Archive for January, 2013

The Business of Finding a Job … Or Internship

As part of a requirement for the MHRM program here at Fisher, most students need to find an internship to take on during the summer between our first and second year. This search can begin as early as the first few weeks of school and continue in to early spring semester. Every students experience is different.

Lucky for us, Fisher has developed strong relationships with all kinds of companies. Exxon Mobil, PepsiCo, Eaton Corporation, Rolls Royce, and many more come to campus specifically to recruit Fisher students. A list displaying some of the companies that recruit HR students here at Fisher can be found here.

Loving the view as I fly to an onsite interview.

My internship search began in September and I was fortunate to wrap it up in November. During those months I went on three first round/on campus interviews and two second round/on site interviews – leading to two offers and eventually the acceptance of one.

Everyone’s experience is different, some students have very specific interests that lead to searching for that perfect internship. Others are not quite sure where they want to go, leading them often to attend many info sessions and take more first round interviews in order to learn more about the options available to them. Some students wish to stay in the Columbus area, others (like myself) are more open to travel – I’ll be spending my summer in Dallas, TX.

The search can be overwhelming and stressful, but the experience of interviewing with top companies both here on Fisher’s campus and (when offered the opportunity) onsite at company headquarters is an excellent learning experience regardless of the final outcome. Personally I gained confidence in my own interviewing skills, learned the importance of networking, and experienced the frenzy that can come along with business related traveling.

This summer is sure to be a giant step out of my comfort zone, a humongous growth experience, and hopefully a lot of fun. I’m grateful (as I’m sure my fellow classmates are) to Fisher’s Career Management department for the part they play in maintaining strong relationships with top organizations. Now it’s up to us as interns to exemplify the quality of student that attends Fisher College of Business. I know I am certainly up for the challenge!


Things to do in Columbus (plus, a little buckeye)

This past weekend, I was able to go to the Columbus Blue Jackets game with my younger sister. While my wonderful Jackets lost 2-3, Erin and I had a blast AND we received free hats!

My younger sister is a freshman at Ohio State and currently applying to the nursing program. I am so happy that she chose to attend OSU – so I can see her a little more frequently AND keep an eye on her. Because truly, what are big sisters for?

My sister & I cheering on the Blue Jackets!

I’ve mentioned it in a few previous posts, but I love Columbus, Ohio. I moved here in 2007 when I started at OSU as an undergrad, and I now consider the 614 my home. I moved back to Cincinnati for a summer or two, and then Orlando, Florida when I was working at Walt Disney World. Still, from Southern  Ohio to Florida – there is something special about Columbus.

When entering the MBA program, you are surrounding yourself with resources, both inside and outside school. We have top companies in the Columbus Area (check out this article that appeared in Inc. in 2011), cool neighborhoods when you are ready for some fun and great sports teams (what can I say – I’m a sports girl).

Cool places to around school:

  • Arena District – see a show and have a drink – I’m in heaven!
  • Short North – edgy and express (see my post about Betty’s!)
  • German Village – shopping, bakeries, coffee and beautiful architecture
  • Grandview – Close to campus and great for place for graduate students to go when wanting to relax and enjoy a happy hour
Sports around Columbus:
Food:
Other cool things in my favorite city:
So, why are you still reading? go explore this fabulous city – see you around :)

 


As Tax Season Begins, MAcc Students Serve

It’s finally here!  VITA – Volunteer Income Tax Assistance – has begun!

Each winter for six weeks, Fisher MAcc and select undergraduate students volunteer at Godman Guild and the OSU Law Extension Center in Columbus to provide tax preparation assistance to low-income individuals and families.  After weeks of organizing training and compiling schedules (with much help from other volunteers), we kicked off our first volunteer session on Friday at Godman Guild.

A great group of volunteers for our first week of VITA!

We had several individuals come in and were able to prepare their federal tax returns to be submitted at the end of the month.  These Columbus residents are able to obtain refunds through several different credits including the child tax credit and earned income credit.  What is more important than learning how to complete the tax returns is the time we spend hearing the stories of these people who are really our neighbors.  For many of the people we help, their tax refund will be the largest sum of money received in the year and will help them make it through the winter.  We had a few familiar faces as well – people have been coming to Godman Guild for our assistance since the program began ten years ago.

I’m excited to see how the rest of the tax season goes as we continue to complete returns at Godman Guild and the Law Extension Center.  I’ll be sure to give an update at the end of the season to share how many individuals we were able to help in these six weeks of service!


3 Unexpected Benefits of the Fisher MBA

There are benefits to “getting an MBA” which are common knowledge, and it’s likely that you are familiar with most of them. These benefits are a little different for everyone, but usually they include being able to switch careers, build a network base, find a good internship/job, and/or build a broad knowledge base in how to run a business.

Fisher provides every single one of those benefits to any student who is willing to work hard and take advantage of the opportunities that are here. However, after one semester, there have been three unexpected benefits of the Fisher MBA program that have helped me a great deal, both in and outside of school. These three advantages to getting a Fisher MBA are much more difficult to tangibly identify, but they are nevertheless very real:

  1. You learn how to better manage your time. Pre-MBA, I honestly thought I was pretty good at time management, but in reality, I had a lot to learn. When you add together the standard MBA work (classes, homework, group projects, exams), an internship where I work part-time during the week, networking interviews/events, study time for professional tests outside of school, and time with my wife, life gets full fast. Perhaps the most valuable skill I have been learning here at Fisher is time management and how to “keep the main thing the main thing.”
  2. You get a lot of practice making decisions. Before Fisher, I had never done a case study before, but that is no longer the case, let me tell you. Whenever I study a case now, I purposefully try to think through what exactly I would do in the situation present in the case and why I would do that, even if the case doesn’t necessarily ask. One of the best parts about cases is that they give you regular practice at making difficult decisions, and I have truly felt my ability to make decisions improve. This has bled over directly into my life outside of school and it’s really nice!
  3. You are better able to converse with a wide variety of people. Over the past few months I have had the privilege to meet and talk to a lot of quite different people. Because of the Fisher MBA classes, class readings, guest speakers, diverse classmates, etc., my knowledge base has broadened, which has really helped me have much deeper conversations with people than I would have had without the Fisher MBA experience. I definitely saw this over Christmas break.

I am by no means at the level where I should be in any of these areas, but after one semester of the Fisher MBA I can definitely see improvement in more than just academics. The Fisher MBA program is teaching me life skills that I will utilize for the rest of my life.

Looking forward to semester 2 of 4!


The Bloomberg Lab at Fisher

I have the great opportunity to serve as the proctor of the Bloomberg lab for the Fisher College of Business. This however is not job a task of simply browsing the web or working on homework. I have to learn the ins and outs of Bloomberg, while trying to remember the a few of the hundreds of prompts and other various commands. The interesting part of this job is that I have access to the most powerful business analytic tool in the world.

Fisher is fortunate enough to have a dozen or so terminals in the lab, making research for various finance projects exciting and comprehensive. Also, the tools within Bloomberg make report and template building a cinch. Bloomberg however is not just for searching company information and obtaining financials. You have access to worldwide business news, market trading floor updates and even sports and entertainment information.

In all, Bloomberg is a powerful tool, available to all Fisher students, but the best ability to learn is through exploration. Students have access to take Bloomberg exams to become Bloomberg certified; meaning you understand the basic prompts, keyboard and functionality of being able to “get around” Bloomberg. Definitely worth a visit on a trip down to Fisher!

It isn’t as intimidating as you think!


Getting To Know Your Peers At Fisher

When I was looking into business schools, I had a list of specific attributes that my target school needed to possess. The size of the class and the number of students attending the program was high on that list. I wanted to be sure that I would be able to know my peers and my professors. I also wanted them to know me. At Fisher, that isn’t a problem. Let me tell you why:

Class Size

My class size is approximately 130 students in the full-time MBA program. This allows for the school to divide the students into four cohorts all consisting of roughly 30 students. During the first year, classes are assigned by cohort which enables students to have classes with every one of their peers, on multiple occasions.

Student Organizations

Fisher is full of student organizations that help students meet others that have similar interests and hobbies. The organizations can range from the marketing or finance club, to the golf or Fisher 5k club. Anyone that is interested in starting a student organization is given that opportunity. These clubs and organizations have enabled me to meet many other students and get to know them on a more personal basis.

Classroom Environment

The classroom environment at Fisher breeds participation and collaboration. Students are expected to participate and share their knowledge with the class. Professors frequently cold call their students to make sure they are prepared and to keep them on their toes. Attending class and hearing from my fellow students has been one of the best ways I have learned more about them. They share details of their past jobs and what management principles they were able to apply or learn during those years. Not only do I learn about business, but I learn more about my friends.

Social Opportunities

I wish I had enough time to write about all of the social opportunities that exist at Fisher. Every week our Social Chairs make everyone aware of “the event of the week.” This is usually an evening at a bar or a sporting event that allows students to relax outside of the classroom and have a good time. Aside from those events I know a number of students that play intramurals, go to the gym, attend concerts, try new restaurants, and many other activities together. The possibilities really are endless.

These are a few of the areas that have allowed me to meet many of my fellow classmates at Fisher. Because of Fisher, not only will I have learned a great deal from my classmates, I will leave knowing every one of them and viewing them all as my friends.


The Job Hunt Begins: New York City

It all started back in December when I took a trip with Dan Oglevee and several other Fisher students, both graduate and undergraduate, to New York City. On that trip, we visited J.P. Morgan, UBS, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and several others. We heard from several investment bankers about their jobs, life on the street and about their journey. Unlike many others on the trip, I was looking more into equity research than investment banking. Even with meeting only 1 researcher, I learned 3 things:

  1. Networking in person is key
  2. Mock interview with an alum exposed me to how much I know and don’t know
  3. I no longer want to do research on the street, I need to do it

With this I have now narrowed my focus and increased my drive. Since coming back, I have done several phone calls with sell side analysts and networking with people here in Columbus in the buy side to give me greater exposure and knowledge of what I’m striving to achieve. The next step is to book my flight to New York and network in person in February.


Fisher Annual Book Draw

Every year before the winter break, students and faculty gather together in the student lounge to participate in the annual Fisher Book Draw.

The book draw is hosted by the members of the Graduate Programs Office. Favorite books of the faculty at Fisher are purchased and on hand for students to receive through the drawing.

Each student, regardless of graduate program, is eligible to win one of the books.

This year, I was lucky enough to win one of the books that was given. I received the book The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America. I am about halfway through the book and it has been a great read thus far.

The annual book draw is just another reason that I have loved my time at Fisher. It is an example to me of the benefits of attending a business school that has a small intimate feel where students really get to know all of the faculty and all of their classmates. Fisher provides that in so many ways and the annual book draw is just one of them.


What Winter?

Thus far the weather since returning to school has been fair to say the least.   However, for those non-Ohio natives, Columbus traditionally has sometimes-unpredictable weather patterns that not even local meteorologists understand (in my opinion).    For example, last weekend, temperatures hit 65 degrees in Columbus by mid Saturday afternoon.   People were dressing like it was the middle of May, forgetting that next week, things could easily drop 40-50 degrees.   But to this point, Columbus hasn’t seen much snow.   Most snow fall, occurred over break, when most of the SMF students were already away back at home, or as many foreign students did, traveled to other cities in the USA (mostly warmer, tropical places).

While winter has been fair to students thus far, we are in for a twist. Monday (MLK Day) and the day after, flurries are in the forecast.   Sure flurries are a normal part of winter weather, which accounts for an easy meteorologist pick to settle any indifference as to if precipitation will actually fall or not.  The part that is alarming however is the low temperatures in the next few days will be in the single digits.   With the wind that will be accompanying the colder weather will actually make the temperatures feel like below zero.    The winds traditionally in Columbus can be nasty, almost making that snow we haven’t had yet, seem better than arctic blasts of cold air.

Tomorrow

Last Weekend


Beating the cold

“It’s currently 7 degrees, but with the windchill it feel about 5 degrees below zero.” OK, not exactly what I wanted to hear waking up and getting ready for class. Coming off a long weekend filled with leisurely studying made the news even more painful.

But, no matter the temperature outside, we are already in our 3rd week of the term and classes are in full swing. Cases are due within days, project deadlines are approaching, two midterms on Monday and my operations homework is due on Thursday.

Don’t forget the internship search is in full swing and interviews are popping up every week. Fisher keeps students on their toes and constantly growing and improving… However, it’s not all work and studying!

After about 18 weeks of being in class together, I know and love my core group. We have a system in place for projects and it seems to be working on very well. All the first years have figured out ways to study and prepare for class – even good ol’ finance. Our social chairs host great events that allow the class to mingle and relax at the end of the week.

If looking to get off campus for a bit, I am happy to report the Columbus Blue Jackets have (finally) returned – and starting the season off strong. You can always take a Short North Walking tour and experience the incredible food of the North Market. I love the Arena District, and they always have something exciting going out to beat the cold and snow.

Bottom line? No time for winter blues here at Fisher.  


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