Posts filed under 'MHRM'

New Challenge, New Mentors, New Partners

It’s almost the middle of the first session and I have finally written my first blog for this semester. We still have just 3 core courses in the evening, but having heard a lot of good words about the selective courses, I chose to take 3 of the selective courses after a tough picking process. I’m interested in a lot of topics, such as leadership, team performance, technology innovation, and so on.

I end up with 6 classes on my list. One week later I found myself buried in reading materials, and although they are all very interesting, I dropped one of my selective classes.

This semester, we’ve got more readings, assignments, quizzes, and exams. But luckily, we’ve also got experienced teachers guiding us through the valuable process and classmates making progress with us. For example, Professor Klein has our picture and names and tries to remember every one of us. His class always begins with an interesting riddle and a quiz. A quiz is always stressful to me, but it happens the same day when I finished the reading and learn about it in the lecture. The best part is if I do well in all his quizzes, I can choose not to take the final exam.

Why we choose this program? Here’s our answers from our survey.
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Changing Strategies

What is the most ideal learning strategy? Some people would say sitting in a quiet place with little external distractions. Some might say by using the information in a practical setting to gain experience with feasibility. Some people would be okay with writing a detailed Data Analysis homework assignment, while listening to a 3 year old’s comments on her favorite part of Monster’s University as she watches the movie. Add to that a teething one year old who wants to be held and then doesn’t want to be held (repeat many, many times). You may have already guessed, but for me, the answer is all of the above.

The next most logical question might be, “How do you do that?” While writing the response, I chuckle, as probably most parents do, and say, “I just do.”  The truth is that there are limited options and I have to maximize the time I do have and prioritize the tasks effectively. This weekend I have several chapters to read (for all three classes), an intense homework assignment due, and preparations for a quiz on Tuesday. For this blog, I am not even going to mention the stuff at work!

The truth is, I could probably be doing much better if I had unlimited time and no distractions (an outcome I would never want). The benefit to be gained though, is that amidst all these deadlines and pressures, a thought emerged that everybody wants that. I am working with the best of what’s around and although I am not doing it “perfectly,” I am growing tremendously. Changing my thought process between what is comfortable and what is effective is not easy. Most likely, when I graduate, I will be in the midst of many projects, deadlines, and meetings. If I can grow and endure with all these considerations now, it is likely that I will be well-prepared for the challenges that lie ahead. “We all make time for what we want to make time for.”


Parks and Recreation

Here are a few of Columbus’ hot spots to escape to the great outdoors!

Highbanks Metro Park:

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  • 1,159 acre park
  • Includes wide range of activities, such as Biking, Canoeing/Kayaking, Cross-country ski trails, Fishing along the Olentangy River, Natural forest and play areas, Nature centers, Picnic areas, Sledding hills
  • 8 different hiking trails with a variety of terrain and distances
  • Domesticated dogs and cats permitted

Scioto Audubon Metro Park:

SAMP

  • 120 acre park
  • Located along the Scioto River and south of downtown Columbus
  • Includes wide range of activities, such as Biking, Fishing on the Scioto River, Nature center, Picnic areas, Obstacle course (The Columbus Rotary Obstacle Course), and Rock wall climbing
  • 3 trails (up to 2.5 miles long)
  • Domesticated dogs and cats permitted – 2.5 acre dog park (separate areas for large and small dogs and an agility course)

Three Creeks Metro Park:

3 Creeks

  • 1,100 acre park with over 100 species of birds
  • 8 different hiking trails with a variety of terrain and distances
  • Includes a wide range of activities, such as Biking, Canoeing/Kayaking on Alum Creek leading to Big Walnut Creek, Fishing at Heron Pond, Natural forest and play areas, and Picnic areas
  • Domesticated dogs and cats permitted – 4 acre dog park in Sycamore Fields Area

Heritage Trail Metro Park:

heritage_trail dog park

  • 87 acre park
  • 6.1 mile multi-use trail
  • 3.6 mile horseback riding trail
  • 4 acre dog park (separate areas for large and small dogs )

Antrim Park:

Antrim

  • 120 acre park
  • Grass athletic fields, basketball court, tennis court, and playground
  • Trails for hiking, running, biking or skating
  • Access to lake for fishing

*Hidden Gem – Hayden Falls Park:

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  • 2 acre gorge habitat with 35 foot waterfall and endangered plants
  • Includes a boardwalk, steps and an overlook, as well as picnic tables

Chinese Christmas Eve

I joined a Chinese Christmas party held by a friend of my father on December 26th. As you may know, Chinese people do not celebrate Christmas, but to my surprise, it seemed that they now treated Christmas as Chinese New Year (Spring Festival).

Just as Christmas is an important holiday to some Americans, Spring Festival is an important holiday to some Chinese. Our Spring Festival lasts about a month. Families start to prepare 20 days before the Spring Festival. We prepare food, clean houses, and hold special activities such as eating Laba Zhou, Ji Zao and so on.

At Chinese New Year’s Eve, all family members gather together and enjoy big dinner (similar to a Christmas dinner). But we do not give gifts, instead, children can receive Yasui Money (small red packets with money inside) from their parents and grandparents.

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My father’s friend who I call “Uncle Zhang” is in his 50s. He came to America 30 years ago, and now all of his family is in Columbus. He has a big family: his wife, 2 children, his parents, his sister and her family, and his mother- in-law.

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It was a wonderful night. When we arrived, Uncle Zhang’s sister had already prepared a big dinner. Perhaps because they have lived in the U.S. for a long time, some of their traditional Chinese habits have changed. For example, in China we do not use “common chopsticks” for all the dishes. The dinner is different from a traditional Chinese New Year’s dinner too. It is easy to understand as some traditional cooking material is not available in the U.S. But to my surprise, the parents of Uncle Zhang gave us a “red packet,” which is a traditional Chinese Spring Festival custom. They also gave us a small package with gifts in it.

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To conclude, it was a memorable night and gave me an insight into how Chinese mix American customs with their own traditions. For example, they treat Christmas as Chinese Spring Festival: gathering all families together, making a big dinner with both traditional Chinese dishes and American desserts, and giving us red packets as well as Christmas gifts.


The first week back

Happy New Year!  I hope that you all had a great vacation.  I had a truly restful vacation.  My initial plans were to do some intensive reading to prepare myself for the Spring semester. Those plans quickly fell to the wayside as I spent most of my time with my family. I must have read “Cat Power” and “Madeline” at least 50 times to my son and daughter, respectively. Our family passed around a cold throughout the break, but finally recovered. Despite the illnesses, we all truly appreciated the time together and the lack of pressure from school. The break was perfect, but as the new year arrived, I started yearning to get back into the groove of the semester.

The first week did not disappoint. In the first class of the week, we learned about tunnels underneath the business school! The data analytics professor mentioned it in class and I was among others who went to explore. Our class was in Schoenbaum hall. We went to the basement to find a locked door. Luckily, a faculty member happened to come downstairs and he let us in! We curiously found our way through empty classrooms, computer labs, and hallways with exposed pipes. We ended up coming up through Fisher Hall facing the garage. Of course, I”ll be spending sometime on campus before class further exploring this new area! In addition to the data analysis class, I will also be taking Staffing and Employment Law.

Work has been going well and I have still been actively utilizing many of the skills learned in the program. I recently proposed an Office Exchange program in order to increase company client knowledge, participate in a distinctly different work culture, and to facilitate more company wide cooperation. I will be going to the East office for three days and one of their coordinators will take my place at the West office. It should be an interesting experiment!


Learning Dining Etiquette

I got a new email from OUAB (Ohio Union Activities Board – ouab.osu.edu) about an opportunity to learn dining etiquette. Free meal and learn something, why not? After registration, they sent another email for us to pick the dishes. When I stepped into the dining hall, I was impressed by the well placed knives, forks, plates, glasses, etc. I’m glad that the university is so thoughtful to provide international students opportunities to learn life here. But what moved me even more is that the faculties and staff are devoted to give us the best care and help they can.
tableformal dinning

They served delicate food, from appetizers to coffee. At meal time, the speaker provided us suggestions from choosing food to taking a bite. We learned that the formal dinner is not about eating, but a chance to display our grace and make connections with people that will foster our future.

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At the end, when the waiter cleaned the table, he thanked us for keeping the table clean. It’s just a tiny thing, but he even expressed his appreciation for that while we were grateful for his considerate service. You can feel the efforts the university is making to get everybody involved. No wonder every time we shout out “O-H”, we will definitely get an “I-O”. We know we are embraced and have become part of it.


Basketball Game: OSU vs North Illinos

On Dec. 16, I watched a basketball game with my friend. The game was between our very own OSU and North Illinois University. It was the first time that I watch a basketball game. Although I was not very familiar with basketball rules, it was still an exciting experience to me.

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When we arrived at Jerome Schottenstein Center at 6:45 p.m., many people were already there. As we entered the center, I found people walking around, holding food and drinks and talking excitingly. It was hard to describe the atmosphere. It was like people were waiting for something exciting, but the atmosphere was more like a festival. When we found our seats and sat down, I was shocked because I had never seen so many basketball fans, which reminded me of the Quidditch games in“Harry Potter”. When I was young and reading “Harry Potter”, it was hard to me to image why wizards have such great enthusiasm in a sport game. Now I understood.

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Thanks to my basketball courses in my undergraduate university, I knew the basic rules of basketball. When the game began, people were caught by the game. They cheered for every goal and sighed for every miss. The first half of the game was quite exciting because the goals were so close. The beginning of the second part of the game was even more tense. I could feel a desire to win the game. At about the last 10 minutes, we gradually achieved the dominant position. The atmosphere changed again and it now became exciting. But it was different from the beginning of the game, as at first people were excited about the basketball game but now they were excited about the results.

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I was excited about the game, too. It was so different from watching a game on TV. I could hear people cheering, feel people’s excitement, and got exciting myself. But what impressed me the most is one small thing that happened during the game. Two men who sat on my right were loyal basketball fans. One of them was eager for a souvenir T-shirt given out by cheering squads members. Sitting on my left side was a father with a child. During the game the father introduced the game rules to his son patiently. When the guy threw the souvenir T-shirt for the last time, the father got a T-shirt and he gave it to his son. But later, the son gave the T-shirt to the man who sat on my right. The father explained that his son wanted to do so. It was so warm.

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As we won the game, people left with a sense of pride and excitement. When my friend and I waited for the bus, a car passed by and people in the car shout to us “O-H”, we responded by a loud “I-O”. Before the game, I never thought I would be so excited. But now I understand why people all around the world are crazy for sports: sports are really exciting and inspiring.


Sweet final week

“Final” might be a terrifying word for students. But as usual, OSU updated my impression again.

After the international food sharing class, our final class ended with a talk with our classmates in the bar, beer provided by our professor. We reviewed our first semester and shared our new great findings about our classmates’ presentation styles and so on. It was really fun!
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Another class is harder because of the strict requirement of the exams, in which we must be very accurate and clear to get a high score. We have covered a wide range of topics about organizational change and development, but the professor perfectly wrapped it up by drawing two boxes and several lines between it. And he has invited several senior students to talk about how they have applied what they learned in real work. They all looked confident and happy about what they are doing. It makes me feel excited about my own future.
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There are students studying late for their finals, but for us, we mainly got take home exams. They are not easy, but we have more flexibility in doing it. It really drives me to think about how I can turn what I have read and lectures into my tool-kit to analyze and solve problems.

Also, there were people giving out candies, good luck notes, and coffee near the Ohio Union on campus. “Good luck with your final” is just 5 simple words, but you have no idea how encouraging it can be during finals week.
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Q&A with a MHRM Student: Shane G.

ShaneShane Greskevitch: MHRM Class of 2017

Hometown: Wheeling, West Virginia

Undergraduate Major: Economics and Psychology

Favorite place to go in Columbus I really enjoy walking and biking on the Olentangy River Trail. Luckily, we have had beautiful fall weather this year and having the trail so close to my apartment and Fisher has given me the opportunity to spend a lot of time outdoors. On the weekends, I really enjoy wandering around Short North exploring the different shops and restaurants. I feel like there is always something new to try there.

Favorite extracurricular activity at Fisher: Any event put on by the MHRM Council. They do a great job organizing events such as scavenger hunts, networking activities, and group outings like “Zoo Lights” that make you feel closer to your classmates. A vast majority of 1st and 2nd years attend and participate, which has helped me get to know people in the program a lot better outside of the classroom.

Favorite hangout spot on OSU’s campus: The Shoe! I am a huge football fan and game days at OSU are awesome. Football Saturdays are a great opportunity to tailgate, eat great food, and socialize with friends and classmates. Once you’re inside, you realize how massive and electric the stadium really is. My first game is an experience that I’ll never forget. 

Favorite MHRM class thus far in the program I really enjoyed Markets, Organizations, and Human Resource Management. The class dives into the complexities of labor and employment issues from an economic standpoint. We discussed how we, as Human Resources professionals, must respond to changes in wage rates, employment trends, and macroeconomic conditions. I liked being able to put my economics background into a HR-related application.

What I hope to do after the MHRM program: After completing the program, I plan to become either an HR Generalist or a Compensation and Benefits Specialist for a large corporation. I’m hoping to work for a great company that will allow me to put my knowledge of HR to work right away.

Advice I would give incoming first years and/or prospectives: Do not be afraid to branch out to meet classmates and don’t be shy! Many friendships are formed within the first few days and weeks of the program. Don’t be afraid to start conversations with new people- remember: they are in the same situation as you are!


The end of the first semester

Just as I believe I am getting a good hold on everything and starting to catch up, the avalanche, that is the end of the semester, begins. Time just seemed particularly fast and at times almost overwhelming.

Family life was the usual, joyful craziness. It was probably due to the fact that between staying late at work and all the extra time working on school work, my kids clung to me whenever I was home. I would be looking over old articles and notes while my daughter sat in my lap drawing pictures of stick figures “going to the potty” and other miscellaneous topics. My son would alternate walking between my wife and I, practicing his new words such as, “bear”, “ball”, and “Uh oh”. My workload increased substantially because our peak season was officially upon us and the extra duties from working on the national conference that I am spearheading. Schoolwork included a group paper and two take home exams. One exam was a “timed exam”. Up to this point in my academic career, I had never done this, so I didn’t quite know how to prepare for it. Basically, you submit a file to a dropbox and it populates a folder which is timestamped. You then have to submit your exam back into the dropbox before the time limit expires (self monitored). It was an interesting experience and the 1 hour and 45 minutes seemed to disappear so quickly. I decided to take the exam at 5 am in the morning, because I am a morning person and my children were less likely to be awake!

One very odd experience was the last lecture that we attended as a group. We were standing outside Gerlach Hall saying “goodbye and happy new year” to each other, when suddenly there was a silence. I don’t know if anybody else felt this way, but I felt a moment of sadness in saying goodbye to a group of friends that I would not see for another month.

I turned in my last exam and am still getting used to not being in school. It was strange, but wonderful to drive straight from work to home (instead of to OSU). Instead of attending lectures, my family and I met up with another family at the Columbus Zoo to see the holiday lights. Near the end of the evening, we sat by the lake for the musical light show and danced through the medley of songs played. This was one of those moments which took my breath away. The smile from my daughter and son as we held hands and danced is still fresh in my mind. Yesterday, my family and I actually sat together on the couch and watched the Minion movie (well, most of the movie) together. This was the first time that we have ever done that! We are looking forward to more time together as we celebrate the holidays.

Finally, I am still stuck on my semester clock, so I am still waking up around 4 am daily. I have used this time to “clean up” my e-mail box. I noticed how many people have helped me to be where I am today and started sending holiday wishes and thank you’s to those people. In these few short months, I feel like I have lived a lifetime of experiences. It also was shocking to note that I am only about 20% through the program. I end the semester and the year, anxiously looking forward to the new year and new challenges that will be brought. Thank you to all of you for reading my posts and I look forward to keeping you up to date in the new year!. Happy holidays and Happy New Year!


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