Posts Tagged 'individual'

The Thirst for Knowledge?

A picture’s worth a thousand words.

When anyone asks me how this quarter is going, my answer is: I feel like I’m drinking from a fire hose.  Believe you me: MIT (where the above pic is taken) doesn’t have exclusive rights on this metaphor.  Welcome to spring quarter of your first year in the full-time MBA program at Fisher!  Just when I thought I was getting the hang of things, I was reminded of two things: “you don’t know what you don’t know” and, actually, ignorance *is* bliss.

Let me clarify a few things for those of you that read these blogs regularly: (1) MLHR is not the only graduate business program at Fisher, (2) there are actually more full-time MBA bloggers than MLHR bloggers, and (3) work load definitely varies by program.

FTMBA’s are B-U-S-Y.  That said, I think the Working Professional MBAs have it worse.  They have to go to work all day and then high-tail it over to Gerlach Hall to sit in classes from 6-10pm each evening.  How and when they do their homework, reading, group projects, and presentations, I don’t know.  Unless they’re “multitasking” in the office (you know who you are), they get to spend their weekends studying.  Blech.  Kudos to them . . . I couldn’t do it.

Back to being a FTMBA . . .

This quarter, I have an enormous amount of reading to do – constantly.  There is no ebb and flow.  Spring quarter brings the final two core classes: Strategy & Global Macro.  (As an aside: the elective classes I’m taking are Service Operations and Sustainability Marketing.)  The macro-econ course requires I subscribe to The Economist and get quizzed weekly on the content.  The entire magazine is fair game.  Sound hellish?  I thought so too!  I was wrong.  I *love* this magazine.  Here’s why . . .

To date, I proudly claimed to a member of the apathetic, ignorant American masses.  Thanks to Prof Kistruck’s mandate, I’m a person that has some clue about what’s happening in the world and how current global events affect business.  I live here after all  – so I might as well understand how my life is being affected.  The world gets smaller by the day and global awareness is really critical.  It’s about time I got a clue.  Yay me!

Outside of classes, much is happening around the Fisher College of Business (FCOB).  Officer elections are taking place in student groups, end of year summits and banquets are being held, and the weather is slowly improving (which should result in strong attendance at the Fisher 5K this weekend and the upcoming Fisher Spring Games).  I assumed leadership roles in various organizations next year: President of the Fisher Graduate Women in Business, VP of Innovate Columbus in Innovation Fisher, and Treasurer of Fisher’s Association of Marketing Professionals.  My Fisher Board Fellows assignment is supporting COSI next year and I’ve agreed to help with Fisher Follies.  YAY!

Regardless of your interests, there are plenty of ways for you to get involved and participate in the Fisher community.  This morning, I was inspired by the words of the founder of Fisher Board Fellows, Wake Norris.  “Remember to unpack.” He stressed the importance of unpacking and living where you are when you arrive someplace new.  This advice applies to you as well as me.  When you arrive at your program, how will you get involved?  Be a part of your community?  The choice is yours and the options are plentiful.

I am really excited about the coming year even if it means lack of sleep.  I figure: This only happens once.  I’m going to make the most of it.

“Stay thirsty my friends.”  – The Most Interesting Man in the World


Holding On and Letting Go

B-school life is full of times to hold on or to let go.  Lately it seems I continually face the decision to hone my tenacity or choose the way of Lao Tsu and “go with the flow”.  Insider hint: the Tao of Eve needs some major work.

I’m really not one to make new year’s resolutions because I can never seem to stick with them.  When I fail, it becomes one more thing to gnaw on my conscience.  This year, however, things are different.  During break, I realized it is really important for me to let things go and I resolved to make a concerted effort to do so during 2011 (and beyond).  A few things prompted my decision:

(1) Grades: One thing you’ll hear time and time again in b-school is that grades don’t matter.  As a first-year, I’ve heard this from various people across disciplines and departments.  I suppose old habits die hard because I waited with great anticipation for my grades to be posted online.  All in all, I did alright and was pretty happy with my results.  But there’s always that one class… in my case, it was Organizational Behavior.  I missed the next letter grade by one point and wasn’t one of the students that was moved up based upon class participation.  “Disappointed” is a fair way to describe my feelings on the situation.  What to do?  Let it go and move forward.  I’m not happy about it but there’s not much I can do to change it at this point.  I could dwell on it and let it affect me or release it and focus on the next term.  I choose to focus on the future.  And, although I realize that grades do matter to me (at least somewhat), I also know that I want to take full advantage of the other opportunities & activities available in the full-time MBA program.

(2) Clutter: If there’s any advice I can give you that will prove helpful, it’s PURGE NOW especially if you’re moving to Columbus from somewhere else.  Downsizing is extremely important to do in advance; you really don’t want to move everything and then realize it doesn’t fit.  In my case, I was faced with the closet storage reality over break.  I finally had time to fully switch my wardrobe from warm weather to cold weather.  I ended up with several bags of trash and six piles of clothes that need to be donated to Goodwill.  Some mementos are worth keeping but all the stuff you have set aside “just in case” should be dumped before you get here.  You won’t have the time to do it when classes begin and you’ll feel so free by ridding yourself of the excess baggage.  Let it go and make room for good things to come into your life.

(3) Rejection: Recruiting season is heading into full swing and I can honestly say I have already gotten my share of rejection.  I *really* don’t need any more.  Realistically, it could be a lot worse.  The good news is that I have a few angles that may pan out.  The ones that didn’t work out really didn’t suit me anyway.  My advice to you is: do your homework and decide what matters most and what you really want.  Have the conversation with your Career Management counselor and make sure your goals are realistic.  If you have a specific target, you can focus all your energy toward that goal.  If you’re anything like me and are unsure, or are switching careers, you might need to spend extra energy and take a path less traveled.  I believe we all want to be wanted and it is normal to feel validated by a potential employer wanting to speak with us.  But when your request for interview is rejected, it doesn’t invalidate you.  In my case, each “no” pushes me closer to a “yes” and the path I trod is not the most worn.  Fisher provides many resources for us to use to build our networks.  Finding the ideal career fit may involve on campus recruiting but it may not.  Some of us choose a path less common.  At Fisher, faculty, staff, and alumni are very willing to help each one of us discover our way.  They really see us as individuals.  Personally, I’m letting go of the “no”s and holding on to the perfect fit being out there.  It just takes some of us longer to find it.

This quarter proves to be getting better by the minute.  To gain momentum and keep the right pace, I resolve to hold on to what’s truly important and let go of the things that can slow me down.

The characteristic of a genuine heroism is its persistency.  All men have wandering impulses, fits and starts of generosity. But when you have resolved to be great, abide by yourself, and do not weakly try to reconcile yourself with the world. The heroic cannot be the common, nor the common the heroic.  – Ralph Waldo Emerson


Under the Weather

Actually, if you talk to a number of people in the program, you’d hear the opposite: they’re “so over the weather”.  Yes, friends, we’ve just started to get some more snow over the past two days.  Heh.  In the melodic words of Bachman-Turner Overdrive: “You ain’t seen nothin’ yet”.

As for me, since starting on our student health insurance plan, I have encountered three occasions that required prescription meds.  The most recent occurred this week.  The quarter started on Monday and by Tuesday afternoon in Cost Accounting, I could tell my cold was developing into something more.  I hoped for the best (2pm) and opted to see how things developed.  By 8pm that night, I was miserable and opted to inform my roommate of that fact every couple of minutes.  He knew I was sick but had no idea to what extent . . . until I grabbed a flashlight and had him glance at the back of my throat.  Sparing you the details, I’ll leave it at: it was quite a mess.

Here’s the thing: as students, we have health coverage for doctors appointments and unanticipated illness.  We can make appointments to be seen at the Wilce Health Center… which is fine and dandy as long as you don’t need to be seen outside of the hours of 8am-5pm M-F or 8am-noon on Saturdays (unless there’s a football game and then you’re out of luck).  Appointments are meant to be scheduled in advance.  Unfortunately, many of us can’t pre-plan when we’re going to really need to see a doctor.  Considering that, you can call in the morning and try to get seen the same day.  I had to do that in October and it happened to work out extremely well.  That time, I called at 7:30am and got a lab appt followed by a doctor’s appointment within about an hour.  The process there went like clockwork: all ran on time and I was in and out within about an hour.  There’s a pharmacy on site and I was good to go.  That was October . . .

. . . flash back to the nastiness of my throat infection on a Tuesday night ….

After seeing the mess my throat became, my roommate was a bit freaked out and worried (it really was nasty) and believed I should seek more immediate medical attention rather than wait until 7:30am and try to score an appointment at the health center.  By this time (10pm), the alternative treatment options listed on the website had all closed for the day… all except for one: the OSU Medical Center Emergency Room.

Desperate times call for desperate measures . . . but I really did not want to be one of “those people” tying up emergency resources for something non-critical (it’s not like I had a severed arm).  I was really on the fence: my situation was becoming increasingly dire and I didn’t want to be up a proverbial creek the next morning unable to attend class AND unable to get an appointment.  For reassurance, I called the phone number listed and spoke with a delightful woman named Nicole.  She said they’ve treated people with less serious issues; if I wanted to come in to see a doctor I should.  Given that, I opted to give it a go and head over there . . . knowing the wait would likely be a long one.  I wasn’t mistaken.  My roommate, aspiring for sainthood, chose to accompany me.  By 3am we were at a 24-hr CVS picking up my prescriptions.  We woke up at 7am to make it to classes (8:30am start).

The first time I needed to see a doctor was a few days after our insurance began but a couple of weeks before school was actually in session.  I did not have my student insurance card yet and was unsure of how everything worked.  Luckily, there is a lot of pertinent information listed on the OSU web and I was able to reach the website of the administrator of our student insurance plan.  On their site, I registered and gained immediate access to a version of my insurance card.  With a printout in hand, I visited a local urgent care center (the Wilce Health Center wasn’t open; it was a weekend during break) and was taken care of rather promptly.  The only dismay came when getting my prescription filled: if you don’t do it at the pharmacy on campus, the cost is out of pocket.  Luckily, I was still on my previous employer’s insurance and could use their prescription coverage to make ends meet.

So, to quickly summarize: OSU has outstanding facilities and services available to students.  With pre-planning, all works like clockwork.  Unexpected illness can be dealt with rather timely although a small wait could be involved.  Our medical staff and support personnel are professional, courteous, and very patient-oriented.  They are truly a first-class operation at the OSU Medical Center as well as the Wilce Health Center.  I am very happy with the treatment I’ve received and I’m confident you will be too.  To me, it is just one more reason to illustrate the power of a large research university backing an intimate and individual MBA program like Fisher.  You get the best of both worlds.



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