Thursday, October 27, 2005

I forgot about tests

5 years out of school will do that to you. T minus 30 minutes til my first midterm (Business Statistics). I feel pretty much ready to unleash my stats prowess on this thing. Coming midterms include Operations Management Tuesday morning (open book/open note) and a rumored-to-be-brutal take home group midterm for Microeconomics due Nov 9th. (Seriously, the grapevine is saying the thing will take 20-30 hrs!)

I also had my midterm LEAD feedback session this afternoon. My facilitator and I had a nice discussion about my goals, how I'm progressing, how he and my peers feel I'm doing relative to my goals and the objectives of the course, and how that stacks up with how I think I'm doing. There are certainly some things I dislike about LEAD, but in general I've been really impressed with the content and presentation of the program and I think something to be gained for everyone.

This week has kinda sucked trying to get back on track. Just as I was getting into a rhythm school-wise, I take off for a long weekend in San Diego. The weekend was a lot of fun, although the sun failed to appear AT ALL during my time in SoCal. My friends' wedding was really nice, I got to see some old friends from Richmond, and I also had time to visit with my SD friends. Anyway, I had a boatload of homework and housework waiting for me when I got home Monday evening and I've been playing catch up ever since (and catch up is not easy when in B-school). I'm glad I'm not planning on going anywhere for Thanksgiving, because I would be in bad shape trying to play catch up right before finals.

Congrats to the World Series Champions, the Chicago White Sox! After a nervous September, those guys played lights out in October. Pretty magical run. I'm bummed I'm not going to be able to make it downtown tomorrow for the ticker tape parade.

Off to my test, wish me luck :)

Monday, October 17, 2005

Back in a suit

Since recruiting officially kicks off for first years today and I have three presentations to attend (Reebok, Pepsico/QTG, and Jim Beam), I had to pull my suit out of the back of my closet for the first time since MBA interviews. Today is going to be a long day. Met up with my Microecon study group at 8 am, then met with a 2nd year who interned at Nike for breakfast at 9 am. Now I'm trying to squeeze in some blogging and homework before the first presentation at 11:45. My last presentation will end this evening at 8 pm. Not sure when (if) I'll be able to work out today, let alone make sure all my homework is done for classes this week. I also need to get a head start on next week's readings and problem sets, since I'll be in San Diego Friday-Monday. I think I'll be lucky to average 5 hrs of sleep per night this week.

Life moves pretty fast here at the GSB. Recruiting is starting up, midterms will happen by the end of the month, and Thanksgiving is right around the corner. Wazzu was on a semester schedule, so this quarter schedule is a totally new concept for me. Plus, all my classes meet only once per week....that is only 10 sessions of class before finals!

As so many people have said, an MBA is all about time management. There are so many different things you can do in your two years at school. TOO MANY THINGS. It is physically impossible to do everything. I feel pretty fortunate that I realized this early on. I've perfected my ability to say no. If I get an email that is non-priority (i.e. about anything other than class, recruiting/networking specifically related to what I want to do, or the three clubs I joined), I don't let it linger in my inbox as a potential distraction. It gets deleted. Might I miss out on some fun stuff? Sure, but participating may have come at a cost to my priorities. I'm not willing to make that trade-off. MBA admissions officers aren't kidding when they say you should have a pretty good idea of what you'd like to do after your MBA coming in to the program. If I wasn't fairly certain of the industry & function I'd like to pursue, I think I'd be extremely overwhelmed right now.

Time management also means making time for "sanity" activities. For me, this means not letting my schedule sacrifice some quality time at the gym at least 5x per week. This means not attending every single GSB social event so that I can spend quality time with my non-GSB friends. This means scheduling myself some alone time, even if it's only 15 minutes, every day. This means keeping Saturday sacred for some quality time on my couch watching college football (even when the WSU Cougars decide to break my heart 3 weeks in a row).

That being said, let the recruiting insanity begin!

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Holy crap

The White Sox are going to the World Series! Awesome. Going to try to get tickets when they go on sale Tuesday. Won't be in town for Game 1 or 2 (headed back to San Diego for a wedding), but it's worth a shot to get tickets to a possible Game 6 or 7. I can be an adopted Sox fan for the World Series, right? (Sorry M's)

Sunday, October 09, 2005

I should be studying

But this weekend I've done everything but study. Yesterday was filled with college football viewing and reading a non-school related novel I couldn't put down. Last night, my friend and I hit the Vic Theater to see Jim Gaffigan do his stand up comedy act. Very, very funny, and the audience was totally into it because Comedy Central was there taping his act for a special to air in January.

Today I hit the gym, then my friend and I went and saw Proof. Excellent movie, I highly recommend it. Gwyneth Paltrow is amazing, she gave a raw and completely vulnerable performance. But she's not the only star of the movie. The University of Chicago also plays a big role, and the shots of campus (and the city) are beautiful.

I think I'm actually going to study now. Ops management homework awaits.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Shouldn't complain

I hardly have room to complain about my long day. My stats professor lectures from 8:30-11:30 am and does the same routine all over again from 6-9 pm. At least I get to sit and listen!

Long day ahead of me

Got out of bed at 6 am this morning so I could make it down to Hyde Park by 7:30 for the GSB Women's Welcome Back Breakfast. Way too early for my taste (but I understand they have to accommodate people with 8:30 class). I am not a morning person, but the breakfast and the company was worth getting out of bed so early.

I was up until midnight last night working on stats homework, then I called it quits knowing that I would have time today between the breakfast and my first class (LEAD @ 1:30) to finish it up. After LEAD, I'll have a break for dinner then Stats from 6-9. That is a nearly 14 hour day at HPC, gotta love it. I'm tired, it's been a long week. Don't think I'm gonna make it to TNDC ( Thursday Night Drinking Club) tonight. I'm glad I don't have class tomorrow. I can sleep in, hit the gym during the mid-morning lull, have some lunch, then come down to HPC in the afternoon for a group meeting and an appearance by Jack Welch (brought to campus by the GSB Distinguished Speaker Series committee).

Monday, October 03, 2005


Yeah, I know I suck. The past week and a half I've been telling myself anytime I have a spare 30 minutes I'll throw together I quick post to the blog, which is pretty much how I'll need to do it going forward if I'm going to keep this thing up. So Friday afternoon I have a break and sit down for a quick blog to find...Blogger down for maintenance! Just my luck.

Classes are going great. It's a completely different experience from undergrad. I'm so much more motivated to actually learn. What a difference a few years of life in the "real world" makes! Context is cool. Plus, if these three professors are any indication of the overall quality of the faculty, I think I'm in for a great two years. I never would have guessed that a three hour Thursday night statistics class could hold my attention. (Especially when planning to head to TNDC for beverage consumption and socializing immediately after class!)

I'm enjoying the group work; it certainly alleviates much of the pressure on the homework front. The only thing that sucks is schedule coordination. Location, class conflicts, etc. are an issue even with a group of only 3 or 4 people. I surrendered to the fact that although I only have classes three days a week, most weeks I'll be at Hyde Park Center Monday through Friday. Which is actually OK since I get a lot more work done here than I do at home, assuming I'm in a study room and not just hanging out in the Winter Garden. There are as many distractions in the Winter Garden as there are at home....way too easy to spend an hour or three socializing (which is nice in the rare event you have an hour to kill and nothing to do).

I am glad I was cheap and decided not to get a parking permit. I'm usually able to find a ride with a fellow north sider or my friend who works for the law school. If not, I drive myself down and to date I've had no problems finding street parking pretty much any time of day. It's easier early in the morning, of course, but even later in the day there are spots to be found as long as I allow myself time to find them.

First year recruiting doesn't start for another two weeks, but we are constantly being reminded to "mind the gap". Resume reviews, mocktail, explore more sessions, etc are all in full swing. I'm feeling pretty good about my resume, but I'll probably have a few more folks review it. I had a meeting with a career coach last week and I've got some tasks to follow up on in order to get a good start on my off campus search (since I'm not headed down the well trodden path to i-banking or consulting). The nice thing is that I've already found someone who has similar career interests to join forces with, and I'm getting involved in the entertainment & media club and much of the work I'll do for them will overlap nicely with my internship search.

I've got a group meeting for Microeconomics in 20 minutes and I need to look over the assignment again, so I'm off.