Too Many Choices (i.e. How Managerial Economics Might Apply to My Life)

Me running to my next activity. Except I have a backpack.


So I’ve made it through my first week of MBA life with mostly positive results.  Classes seem interesting.  My team is cool (and potentially the topic of my next blog – guys, this serves as your warning).  I only embarrassed myself once in class by not being prepared (note to self: read the syllabus BEFORE the first class of the quarter with a little more care).  Generally, life is good.  That being said, I’m starting to sense that I might have a problem.  I am way too excited about signing up for student organizations, and I might be getting a little over-involved (at least according to some of my teammates and the calendar on my iPhone).

Before I explain how economics relates to my problem, you should know a couple of things about me.  First, I am a generalist.  It’s probably one of my biggest strengths and one of my greatest weaknesses.  I find a lot of things interesting and I don’t like to be boxed in to a category.  While I think this helps me keep an open mind, it also means decision-making is tough.  I’m terrible at it.  Second, I had exactly one economics class as an undergrad.  I can’t even remember if it was macro or micro econ (it’s been a while. . ).  It apparently didn’t make a big impression, so taking economics this quarter is like taking it for the first time.

Anyhow, according to my Managerial Economics textbook, economics is the study of how people make choices under conditions of scarcity, and the Scarcity Principle states that even though we have unlimited needs and wants, our resources are limited.  Therefore, if time is my limited resource and the clubs I can join are (practically) unlimited, maybe economics will explain how to make my choices.  I’m hopeful, because choosing is hard.

For now, I’ll try to experience all I can and be most involved with the activities that continue to be the most fun and impactful as the year progresses (as of now, that means International Business Club, Fisher Graduate Women in Business, Innovation Fisher and Net Impact – more about those in my future blogs).   And maybe economics will come through in the end and save me from my overcommitment problem.  Or at least help me explain it to my neglected family and fiance.

*Update:  I mentioned in my last blog I wanted to do another international trip. . . this week I signed up to go to Ghana in June.  So excited!!!


Preparing to return to OSU by spending the summer in . . . Hong Kong???

I am going to start off my first official blog as a full-time MBA student by admitting that I am already a two-time grad from Ohio State (both degrees in engineering – and yes – this does mean I’m a bit of a nerd).  However, it’s been a year or two (or eight) since I’ve been a student, so the prospect of returning to writing papers and taking exams was a little daunting (not to mention the fact that I’ve never had a single business class).  So, in my quest to prepare myself to transition back to student life (and out of engineering), I decided to start off my second academic career with a summer internship in Hong Kong.

At the Fisher Red Carpet event last April for incoming MBA students, Kurtis Roush, the director of Fisher Professional Services, gave a presentation on the Global Summer Program, which offers Fisher students the opportunity to work as part of a team on a special project for a company in Ireland or Hong Kong.  My fiance, Mark, attended the presentation with me, and as soon as it was over, I turned to him and told him I had to go.  Fortunately, he’s extremely supportive, and the first words out of his mouth were “Go for it.”

I ended up as part of a great team of students (two second-year MBA’s, three undergraduates, and myself) working in Hong Kong at the Asia Pacific headquarters of the Parker Hannifin Corporation.  I’d never been out of the US (except to the English-speaking parts of Canada and the Caribbean, which I don’t count), so living someplace totally out of my comfort zone for 7 weeks was definitely a learning experience. I made new friends, got some great teamwork experience, and learned some new presentation skills.  While I was happy to come home to my fiance and family in the end, I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything.  I also can’t wait for my next international experience (maybe Brazil in the spring or Ghana next summer).

This summer was the first step in my plan to say “yes” to all the great opportunities that present themselves while I am at Fisher.  Over the next year, I’ll continue to post about my experiences (good and bad!), and try to convey the realities of life as a grown-up (at least in terms of age) who is trying to be a student again.


Fisher students at the Big Buddha on Lantau Island in Hong Kong (I'm the i!!)