A Great Start

After moving to Columbus last Sunday, my schedule has been nothing short of jam-packed!  I attended the Grad student orientation on Monday to better orient myself with campus after missing the MAcc orientation the previous week.  Several hundred first-year grad students crammed into a lecture hall in Independence Hall to listen to a variety of speakers including President Gee.  I felt that the orientation was well organized and a great learning experience.

On Tuesday morning, I attended the MAcc boot camp.  We were initially given an overview of Fisher Connect (the main job database used to sign up for on-campus interviews and a variety of other career tools) and we were then presented with several panels of speakers ranging from experienced public accountants to HR staff to accountants working outside of public accounting.  It was mainly an open forum to ask questions regarding the interview process and to get more details on what a career in public accounting is like.

Wednesday was the first day of classes and because I live a couple of miles off-campus, I decided to buy a green ‘C pass’ to be able to park on campus.  After arriving on campus, it took me roughly a half-hour to find a parking space.  I admit that I arrived on campus at a terrible time and was not very familiar with all of the lots.  Parking on campus went much smoother the rest of the week after I knew where to go and how to more efficiently look for open spots.  My classes all seemed to go smooth and my professors were very knowledgeable (more on this in a later post).

Thursday and Friday were filled with homework, getting everything set up on Fisher Connect and a mock job fair.  And of course Saturday was the Buckeyes’ game…. another shutout for the Bucks.

Orientation, and finding a job

Orientation was great. I will spare the nitty gritty details, as they have been covered, but it was lot of time learning about the program and what is expected of us, as well as a lot of time spent figuring out how we are going to get jobs in this lovely economy. It really was a HUGE help, and the networking tips, as well as other career search tips have already proved invaluable.

We had a boot camp, with a lot of Big 4 and regional firm employees serving as a panel to allow us to ask questions. This has been my favorite day of the program so far, I really learned a lot, and the networking/ability to speak with recruiters has been fantastic so far. I should be hearing back within the next week as to where I will be interviewing.

Classes started on Wednesday, so it was nice to get that monkey off my back,  and also nice that it was a short week, and I was done by Thursday. Sarah has been in Denver all week for training, so I have had the house to myself. She flies back into Columbus this evening at something like 11:30, which coincides with her parents arrival for the weekend to visit. It will definitely be nice to have company, and we are looking forward to taking her parents around tomorrow afternoon to show them the madness that is an Ohio State pre-game tailgate.

At some point, hopefully soon, I am thinking of letting her write a part of a few entries, so anyone with a fiance or significant other can read her comments about the experience of going to grad school as a +1.

Hope everyone has a great weekend, and GO BUCKS!

The PreMAcc Seminar

Forgive me if I’m repeating myself, but I can’t remember if I mentioned my undergrad degree in my last post. So here it is again, I graduated  from the University of Texas with a bachelor of science in Electrical Engineering.

So how much accounting training did I have before deciding to switch career to accounting? nada~ I took 2 intro accounting classes at a local community college and that’s it. I did take 6 calculus classes in undergrad but that probably doesn’t make too much of a difference, does it? To close up the gap and be able to catch up to the rest of my peers, fortunately there’s this summer intensive accounting bootcamp called PreMAcc and I’m here to share with you what we went through in just 6 weeks.

The seminar is divided into 3 modules: Financial Accounting, Cost Accounting, and Auditing.

Financial Accounting

In a nutshell, 3 quarters worth of intermediate accounting packed into 13 days including 2 Saturdays. Sounds scary and crazy at first, but you come out of it knowing more accounting than you ever did. Some notable topics that really opened my eyes were: Revenue Recognition, Time Value of Money, Debts, Statement of Cashflow, etc. Make sure you learn these concepts well, because they will keep coming back not only in your future accounting classes, but also finance classes. Having seen these concepts once makes it so much easier to grasp the advanced topics and if you fear that you might be getting rusty, fear not, the rigorous schedule of PreMAcc have long carved the concepts in your memory. They will come back very quickly!

Cost Accounting

So you’ve been through the toughest module and everything from here on out is all downhills. You learn about different costing methods, CVP, Decision Making, Master Budget, Capital Budgeting, etc. Here you get a taste of private accounting, in other words, what managers see inside a company that enable them to make decisions and evaluate different strategies. This module was only half as long as the first one and lasted 7 days. This module is fun because you get to turn the table around and gain an understanding of why some managers do certain things.

Auditing

Before this module I had no idea what auditors do. All I know is back when I was still working in IT consulting, whenever there’s auditors on site we’d have to be really careful of what we say and sometimes we even stop our development because of Sarbane-Oxley. I’ve also heard “horror” stories from friends who are/were doing auditing in public accounting about their 60-70 hours weeks and how much they hate their “busy work”. All that’s changed after going through this module. We started by learning why there is the need of the profession “auditing” in the first place. Then we went about how an auditor should understand the risks his/her client’s particular business is exposed to, how to plan the audit to evaluate the internal controls and assess the chances that the client’s financial statements might be misstated due to error or fraud, and last but not least, the liabilities auditors are facing and proper documentations.

Having completed the PreMAcc both boosted my confidence and sharpened my accounting skills so I’m ready for the real deal. Feel free to drop me any questions if you think you’re going to take the PreMAcc. I can even give you a preview of the professors that you’re going to meet. All three of them are great, intelligent individuals who know the stuff inside out.

Finally, I want to give a shout out to my fellow PreMAccers: Chia-Lung, Ya-Ting, Bobby, Bennett, Dustin, Nadia (our fellow blogger), Yang Yang, Wei, Qi, Lisi, John, Peishan, Michael, and Stephen. Good Job Guys!!!

Fisher Orientation, it begins…….!

Hello Fisher Friends!

Thank you to all the Fisher staff and professors for organizing such a complete, resourceful and fun orientation program. It was a very warm welcome and we certainly appreciate all the effort and time put on the event. There were many things I enjoyed from Orientation, but here are my top 10 memories of orientation:

  1. International orientation: Very important to understand cultural differences and how to overcome with them. Take advantage of all the resources for international students (English and American culture classes) and let’s succeed as international students!!
  2. Warm Welcome: Was choosing Fisher College of Business the right choice? YES!!! Congratulations!! We are in an outstanding program within a wonderful university, and with people willing to help as succeed and have the best experience ever.
  3. Going Global: It was fun to see how Fisher students are gaining unique experiences around the world and exciting to know all the options the Office of International Programs have to offer!
  4. Career Management: Impressive display of resources and personal approach that every staff member in the career management offers to students. Definitely something to take advantage of!
  5. Leadership and Professional Development: Need to develop leadership and professional skills? YOU WILL, get ready for Professors Inks and Rucci’s input in your careers!
  6. Key note Speakers:Three successful professionals: Neil Currie (global perspective for MBA’s), Craig Morrison, (how to succeed as MBA’s), and Dr. James Waldroop (career leader assessment).
  7. Networking: Let’s be ready to network at ALL the times! Carry business cards and resumes, talk to guest speakers, have your elevator speech ready. We never know who is mysteriously recruiting in Fisher!
  8. Discovering ourselves and team members: Exciting to discover several aspects of our personality, career paths and social styles. Teamwork is learning about the differences and understanding them! Good Luck Teams!
  9. Summit Vision:Extremely fun and adventurous! Great exercise and effective tool for teambuilding J.
  10. How to survive MBA life: Basics in excel, how to present a report, how to elaborate an answer, time management; and learning from second year student’s experience was tremendously useful.

Good luck to Everyone and welcome to an exciting adventure!!

MBA Candidate 2011

Back to School

It’s the night before my first day of business school and I don’t know how to describe my feelings.  Does “reluctant anticipation” make sense to anyone?

Don’t get me wrong…  I am definitely excited about the start of classes.  This is something I have wanted to do for a long time.  Earning my MBA from Fisher College will provide me the business skills necessary to think both critically and strategically about leadership and management.  What more could I ask, right?

Well, I am reluctant to begin this journey because for the first time in my life I am behind on schoolwork before classes have officially begun.  You might be wondering, “How is it possible to be behind in something that hasn’t actually started?”   Don’t worry, this is not some theoretical question.  (Remember, my personality is ESTP… theories and conceptual problems bore me.)  The answer is really quite simple: three out of my five classes have work due on the first day of class.

The good news is that I am almost finished with my homework and I will be ready to dive into my MBA experience head first.  Wish me luck.

Joe

So it begins…Really

Welcome, to my blog!

Well, it has been hell of a time! Almost 3 weeks now in the US, things have been great. First of all the MBA 2011 finished their ‘orientation’ last week, which I hope was summed up by the background song played through a video showing stills from the Summit Vision, ‘I don’t scare easy’. I guess Prof. Wruck had a message in there.

Summit vision camp:

  • Weeeeaaah! Thats what most people sang the whole day zipping and jumping and falling from great heights.
  • Brought the teams closer, nothing better to build trust than to just put your life in someone’s (or the 5-6 odd people trying to lift you and pass you through the smallest of webs) hands and exploring life beyond the ‘zone of comfort’.
  • All in all great fun, never thought would have zip-lined or jumped off the ledge on the giant swing.

Consulting Boot Camp:

  • Really covered all there is to consulting in depth and had industry perspective.
  • Good networking opportunity.
  • Had 2 amazing sessions with great professors. Prof. Barney and his hot-dog business, you have to have to try a hot-dog at Barney’s. And what can I say about our mission impossible man Prof. Ogelvee. Talk about being creative, one of the best presentations I have ever seen.

New year’s party:

  • Full of fun.
  • Lots of alcohol.
  • Met one of the most intriguing personalities that you can meet on any given day. A frenchman who taught ‘english’ in China, talk about being cosmopolitan.

Well, that was all last week. This week started with pages and pages of reading to be done before classes begin tomorrow. I had to actually spend over 3 hours to make sure my schedule was in place and I didn’t miss anything important. The iPhone comes in handy again. (FYI: I am unofficial salesman for Apple, you’ll hear more soon enough).

The quarter starts tomorrow and I am very excited. Over the course of the quarter I’ll be sharing my perspective on life at Fisher, so stay tuned.

Moving to Columbus

First, let me introduce myself. My name is Kyle Ward-Dahl. I decided back in January that I would be attending the Fisher College of Business to earn my Masters of Accounting. Since then, the time has seemingly flown by. I graduated from Christopher Newport University (a small liberal arts school in the Virginia Beach area) and then lived and worked (mostly worked it seemed) in Northern Virginia/DC all summer.

My fiancee Sarah and I moved to the Columbus area Friday the 11th. Sarah will be joining me on this adventure. She found a great job in HR with Dish Network. For those of you with significant others, even though the Ohio job market is tough, it CAN be done. Hopefully her working can help pay for pizzas on those late nights studying 🙂

Sarah and I decided we wanted to go to the USC game, so we bought tickets from a scalper (not the cheapest way to do it) and headed to the game. There is just something special about big-time college football. OSU fans set a new Ohio Stadium attendance record that night, and boy was it loud. That game was awesome, even though the ending wasn’t what we were hoping for.

We moved into our duplex just north of campus, and spent literally the entire weekend finding furniture for our place.  Kitchen table/chairs, mattress, dressers etc. Most of the stuff we found either on Craigslist, or got really good deals on, which we were both excited about. I am currently searching for a bike, as campus is a little far to walk. Orientation started early Tuesday the 14th, and a wrap up of that will follow in my next post.

Cheers

Orientation wrap-up

Hey everyone.  My name is Joe Fahrendorf and I’m a 1st year MBA student at the Fisher College of Business (FCOB).  As the second week of orientation officially comes to a close, I finally have a moment to reflect on the previous 12 days and write my first blog entry.

The FCOB faculty have kept us incredibly busy throughout orientation.  A few of my activities included:

  • A case study with Professor Jay Dial.
  • Team building activities at Summit Vision.  (I was blown away at how well my core team operated as one.  Hopefully this is a sign of more good things to come.)
  • A Myers-Briggs typology test.  (According to the results I am an Extraversion, Sensing, Thinking, Perceiving “ESTP” personality.)
  • A practice job interview with the career development office.
  • Networking events with companies such as AEP, Eli Lilly & Company, Kimberly-Clark, Limited Brands, Nationwide, NetJets, P&G, Target, The Scotts Company, Whirlpool and several others.
  • A boot camp focused on careers in consulting.  (For a day and a half, we listened to several industry experts discuss the pros and cons of the industry and we were given the opportunity to network with representatives from Accenture, Deloitte, McKinsey and other top consulting firms.)
  • Organizing my apartment at Fisher Commons.
  • Golfing.  (This has been a great way to meet classmates.  The talent level ranges from scratch golfers to pure novices.  Yesterday I shot an 85 on the Grey course, but still lost to a classmate by several strokes.  Hopefully I’ll find the time to play the Scarlet course before the cold weather arrives.)

Overall, I would say that orientation has been a huge success.  I’m excited that classes are about to begin and I look forward to meeting more classmates.  Twelve days ago I literally knew 3 people in the area and now I know roughly a hundred.

Keep checking my blog for new posts. My goal is to submit 2 or 3 entries per week.  If you have any questions or comments, let me know.

JF

Kid’s story: Intro

An introduction

Timeline: Sunday, noon-ish

I see: gloomy clouds, Stephen Colbert, and… is that a spider on my wall?

I hear: “Huh!” to the beat

I smell: pine

I feel: sleepy

OK, so first let’s get the less favorable (i.e. whining) part out of the way. My first weeks at Fisher have been marked by somewhat of a post-9/11 feeling, in which everyone’s glad about their lives but those lives are marked by fear. I suppose it’s a successful teaching style, but I truly look forward to getting the facts and figures in class rather than a constant paraphrasing of “today’s world is impossibly tough, ye be warned”.

On the upside, so many good things have happened that I’m going to have to buy a new notebook soon. Highlights: the apartment’s looking nice, my health hasn’t been an issue, and people actually remember my name.

My personal opinions on some of these weeks’ events are as follows:

  • Summit vision was OK (body count = 0.0) and it really achieved its purpose of bringing our team closer.
  • The presentation by the second-years definitely has room for improvement. Notes taken: none.
  • I got lost in the Thompson library, and ended up in the top floor. If anyone ever needs a really cool study place, look no further: that’s the place to be.
  • Consulting boot camp was good, but there must have been something wrong with the room on Friday, as everyone (including myself) was dozing off all the time. It was quite a shame, as the information was very useful. As a footnote, Oglevee is one of the few people I’ve met in life with just the right amount of insanity in him.
  • Kudos to the organizers of Friday’s party at Fisher Commons (which was dubbed “the FC” last night), a perfect closing act to the week; food was great, sodas were plentiful, and the music was just right. Due to the blog’s policies, I can’t compliment the alcoholic beverages.

This is just a first experiment. Expect further chapters in the story in the upcoming days. Comments are most welcome and encouraged.

“… looking for the beauty that never fades” – Sasha & Junkie XL

Offcampus.osu.edu

Hi, everyone!

My name is Lily and I am a newcomer not only to OSU but to the United States as well. I am absolutely thrilled to share my exciting American experience with you! Please follow me as I embark on this blogging mission! Although everything is new to me, I find life in America to be fascinating and everyone is so friendly here. So I’d like to label my first month here in America as the “Honey Moon Stage.”

Before moving to the USA, I had to find an off-campus house online. I found the OSU website to be one of the most resourceful and helpful websites in my search. I strongly recommend this website http://www.offcampus.osu.edu/ to those of you who prefer off-campus life. You can find various kinds of houses as well as roommates through that website. In fact, I actually found my roommate Jessica through this website. Jessica is an American and she is also in the MLHR program at Fisher. She has been teaching me American cooking, culture, language, movies and games. She also introduced me to her family and friends who made me feel welcome. We went shopping at Polaris Mall, Barnes & Noble and Kroger. Now I am no longer a lonely international student, and I feel at home in this city and enjoy the life here. Moreover,  I feel at home in our warm and cozy apartment, which is full of lots of food and furniture. In addition, our apartment is very conducive to studying because it is quiet! I want to thank  OSU and Jessica for making my transition to the United States an easy one.

Jess and I also attended the MLHR orientation together this week. I will never forget the Geocaching Activity that we did at orientation.Although the Geocaching activity was exhausting and at times frustrating, I appreciated the activity because I got the chance to get to know a few of my fellow classmates, John and Brian.

Ultimately, this activity got me thinking about my own personal goals, teamwork, and motivation.I am now always thinking about how to set the team goal and my individual goal, how to assign jobs, how to cultivate intelligence and a spirit of commitment etc. By the way, this is not the only one activity that enlightened me in Fisher, there are many activities held by Fisher that motivate me to explore more about life, study and work.Furthermore, I will look forward to participating in many future Fisher activities.

I look forward to receiving your comments on my blog and to sharing more with you  about my life here. Next time, I will tell you about my close friend and classmate Eva. And I will also tell you about my experience with the GPO! Signing off now to take a relaxing bubble bath (Thanks to Jess who taught me what a bubble bath was and who bought me my very own bubble bath!!!!)