The Fisher Flag Football Championship

While the softball game we played versus the second years was mainly for networking and getting to know our fellow MBAs, the Fisher 1st Year Flag Football Championship was all about pride.

Scarlet vs. Gray (Except the Gray Team is in Red and vice versa)
Scarlet vs. Gray (Except the Gray Team is in red and vice versa)

After playing soccer intramurals with two different teams due to roster size limitations, we again had to split the Fisher first years who wanted to play intramural flag football into two teams, the Fisher Scarlet and Fisher Gray teams. I captained one team and another first year who organized most of this captained the other. We drafted all the students who wanted to play onto one of our two teams in snake-draft fashion (we missed out on having an NFL Draft-style stage to do this in the lounge).

My team went for speed (and missed taking the fastest player) and the other went for size and players who looked like they could play actual tackle football.

There was a three game season and after rain outs and rescheduling, our two teams were scheduled to meet in an epic clash across from Fisher Commons, at Fred Beekman Park, in the 2nd of the three games. You just needed to win one of the three games to make the playoffs.

The Scarlet team was absolutely jobbed out of a win in their first week after the refs completely mishandled the most basic rules of the league. The Gray team got absolutely pounded by law students, one of whom was a former BYU quarterback (yeah well I passed the NY State bar so I’m better than those law students anyway. Jerks). So a playoff spot was on the line in the Fisher v. Fisher game.

I can’t speak for the Scarlet team, but our Gray team had an hour and half long practice before the game at the ARC at OSU and got all of our formations and routes down. We figured out who was going to play what position and how to best exploit the rules for the game. We figured out which one receiver to focus our defense on. Real business school thinkin’ right here.

Thrilling high octane offense
Thrilling high octane offense

There wasn’t much action in the first half aside from turnovers and me getting decked by a girl (this happens a lot when I play sports. Usually by the same girl). A couple of interceptions almost got returned for scores, but nobody was able to get through there and the defenses consistently stopped the offenses after the turnovers. Things finally heated up, however, on the last play of the first half when the opposing QB dropped back to pass and threw an incompletion. But of course ya boy committed roughing the passer and they got another play.

Halftime Huddles
Halftime Huddles

What happened then was bogus to say the least. The other team’s best receiver CLEARLY stepped out of bounds multiple times but the refs missed every one and they scored on the last play of the first half on a play that started with zero seconds on the clock. They missed the conversion but went up 6-0 at the half.

The Gray team scored on a QB scramble to tie the game and would score another touchdown to go up 13-6. The Scarlet team got a few chances but couldn’t even it up. They ended up with one more drive to attempt to tie the game.

Us on defense
Us on defense

On the last play, with only a few seconds left, their quarterback threw a desperation heave to the flag and somehow completed it and made the score 13-12 with no time on the clock. They had to complete the one point conversion to be able to get the game to be a tie and likely send both teams to the playoffs pending final standings.

But the Scarlet team got too cute. On an end around to the Copedaddy, Ben Prater, fellow author on this blog, dove and took off the Copedaddy’s flag and ended the game 13-12. The bench exploded onto the field and nearly tackled Mr. Prater.

We got a bunch of MBAs to come out and watch and played a hell of a close game. Everyone who played had fun and everyone on the sidelines was getting into it. Even the class Grandpa (<3 you B-Rad).

My Gray team made the playoffs and the Scarlet team missed by a point and a referee mess up. And it turns out, we may be playing the second year Fisher team if we can win our first playoff game. My god.

(All photos copyright Teryn Wessel Photography, 2014)

The First Year vs. Second Year Softball Game

There’s naturally going to be a rivalry between MBA classes. Second years will think they have the best class ever and the first years will naturally think they have the coolest, most awesome and interesting class ever (I only say that because it’s true in this case). And, as far as I know, there’s only one way to settle which team is cooler: pickup softball games in the rain.

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I’m the cool guy manager in the middle

Just as a preface to what I’m about to write, the first years are still way cooler and more handsome/beautiful and way more interesting. Just so you know.

The second years here are multiple time OSU intramural softball champions. They all have coordinating shirts and their own equipment and play baseball together pretty much every week.

The first years have never played softball together. We had no idea who was good, who wasn’t or if anyone would even care enough to show up.

The second years have at least one former professional baseball player on their team.

The first years unanimously decided to play intramural soccer rather than baseball.

What I’m saying is that this was a mismatch.

The first years valiantly hung with the second years for a few innings, but unearned runs and errors were our undoing. Despite a valiant and inspiring speech before the last inning and solo cups in center field, we just couldn’t overcome their actual talent and caring.

But, it was much closer than it had any right to be and if anything, brought our class together just a little more. We showed that we could be better if we worked at it like they had and had more people show up from our class than theirs, including our own cheering section.

The fact that we were even close was surprising and the fact that we easily could have won with a little work in the field showed us that we were the true champions.

After a night of networking that I was forced to leave early, we knew the second years were pretty good at baseball, but the first years were the most awesome and smart and just flat out inspiring.

Both classes are united in their own ways and every class after ours will be, even if I’ll prefer ours. Small class sizes let you meet every person in your class and know them fairly well. When there are only 120 students in a grade, you really get to know everyone intimately in a fashion you just can’t at a bigger school, and it allows for opportunities like this where everyone interested can get involved.

And the class of 2016 is pretty cool, all in all.

Midterms, Accounting and Networking: Not that Bad!

Things have kind of ramped up here in the Fisher Full Time MBA program over the last couple of weeks. Even though we were already busy, our first set of midterms were upon us, our first accounting case was due and graduate careers fairs were beginning.

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My Husky Energy dog from the Career Fair says “Arpha!”

This is going to sound as bizarre as having a football team with nobody over 5’10, but midterms were probably the easiest and least stressful part of the middle of September. There was only so much to study three weeks into school. Our Marketing Math quiz was literally based off of three pages, our Marketing exam was more application than memorization, Econ was more art (literally) than science and Finance could have been about 1000000% harder than it was. Like they say in business school, learning more than grades are what matters and once you realize the professors aren’t going to absolutely kill you on exams, the focus on learning becomes a lot easier to handle. It’s all about application and not rote memorization like many undergraduate exams tend to be.

The real big bad in all of this was an accounting case worth about 2% of our grade, if even that. Accounting has supremely thick barriers to entry, at least in the way we have been taught, and with CPAs being exempt from the class, it seemed like absolutely nobody knew what was going on. Thankfully, because our CPA Fisher Family brothers and sisters love us so much, they were happy to help us with our homework and at least give us a push in the right direction. We had study groups the two days before the case was due and even if nobody could completely figure it out, we’re learning and I think that’s all that matters. I hope, anyway. I’ll let you know how the next case goes.

And then there was the Fisher Graduate Career Fairs. The big one was in the Blackwell on the Fisher Campus and brought companies such as Johnson & Johnson, Nationwide, Wendy’s and PolyOne. It was a chance to try out our pitches of ourselves if nothing else and get used to talking to people at these booths about their companies and learning about places we could potentially intern next summer.

To say my first attempt at this was a trainwreck would be a lie as it was far, far worse than that. I’ll keep the details of this talk classified but let’s just say I won’t be getting a job with this employer. I slowly got better, however, and once I got to the companies I was actually interested in such as Wendy’s, as I am a longtime consumer of their wares, I felt like I was doing a decent job. Anyway, these fairs aren’t the end all be all of the job hunt but are good practice if nothing else.

Anyway, once these trials and tribulations of business school were over, there was still time to play soccer, do homework and do some intense Friday night networking in the Short North.

The best parts of all of these things though is that nearly every one of your classmates is going through the exact same thing and it helps you all bond and really become a Fisher Family (copyright someone, I’m sure). A lot of us have gotten closer or just met more people through studying at Gerlach Hall or going to talk to the same employers at info sessions and then having some hardcore networking seshes on Fridays.

This part’s really been my favorite as I haven’t always had the easiest time making friends in the past. In law school everyone was dispersed and it was hard to see anyone outside of class. Undergrad was more of a bizarre experience for me, personally. But here, I’ve done the best I’ve done since about 2nd grade socially and am apparently the class mascot somehow. My face is on the top of this Grad Life blog. I couldn’t have made a better decision to have come and even things like midterms and horrible accounting cases and scary career fairs haven’t dampened that in the least.

Business School, Or Why I’m Enjoying Not Having a Minute of Free Time

Business school is filled with reading, class, club information sessions, studying and professors with fancy hair (maybe too fancy?). But that probably describes every business school in these United States. Every school has a finance association and every school has textbooks and every school has quiet rooms. But Fisher and The Ohio State University has so much more than that and as I told a second year, “I can’t handle myself right now.”

Your views are not appreciated here, Business Cat
Your views are not appreciated at Fisher, Business Cat

I could describe abstractly my schedule and everything I’ve had to do in the month plus I’ve been at Ohio State coming from New Jersey and another huge state school in Rutgers. I could just say you could get lost in everything here, but I think there’s a better way to do this: I’m going to lay out as much of my schedule on Monday September 16, 2014 as I possibly can. It may seem like a crowded day, but I promise this is pretty much what every Monday is going to be for me for the foreseeable future, so here it is COMIN’ AT YOU HARD.

8-8:30AM: Print out Econ discussion questions for that sweet participation credit.

8:30-10:00AM: Accounting class featuring Jolly Bob’s Jerk Joint and joining intramural flag football leagues. I am a good student I swear.

10:15-11:45AM: Econ class! A blur of supply and demand curves even a day later. Reminiscing about Jolly Bob’s.

12-1PM: 3M Marketing Info Session: Free lunch! It was sammiches. And free pens! Oh and learning about 3M’s marketing internships and full time opportunities.

1-2PM: I exercise/listen to the Pitch Perfect Soundtrack. Barden Bellas 4 lyfe.

2:30-3PM: The two team captains for intramural football draft our players. It can get challenging determining the net present value of Ryan McClellan vs. Adam Tedrick. I should be doing work now butttttttt….no.

3-7PM: Studying for Marketing Math Quiz tomorrow and realizing I don’t have a calculator. I buy a $3.50 one from the bookstore. It does not have exponents. Also studying marketing cases and doing finance homework. I realize (have it reinforced, more likely) that I have no idea what is going on in finance. This is important as the midterm is 3 days away. I need to pack in all this studying for tomorrow because the day’s about to go sideways.

7:30-8:45PM: Intramural Soccer. I’m also one of the captains for one of our two intramural flag football teams. While the football one entails duties like drafting people you know and pretending to be Urban Meyer, the soccer iteration involves bothering people endlessly to get them to officially sign up and telling them where the hidden field at Lincoln Tower Park is. But hey we won 7-6! Woo go Fisher Gray!

9-10PM: Go home and lay facedown drinking Gatorade. But today’s not over because I’m dumb.

10:30-12: Go play intramural Broomball with people I don’t know. I am a crazy person. It’s played with sneakers on a normal ice rink. I fell on my butt about 12 times and sent part of a broom almost into the stands that were filled with kids with nothing better to do than laugh at me fall on my face (no it was funny I don’t blame them). I did not know this sport existed before OSU and now I have a sore butt from it. Oh and we lost.

1AM: Finally eat dinner. Subway was literally the only thing open since McDonalds switched to their breakfast menu at midnight. I do not like eggs so this did not fly.

2AM: Bed.

7AM: Study for marketing math quiz.

SOOOO that was my day and a little added afterward. It may seem like I was annoyed or frustrated with the day, but there are just so many opportunities to take advantage of at Ohio State and Fisher. If I went to a smaller school or one with fewer opportunities, my day could have been over early and I could have been sleeping by 11. But why waste what’s out there? You’re not going to find stuff like this everywhere or maybe anywhere else.

 

First Year MBAs Connecting with Second Years

One of the aspects of coming to the Fisher MBA program most of us were worried about to some degree was connecting with our fellow first year MBA classmates. Through almost two weeks of orientation, Summit Vision (I assume), getting together after class and even Facebook of all things, that turned out to be one of the easier parts even for us who aren’t the most naturally social people in the world. But one of the more important aspects you don’t hear about is connecting with the second years. They have experience, knowledge and, most importantly for getting a job and not ending up sleeping on the streets in gargantuan debt after graduation, connections! And it turns out, connecting with them was just as easy.

Events with second years started even before pre-term at Fisher started in August. There were Fisher Social Chair events hosted by second years during the summer including a World Cup Final watch party. I was studying for the presumably Satan inspired bar exam at the time in New Jersey, so I couldn’t attend, but heard only great things. The night before pre-term started, there was another social event to get to know second years who had participated in Pelotonia in Columbus.

Through Facebook, they also invited anybody interested in participating in pickup sports to come play basketball and soccer with them when we hadn’t even really had an opportunity to meet us. A few first years went to the ARC and played basketball, even some of us (me!) who have the athletic ability of a fence post. I may have gotten destroyed by a girl in basketball, but that’s beside the point. She was an NCAA athlete shut up. I played soccer with different second years as well and, if anything, that was an even more inclusive atmosphere. Everybody makes an effort to get to know you and remembers you later. It’s the #FisherFamily coming together, obviously.

And of course, there are the tailgates for the OSU football games even if the team completely forgets to block and loses to middling Virginia Tech teams. Yes, I’m bitter. But we tailgated all afternoon at Fisher Commons before the 8:00 game at Ohio Stadium. There were games, hamburgers, hot dogs, brats and, of course, there was walking through cornfields. That last part was just implied but I wanted to make sure you guys out there knew. Point is, the second years hosted it and made us feel like we were really part of the class.

Walking to the Stadium after tailgating at Fisher Commons!
Walking to the Stadium after tailgating at Fisher Commons!

There is also the sterling 2nd year buddy program, as Danielle Black went in depth on. My buddy couldn’t attend as he was getting married during that mixer so I guess he has his priorities straight.

The biggest event was the 6 hour, North High Street bar crawl at the end of pre-term. The Social Chair led us on a true bonding experience with second years as well as our fellow classmates that was truly memorable and ended, expectedly, in a Taco Bell. Fun times had by all. There were also smaller happy hours held by clubs and associations at Fisher. We also later went out and sang karaoke. Thankfully, me singing Ignition (Remix) by R. Kelly does not have video evidence I’m aware of.

Fisher Karaoke!
Fisher Karaoke!

You may get destroyed by a girl in basketball in front of the second years, may not remember all their names and may not feel comfortable asking them questions about Fisher any time one pops into your head, but I promise they’re all there to help you out and are happy to. It’s really one of the most welcoming atmospheres I’ve ever been in. Just put yourself out there and you’ll have one of the best times of your life. It’s only September, and I already am. Some of them are even playing on the first year intramural soccer teams!