Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Life After Core

When I was going through the MBA Admission process I was bombarded with information from friends and family. Coming from a non-traditional business background, I had just spent seven years working at a law firm, I always appreciated hearing the stories from my friends who had a-typical business experiences. They told me it would be a shock to my system, and boy were the right, but I soon found out it was a good shock.

The first semester at Kelley is all about The Core. From the first day we stepped on campus for orientation, the second years bombarded us with horror stories of the core and at the same time waxed nostalgia about the same three months. I was could something be so loved and so loathed at the same time? My first few days in class taught me how this was possible. While in the beginning I felt like I was driving into a fog storm, not sure of what lied ahead, I was loving the experience. Every graduate business program offers you the basics, but not quite like the Kelley School of Business does. Within the first few weeks I was learning more than I knew was possible. I was not only keeping up with, but understanding Richard Shockley's Finance class, I loved being on the hot seat in Jamie Pratt's Accounting class and looked forward to hearing my classmates' ideas in Matt Semadeni's Management and Strategy class discussions. I think I amazed myself most however, on the morning when as usual I was woken up to my local NPR station. The talking heads were discussing the recession, the Fed and what President Obama's role would be going forward. Prior to my introductory MBA course curriculum, I would have loosely followed what they were saying, but not given it much thought, but instead, here I was, barely awake at 6 am and understanding every thought they had, every idea they conjured up...I had to admit, I shocked myself, all before I brushed my teeth!

As I began my second semester I re-focused myself and have been excited to take classes that relate to my personal and professional passions. I am participating on a GLOBASE trip which has me working with a Ghanaian client who owns two local jewelry stores and which will take me to Ghana for two spectacular weeks over Spring Break. I also love my Negotiations class with Linda Dunn-Jensen, which challenges me each week with resolving real life business problems through in-class simulations with my peers. Later on in the semester, I look forward to taking class with Jonlee Andrews, my Consumer Marketing Academy leader, which will prepare for my summer internship experience.

Life after Core is both bitter and sweet; I miss my teammates and the wonderful group of professors who led us through the first four months of our MBA experience, but I love the fact that I'm now really the captain of my ship for the next year and a half. Looking back on my first semester, aside from attending more tailgates and football games, there's not much else I would change about the experience, and hey, that's what's great about having your second year ahead of you!

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