green cirle” hills (the easiest level), and you will do just fine.

On to the bigger point – you need some escape from the grind of classwork, projects, midterms, and whatever else a job brings on a daily basis. Certainly a weekend on the beach would be even better, but any getaway can rejuvenate you (mentally; physically, skiing is not the best “rejuvenator”) after a few stressful weeks. Plan something with a few friends once a month or so, even if it is nothing big. For those in Columbus, some ideas are: a trip to Cleveland to the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame, Cincinnati for a riverboat gambling trip (be responsible!), Canton to the Professional Football Hall of Fame, or any other nearby city just to visit a different place (Toledo, Indianapolis, Pittsburgh) that are only a few hours away by car or bus and are reasonably cheap. It is a great way to break up the quarter, giving you something to look forward to for a few weeks at a time, then, of course, actually serving as a getaway for a weekend.

This is something I have tried to do for the last several years. As great as it is to take breaks from school, I appreciated it even more in my two years in a professional environment. With school you have 10-15 weeks of certain classes, then everything changes. In an actual job, it can seem like there is no end goal in sight. Sure, this plan costs some money, but, in my opinion, a little cash is worth my sanity.

And if anyone actually wants to take my advice, the next destination is Chicago for St. Patrick’s Day. I have already started my countdown.


“Chart your Course” – The Fisher Graduate Women in Business Annual Summit

Last week, I wrote about meeting Kevin Malhame, owner of Northstar Café and Third and Hollywood restaurants at the “Taste of Innovation” event.  Well, the very next day I attended the Fisher Graduate Women in Business Annual Summit, an event that I also attended last year as a recently accepted WPMBA student.  My manager graciously gave me the go-ahead to let me spend part of my busy workday at this event, which was focused on women entrepreneurs and the concept of driving your career.  “Chart your Course” featured numerous different speakers, including a Professor, three local Columbus entrepreneurs, and a career counselor.  All were excellent speakers and very insightful.  I especially enjoyed the workshop lead by Nancy Jane Smith, carreer counselor.  Her process for finding your “right” career really clicked with me, and I plan on using it throughout my career.

But the highlight of the event for me was meeting Liz Lessner, CEO/Founder of the Columbus Food League – and more notably, Betty’s restaurant – a favorite of mine!    After Liz spoke on the panel, I introduced myself to her and, just like I did with Kevin, told her how much I love her restaurants and admire the work she’s done in Columbus.  Liz was amazingly warm, kind, and down-to-earth – I felt like I could have talked to her for hours!  She gave me some insight on how I could merge my passion for good food and great restaurants with my non-experience in the industry.

In less than 24 hours, I met both of my Columbus food idols – the owner of Northstar Café and the owner of Betty’s!  It seems my MBA is paying off already.  Thanks, Fisher!

Betty's: Check it out on High St. & Lincoln St.


Random Happenings

All sorts of fun and random things have occurred this week, further proving that Ohio State is a great place to be! President E. Gordon Gee sent out a Valentine’s Day video, in which students talked about the places they love most at Ohio State. The university celebrated the naming of our medical center after Les Wexner and also marked the 50th anniversary of Ohioan John Glenn’s space flight.

In addition to these Ohio State happenings, several more individual experiences are worth noting. One of my professors, when discussing a healthcare example, mentioned that it would pertain to me since I volunteer at the hospital. I was impressed that he remembered this fact about me and tied it into the class lecture. Also, we had another successful weekend of Volunteer Income Tax Assistance. I was at the location with OSU law school students, some of whom were former MAcc students, and it was again wonderful to help people. Finally, I really enjoyed watching (for free!) the Ohio State women’s gymnastics meet, in which OSU set a school record with over 197 points. There is always something exciting occurring here!

 


The Opportunities are Endless at Fisher!

As a Working Professional MBA student, there are many weeks that I’m sure I cannot possibly fit anything else in my schedule.  But I still try.  With only being at Fisher for a little over two years, I hope to experience several speakers, events, and opportunities that I could not or would not have the opportunity otherwise.  The Fisher College does an excellent job of bringing in speakers and having events geared to expanding knowledge, networking with executives, and some opportunities just to have fun.  Granted, the majority of events are held during the weekday which are a little harder to attend but talking with your employer about the event you want to attend may help in your ability to go.  Going to the Varsity Club after class is also a good place for networking (or so I’m told, my hour drive home hinders me going, but some night I really will go after class.)

One of the events that was held recently was the Taste of Innovation; a fundraising event for the Spring Innovation Summit that will be held on April 20th.  Fortunately, my 8pm class was not being held so a group of six WPMBA students went (among many other students from other programs).  A sampling (and by sampling, I mean, enough to call supper and then some) of food was offered by a few Columbus restaurants.  As someone not from Columbus, I intend on making a trip to a couple of the restaurants now that I’ve had a yummy sampling!  The owner of Northstar Cafe, Kevin Malhame also spoke about what he is looking for when hiring using an comparison of finding a “good egg” when cooking.  It was a fun event, great conversation with classmates, and good food.

These outside of class events are important to meet and networking with others.  You never know who you will meet that may lead you to a new job, new career, or just a new friendship.  What you know is important, but who you know can potentially be even more important.  I encourage you to attend some events outside of class.  The HUB has most of the upcoming events listed with information or a contact.  Find something that interests you personally and professionally and make plans to go.


Taste of Innovation

Last week, I had the pleasure of attending the “Taste of Innovation” event hosted by Fisher.  The event was right up my alley.  It was catered by local Columbus restaurants including Betty’s, Jury Room, Jeni’s Ice Cream, and others.  And the keynote speaker was the owner of Northstar Café, Kevin Malhame – number one on my top five restaurants list.  Thus, I took it as a sign of good fortune that my typical 8 pm Thursday night class was cancelled, allowing my classmates and I to attend this exciting event.

We expected the food to be small hors’ devours, but my friends and I were greeted with full-on entrée-size portions upon arrival, which suited our 8 pm bellies just fine.  Some of the food I had tried before, like the veggie burrito from Betty’s.  I have yet to dine at Piada, a quickly growing Chiptole-meets-Italian type restaurant.  I had heard mixed reviews – some loving, some not so much.  The burrito I tried put me in the not-so-much camp, but I will visit the actual restaurant before I take an official stance.  I also tried some macaroni salad and chicken salad cups from Jury Room, both of which were fantastic.  And, of course, the icing on the cake was the Dark Chocolate Gelato I had courtesy of Jeni’s Ice Cream – a staple in my life.

And then came the keynote speech from Kevin Malhame, owner of Northstar Café and Third and Hollywood restaurant here in Columbus.  The chance to meet Kevin and hear him speak was my main motivation for attending the event.  I’ve admired Northstar from the very first bite of Veggie Burger I took many years ago and have always wondered what it would be like to work for such an innovative company.  Kevin spoke about what he looks for in a “good egg” – both in the culinary sense and in his employees.  It is clear that Northstar Cafe sets very high standards for not only its ingredients, but also the people it chooses to represent them – both evident in the many dining experiences I’ve had there.  After his speech, I was fortunate enough to actually speak one-on-one with Kevin about his restaurants and my career interests – and even snag a free dinner at Third and Hollywood (after giving it mixed reviews – hey, he told us he likes honesty!).

Stay tuned for my next blog post about my experience meeting Liz Lessner, the owner of Betty’s, another one of my top five!


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