Thursday 31 May 2007

What to do in 2 years at B-School ?

I am regular reader of business week forums,in particular Alex Chu's posts.
Alex is arguably the best admission consultant I have seen on the board. I would like to quote his very good post here.

Q : You were talking to your younger bro who's headed to a top school, and he asks, how do i make the most out of these two years, what would you say ?

A:
Just make the most of the time you're there by focusing on things you can't do if you're working full-time. Cherish every day that you're not working. Consider it a privilege and blessing that you're basically taking a 2-year sabbatical. You didn't spend upwards of $150K and $150 - 300K in forgone salary to sit alone in your room and read books and do problem sets (if that were the case, you'd just get an online degree). Get fully involved in your b-school community. Learn from people - focus your efforts and time on group projects, stay awake in class discussions, go to as many guest speaker events/student conferences you can go to (you'll learn more from these speakers/alums/industry folk than you'll ever learn in the classroom), get involved in the fun clubs where you'll actually make real relationships (i.e. you'll make far stronger relationships playing basketball with your classmates than doing mock interviews for finance internships). In short, enjoy the journey and process of those 2 years - because the real value isn't the "goal" of finding a job or a post-MBA career, the real value is those actual 2 years itself where you'll grow both professionally and personally in ways that you won't when you are working full-time - simply because you are meeting all kinds of people you'd normally won't meet, having the time and opportunity to do things you'd normally won't do (skydiving, traveling with fellow classmates, playing more sports, getting involved in theater, etc.) and simply having 2 years of life where you're not working. In other words, you're not buying a "career" with your MBA, but you're buying 2 years of life away from an employer who would otherwise own you for those two years if you weren't in b-school. It's 2 years that you're buying to focus on YOU, and nothing else. In fact, it's not even 2 years - it's really only 16 months of actual school (8 months of class, then 4 months internship, then 8 months of class) so time goes by very quickly.

There's nothing real specific to do, since everyone is different, but it's all about having a healthy attitude towards the experience. Spending those 2 years on your own terms the way you want it.

The other thing is to be aware of the herd mentality. It happens at every b-school, and has happened since the dawn of time. Don't let classmates influence your career choices, what electives you should take, where you live, etc. MBAs as a group are by nature a neurotically insecure bunch -- as a group, they will cluster around and lionize what is "hot" more than what is right for them as individuals. If you can spot the hype, that's half the battle. If something sounds too good to be true, it is -- MBAs are easily suckered into believing anything so long as the prospect of money and exclusivity is high (i.e. making lots of money in an area that would be the envy of other MBAs). B-school is kind of like an ant colony actually, except there is no queen ant so all the worker ants are left to following each other. Be your own man (or woman).

Other than that, don't eat yellow snow, drink lots of water before you go to bed if you're drunk, and always know the name of the person you wake up next to.


Alex Chu
www.mbaapply.com
alex@mbaapply.com
The MBA Field Guide (sample essays and more)

Friday 25 May 2007

Educate yourself from MIT, Princeton, Berkeley

I felt like posting few links out here.

Following are the sites where lot of archived video lectures can be found. The lectures are available on diverse areas and are immensely useful.

Princeton
http://www.princeton.edu/WebMedia/lectures/

MIT
http://mitworld.mit.edu/video_index.php

http://ocw.mit.edu/index.html (Open Courseware)

Berkeley

http://webcast.berkeley.edu/index.html

Royal Society - UK

http://www.royalsoc.ac.uk/page.asp?id=3093

Enjoy !!!

Thursday 24 May 2007

Application Resources -- What am I using ?

I have been doing a lot of research post GMAT on other areas such as various options post MBA,university selection, resources to use for applications.

First let me write more about the resources I will be using during the application process.

1) Business Week Forums and MBA Insider.
2) How to Get into top MBA program -- by Richard Montauk.
3) Your MBA Game plan -- by Omari Bouknight.
4) Vault's Career bible
5) Lot of other current year's bloggers the current students at university etc.

As of now, I dont plan to consult any of the admission consultants.
Admission Consultants charge exhorbitant fees, and they are not very helpful.
I will rather rely on free advice that these consultants (Alex, Sandy, Michael) provide on business week forums.

Any suggestions ?