Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Before I started at Wharton, a (now) second year described her first year experience as trying to drink water from a fire hose. At the time I thought she was being a little dramatic. I thought it couldn't be that bad. After all I'd been warned about situations before and survived (like the proverbial, "look to your left, look to your right - one of these people won't be here at graduation.") No matter how bad a situatuation was I always perservered. Surely Wharton wouldn't be any different, I thought. Surely it couldn't be that bad.

Well. It can be that bad.

I was FINE until this week. And then they layered on all this school work and getting job and extracurricular stuff. And now I'm running around like an unorganized chicken with her head cut off. This truly is hell week.

Company Informations Sessions started this week. I've decided to focus on banking for the summer. I'm leaning towards capital markets/structured finance or public finance. The banking EISs (Employer Information Sessions) are intense.

On a more upbeat note, I didn't chicken out for my Follies audition, and I got a call back. The second round of auditions kicks it up a notch. Auditions last 12 hours on Friday and Saturday. I've already overcome a major hurdle, so I'm not as nervous for this round of auditions. Hopefully it will go well.

Friday, September 24, 2004

The MGEC has left the building.

Thank goodness the first exam is over with. It was definitely challenging. Every time I thought I had a question down, I would get to the end of the question and have a WTF?? moment. I did buy shoes last weekend, so maybe the good shoe karma will still be in effect.

By a unanimous decision (well there were no other choices...), I am Cohort L's Historian! I think I'll have fun decorating our home room and writing the newsletter and such. License to make fun of people is always a good thing.

Black Tuesday approacheth... For some reason every core professor has an affinity for October 5. Because they all have something due on that day. That fact, coupled with the ramping up of the recruiting season has taken my stress level up a couple of notches. I had a small panic attack on Wednesday when I realized I didn't know about 95 of the recruiting events going on next week. And it seemed everyone else was on the ball. AND I still have to draft my resume for review. And do my homework and reading. And the marketing case. And the accounting case. And try out for Follies (thanks for the joke Naveen; if I'm feeling racy I'll use that one!).

All this while trying not to fail out of Wharton. It will be an interesting week!

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

For our dining pleasure, Huntsman Hall is equipped with two Au Bon Pain franchises. These two establishments have to be the most inefficient restaurants on the planet. Never in my life have I witnessed the art of sandwich making take so damn long.

And WHY, if you know when classes switch, WHY would you run out of coffee at the switching time? Wouldn't you start making coffee about ten minutes before the switch in anticipation of the rush? Am I wrong here? And wouldn't you maybe start making your most popular sandwiches around 11:30 to anticipate the lunch rush? Wouldn't you recognize that slow, crappy-ass service causes you to lose sales?

Maybe it's just me.

Oh and since I'm ranting, I'll add a few more to my list. Turn off your damn cell phone before class/ or presentations. And if you need to leave a presentation early sit on the end of the row - don't sit in the middle so you have to step on people's feet with your 3 in heels as you noisily leave the IB presentation (and uh, no I'm not talking about any one in particular :)...) And, genius, if your Palm reminder keeps going off during a presentation (like 10 times in a 2 hour block) how 'bout you do something novel, like DISMISS THE REMINDER SO IT STOPS GOING OFF?? How about that one?

But maybe it's just me....

Monday, September 20, 2004

A second year suggested recently that a first year MBA student should let extremely needy people know that he or she will not be talking to them for the next two years. This should happen AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. I would agree with that advice. Needy people can be annoying when all you are trying to do is get your work done so you don't fail out of Wharton. But I digress...

I feel like I'm on the cusp of the state of overwhelmness (is that a word?) - like if I deviate at all from my to do list I will descend into the world of "Oh, Sh!t." I'm not scared yet - but I could be there by the end of the week!

As of today, I'm the only person running for the illustrious position of Historian for my cohort. Tonight I'll prepare for my 30 second "Please vote for me -PLEEEEASE!" spot. I'll make sure my spiel is sans whining though.

My audition for Follies is on Saturday. So I have to pick out a song and prepare a joke (anyone know any good ones?). I absolutely SUCK at telling jokes, so I'm going to have to kick ass on the other areas. My throat is starting to feel a little scratchy, so I'm doing everything in my power to stave off infection. There's a nasty bug making the rounds in Huntsman Hall. You'd think that by the age of 26 or 27, MBA students would have mastered the art of covering their mouths, but alas, they have not. So I'm all about Echinachea and Vitamin C this week.

Friday, September 17, 2004

A five minute commute is SOO much better than a 90 minute one. I can now wake up at what used to be my "Oh my God, I'm gonna be late" time and still be early to class. I absolutely love the extra 90 mins of sleep.

Next week is the first big week for grades. We have a MGEC (Econ) midterm, Stats "quiz," Marketing Case, and Accounting online homework. Even though it's a bit to manage, I still feel like it's doable. I am so glad I pushed Finance. But we'll see how I feel at the end of the week.

Extracurricular activities are ramping up. I've volunteered to help out with AAMBAA (African-American MBA Assoc), Net Impact, and the Volunteer Admission Committee. I'm running to be my Cohort's Historian (which means, if I win, I write a newsletter, and keep record of the goings on in the cohort - it also means I get to make fun of my cohort mates in writing - wish me luck!) And unless I chicken out, I hope to try out for the Follies next week.

I also plan to see if I can get on the grant evaluation committee for the Summer Public Interest Fund (SPIF). Here's a website blurb on what SPIF is, "The fund, financed entirely by fellow students pledging 1% of their summer salaries, represents an important commitment by the Wharton community to those students who work in the public interest. " The Fund apparently uses people with nonprofit experience to evaluate the applications for support.

So I'm getting pretty busy. What's interesting is that there are about 20 other things I want to get involved with. But you can't do it all. I've decided to commit myself to the things I'm most passionate about, and the things that are completely new to me. Even though it sounds like a lot, I believe it's manageable. Now all I need to do is find time to find a job... oh s&^%...

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

It is AMAZING how quickly your calendar fills up here. I'm booked SOLID until this evening. Between 4 and 6 today I scheduled to be in 3 different places. It's crazy.

Given the hectic extracurricular schedule, I'm extremely glad I pushed Corporate Finance to the spring. Wharton has two standard schedules, the Red Schedule and the Blue Schedule. The schedules are identical, except in the Red Schedule, you take 6 classes your first two quarters. The Blue Schedule allows you to defer Corporate Finance until the spring. The administration suggests anyone with a "quantitative concerns" take the Blue Schedule. Although I don't consider myself a quant weakling, I did select the blue schedule. I just think it's better to take 5 classes instead of 6. Maybe it's just me. I think a lot of people let their ego make their schedule decisions - it's like they think they'll be less of a Whartonite if they take the Blue Schedule. All I know is I'm glad I go to bed before midnight every night. I don't know if I could do that if I had an extra class.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Long time no update. Over Labor Day weekend, I moved closer to school (I'm living in the Spruce Hill section of University City/West Philly). I had set up my utilities a couple of months ago so that everything was working when I got to my new apartment. Well the phone guy came early and couldn't get in - so no phone for me. No phone means no internet (I had to wait to move to set up my DSL so I didn't have a switching cost) thus I've been incommunicado. But tomorrow I get a phone line, so the updates will occur more regularly.

The first week of classes went pretty well. I had some mishaps with ordering books and coursepacks (readings or notes the professors put together) online - in the future I will definitely be schlepping to wherever to get my school materials. The slight inconvenience is much less than the MAJOR inconvenience of not getting your books when you need them.

And it seems God was smiling on me during my accounting placement exam. By the grace of God, I placed into the quarter long financial accounting class. I'm not sure how that one happened, but I'm grateful that it did.

The volume of couse work still seems manageable. I don't feel like I'm behind or anything. I realize that when some of the group projects kick in, I may feel differently.

I am a little upset that I missed the first big party of the year, Disorientation, or as it is affectionately known, The FOAM Party. I've heard many amusing stories about my classmates behavior in the Foam, but I can't repeat it. What happens in the Foam, stays in the Foam.

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