Finding time for a little exploration

Well, as you’ve probably surmised from reading nearly every other post on this blog, getting an MBA is time consuming.  To be honest, I have to say that I feel very fortunate for having a business background coming into this program because I can’t imagine what it’d be like having never seen or heard of any of these concepts prior to taking the core classes.  Having graduated from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business, I have had econ, finance, accounting, marketing, etc. at an undergraduate level.  For those of my classmates that haven’t, and are managing to keep their heads above water, kudos to you!

As an aside, as I compare IU and OSU, I’d have to say IU was a great place to go to undergrad, but OSU is a much better place for grad school.  After the age of 22,  Columbus > Bloomington… sorry to my fellow Hoosiers!  Please don’t disown me.

Anyway, now on to the meat and potatoes of this post.  This won’t be a large serving of either, because I have a lot of work to get to, but I did want to introduce you to two spots I checked out over the weekend.

First, a friend of mine asked my wife and me to meet a small group of people for dinner at a place in Merion Village.  This is an area just south of German Village, and frankly, I hadn’t heard of it (and I grew up in Columbus).  We hopped in the car and headed south on High Street, passing such great options in the Short North then past even more eateries in German Village. We kept going south for a little longer when I almost decided to stop at the White Castle that seemed to be the last beacon of light before High Street became a lot more desolate.  I’m glad I kept going, because we ended up at this amazing little restaurant called The Explorers’ Club.  This is the kind of place that you might see Guy Fieri stop at on a Diners, Drive-ins and Dives episode and  it would make you wish you lived remotely close to it so you could “explore” it for yourself.  Luckily I do live close to this place, because it is amazing. If you go, try the Caribbean Jerk chicken.  You can thank me later.

The next night, my wife and I were meeting my parents for dinner in the Short North.  Prior to our meal, we decided to venture over to the Columbus Microbrew Festival outside the North Market.  This reminded me of a summer street fair in Chicago, which are typically awesome, but this one had a much smaller crowd, which made it that much better.  The beers were delicious, but more importantly, the atmosphere was laid back and fun.  My wife even commented, “It looks like everyone who’s here wants to be here and is genuinely happy to be here.”  We seem to find that a lot here in Columbus… people enjoy themselves and are generally very nice to those around them.

I had a great weekend, despite having to study for an Econ test, read a lot of marketing articles, work on a group project, just to name a few of the tasks on my t0-do list.  As many of the second year MBAs have told us already, it’s all about finding balance and making the most of your time.  While I am still pretty stressed, you probably wouldn’t be able to tell by looking at me on Saturday night: beer in hand, smile on my face and ready to continue to explore!


You could be here too!

Only in Columbus!

There are some things that have occurred over the past few days that can happen Only in Columbus!  I’m borrowing the term from a phrase associated with Don King, the famous boxing promoter, who would frequently say “Only in America” when referring to how he came from nothing and became a rich and famous persona.  My context is a little different, but bear with me.

Only in Columbus… can you be walking around The Ohio State University and run into the President of the university, E. Gordon Gee.  He’s very easy to spot, with his always-present bow-tie and smile.  From what we could tell, he was just walking around campus to introduce himself to new students arriving onto campus.  If you aren’t very familiar with him, just trust me when I say he’s both a local and national icon and a very distinguished administrator.

Only in Columbus… can you be walking around Easton Town Center, the outdoor, lifestyle mall on the east side of Columbus, and you run into former OSU Buckeye and current Boston Celtic Jared Sullinger.  Sullinger is also a local celebrity, having been born and raised in Columbus and being a high school basketball phenom, he was recruited to play basketball at OSU.  After an illustrious freshman year, it was all but certain he would enter the NBA draft.  But Sullinger chose to forgo the fame and wealth for one more year and return to the Buckeyes for a second year.  This past spring, he was drafted by the Boston Celtics and will start his professional basketball career.


And Only in Columbus… can you stand on a street corner and turn your head to the right and see the Horseshoe (Ohio Stadium, where the football team plays) and then turn your head to the left and see the Fisher College of Business.  I bring up this point to highlight how amazing of a location the FCOB has on campus.  It is located right by the iconic stadium, which means every time you walk in or out of the business school, you can be reminded of the exciting games and memories created at the Shoe.  And every time you go to a football game, you can look over and be reminded of the amazing experiences you had and the rich educational life you lived while studying at the FCOB.

Needless to say, I am a fan of Columbus, the FCOB and The Ohio State University.  I highly recommend it as a place to learn, live and start a career.

On a side note, at the football game this past weekend, the Dean of the Fisher College of Business, Christine Poon, was brought onto the field during a timeout and received a donation for the university of $4.9 million.  It was amazing to see her out there and to see the generosity of those loyal to the school.  Only in Columbus!

It’s not you … it’s me

Well, I should re-phrase that.  It’s not just you, it’s me too.  You may have heard this line before, typically associated with a breakup.  That’s not what I’m referring to here though.  No what I’d like to tell you is that when I first got a hold of the syllabi for my first term classes of my first year of my Fisher MBA, I immediately felt overwhelmed.  Even before our first day of classes, we were assigned several cases, textbook chapters and articles to read.  And after only two days of classes, the work has continued to pile on.  And I can’t imagine how I’m going to include all of the career searching, club joining, and personal-life living that I was hoping to do.

It was immediately evident upon walking out of only our second day of classes, most people were thinking the same thing as I was.  And that’s when a few of my fellow bewildered comrades and I got together and admitted to each other… it’s not just you, it’s me too.  We all felt the same way and were wondering what we got ourselves into!

What I’m trying to convey is that the workload at Fisher may seem a bit overwhelming upon first arrival.  But I’ve spoken with 2nd year MBA’s and alumni and they all persevered through these same feelings.  The MBA experience is not about just learning in the classroom, or joining as many clubs as you can fit on your resume. What I’ve quickly learned is that it’s also about learning how to manage all of the things you want to do with your limited resources (time, energy, passion, etc.) that you have.  I would like to leave you with a link to a very corny, yet inspirational video that was sent to me recently.  I think the message can be applied to anyone at any time in his/her life, but it’s especially pertinent to us first years who are trying to figure out how we’re going to juggle all that we need to over the next 20 months.