Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Day 1: Action Unlimited

It is around 12 am now.I am feeling sleepy. But then, I had such an eventful and exciting day today that I have to speak my heart out and blog about my first day of the MBA program.How do I feel? If I had to describe it in one word - Amazing!

As we walked back to our graduate residence,I asked Ashok,a classmate of mine how he felt about the day.This is what he had to say “The day started with a bang and ended with a boom!!

That very much sums up the day! So, how was the first day of my MBA for Science and Technology program?

At around 9 am, I walked into the atrium to be greeted by the Queen's Business school staff. We were given our name tags and asked to join the continental breakfast hosted for the MBAst students. Out there, I met about 56 students from 15 different countries who would be my classmates for a year! Wow !What diversity in the class. There are students from Canada, China, France, India,Pakistan,Lebanon, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Trinidad and Tobago, United Kingdom, USA, New Zealand etc !

For the past few weeks, we all had been watching and reading the profiles of the students on the MBAst portal.There used to be some interaction and discussions too. But now it was time for us to put faces to those names. And boy, we, for sure did have some fun getting the names right!.

Here is something that I got to tell you all! As we walked into the classroom, we saw that there were name tags placed in front of our seats. In front of our respective seats was a greeting card that wished us good luck for the year ahead.What caught my attention was that this was signed personally by the Queen's Business school staff!I think this was something really special.There are about 56 students and the staff signed on these cards for every student. Now, this is what you would call personalized care and attention!

The program manager Stacy Kelly talked about what we could do beyond academics. It appears that there is a lot for us to learn and explore beyond classrooms for us.We have the MBAst Clubs, the case competitions, the student executives, the MBA Games, the Queen's University Entrepreneurial Summit ( QUEST), the Athletics in the 'Fit to lead' program, the conferences, the Queen's club etc.With so much stuff being offered, I guess, I will have to sit and think about which one to join. My goal is stay active and make the best use of the clubs that I join.

Another interesting thing worth mentioning is the “Book Smart/Life Smart” classes. Shannon Goodspeed, the Director, would occasionally take some short sessions for us where she will give us tips that we don’t get to learn in books.This tips are what she has gathere over the years working for numerous organizations.BTW,she puzzled all of us today by asking a simple question - Do you know which side is usally the name plate tagged?The left hand side or the right hand side.? :)
Itz the right side !:)

The afternoon was spent setting up our laptops. Towards the evening, we were introduced to the 'Fit to Lead program’. An excellent concept, 'Fit to Lead' is about finding balance in our busy lifestyle. It is for us to make a 'choice', 'challenge' ourselves and bring in the desired 'change'. A personalized schedule will be provided to us by the trainer.We have free access to some of the best sports facilities in the town here (not just the university!!). The objective of this program, I believe, is to develop a life style during the duration for the course that will help us achieve a balance (Mental, Physical, Emotional, and Spiritual) for the rest of our life. The coordinator Ryan Stores talked about his theory -"Life is a Gift, open it each day" and surprised all of us by providing us with gifts - Queen's Tees, shorts, tracks, pull over !! Isn't that cool?

In the evening, the students, spouses, partners and kids headed for a Barbecue. There was some fine liquor and wine provided. The veggies were not disappointed too as there was some good stuff for them also.

We were a set of 56 people in the morning who hardly knew each other. Towards the evening, the class was mingling as if they knew each other quite well. There was laughter, noise, chats all around. Some of the students after that went for another round of drinks session at the nearby club. The Indians and the Chinese students got together for a "chai"(tea) session where they had a good discussion session on a variety of subjects.

I am tired now! I guess I have blogged enough and should go to bed. There is a tough day planned ahead for us tommorow.! The day for me was an amazing experience. I realized that there are some challenges for me ahead. There is also a lot to learn and there will be many opportunities coming my way. I just hope that in the year ahead, I make the best use of it.

As I sign off and hit my bed, here are a few words of wisdom that Shannon Goodspeed gave the MBAst students:
- Employ Leadership from within.
- Workload is challenging yet rewarding.
- Become adept at Time Management.
- Competetion is good but co-operation is better!.
- Participate in extra curricular activities.
- Stay positive and maintain your sense of humor.
- Embrace multi culturalism and all that it has to offer.

Good Night !!

Indian Blogger
Class of 2007

MBAst Class of 2007 statistics
Class Size: 56
Average GMAT: 660
Average Work Ex: 6 Yrs
Advanced Degrees (Phd,etc): 16% of class
Nationalities represented: 15 ( Includes Canada,China,France,India,Pakistan,Lebanon,Sierra Leone,Singapore,Trinidad and Tobago,USA,New Zealand etc)
50% of the class consists of International students
Age range varies from 23 yrs to 46 years

A random profile of the MBA students
-Served on Board of Directors of Orchestra Toronto
-Won Gold Medal at intracollege shot put competition
-Holds a Phd in Anatomy and cell biology
-Is a certified Management Accountant(CMA)
-Was a radio jockey for All India Radio
-Won 2nd place at American Helicopter Society Design Competition
-Was accreditation coordinator at 2003 world weightlifting championship
-Published a case study on “Fulcrum connection Business "
-Graduated #2 out of 577 Engineering grads at University
-Certified ski and snowboard instructor
-Reached Grade 10 ( Piano) of the royal conservatory of music (Canada)
-Won instruments systems and automation society (ISA) student award
-Co-wrote, codirected,and acted in amateur film called "A King's ransom"
-Is a lieutenant in the US Navy
-Climbed Toronto's CN Tower for charity
-Member of the Golden Key International society
-Holds a Phd in Neuroscience
-Speaks English, mandarin and Japanese fluently.
-A javelin throw champion at university
-Devised, introduced, and played Math games with elementary students
-1999 Pyrenees pelota championship


At 9:57 AM, Anonymous Kam said...

Some real cool profiles in the class. And a great start for the program. Bon Voyage! -to you, to other Indian friends and to the whole class.
BTW, now it's time for you to change "My next destination" to something like "My new home" :-). You've been waiting for this for a loooooong time.


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