We’re halfway through Week 3 and I’ve found all warning I received about the intensity of the program before coming here grossly understated. Every minute of the day is literally accounted for! I guess this depends on your level of activity outside of traditional classes. I try to be active in a lot of things, hence the pressure.
Anyway, talking about classes, we have six core courses this term…Strategy, Decision Science (sort of like statistics but decision science sounds more intellectual), Marketing, Financial Reporting, Finance and Managerial Economics. I must say i’ve enjoyed all of them so far (mostly due to the lecturers). Tomo Suzuki (Financial Reporting) is definately my favourite! In Tomo’s world, everything can be reduced to ‘DOUBLE ENTRY!’ I suspect the class has internalised this view point as a classmate came up with the double entry for buying a beer (Cash on the Right (Reducing Asset), Beer(Increasing Asset) on the Left….genius! An honourable mention goes to my Decision Science lecturer who’s made the course bearable (almost) with his eccentric and highly dramatic performances!
I’ve however had to learn to adjust to the way classes are structured here. The lectures are based primarily on case studies which are made available in advance. Students are then expected to read (actively read) these case studies (typically ranging from 5-20 pages long) prior to classes and form a well considered opinion. Then a good chunk of the class is spent talking about the case and listening to other opinions….the lecturer hardly ever puts forth his/her opinion. Their job is to sort of guide and facilitate the discussion. We’re also expected to question the lecturer’s viewpoints (I almost had a seizure when a classmate got into an argument about a concept and the lecturer seemed to welcome the argument)!
Coming from a background where the lecturer strides majestically into class, being the all knowing wise one, and reels out pearls of wisdom to his fortunate students, who accept his view point without question, this represents a significant shift. It can also be a challenge for those who don’t have a lot of experience analyzing case studies as you’re expected to hit the ground running. I’ll recommend this book (Ellet, William. : The case study handbook :how to read, discuss, and write persuasively about cases) to anyone coming for an MBA….I wish someone recommended it to me before I came here!
What else have I been up to?
A-Z Bop at GTC….yes that’s a real person (well done Daniel!)
Sexy Sub Fusc….a Bop right after Matriculation where students have to wear something from their Sub Fusc (official matriculation outfit) and try to look sexy….(Matan, Elias and I all trying and failing miserably) I have ‘sexier’ pictures of people who totally pulled sexy off….but I shall spare their future political careers.
With Ananth and Haben at the Emirates living it up!