Imaginary Engineer - Yale SOM '08

Industrial Engineer dreaming of an MBA

Sunday, September 24, 2006


Just when I thought I couldn't get any busier, my outlook calendar this past week was crammed with club activities. In the span of one week:

Crew - learned that it's much harder than it looks
Consulting - I really need to start practicing for case interviews asap
Operations - we've already formed a team for the Lufthansa case competition
Korean - huge turn out for the delicious bar-b-q on Saturday
Sports - need to find a glove for IM softball

Fortunately the color coding in my outlook keeps me organized and helps manage my time so I can keep up with classes, but it'll be interesting to see how I manage to keep up with the pace of business school life now that company presentations begin this week (my resume needs a big makeover soon).

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Proficient is sufficient?

I'm not sure if it's a first year thing, or the new curriculum, but the pace of classes accelerated to ludicrous speed in just one week. Even though there aren't any grades, I find myself working harder than I did in undergrad just to keep up with the homeworks/assignments/readings. The good thing about this pace is that I've learned to manage my time significantly better. While I can't party every night now, proper time management will allow me to continue watching my favorite sports (go bears!).

On Friday, the CDO (Career Development Office) sponsored a "Meet the Firms" event where a bunch of companies came by SOM to talk about opportunities for MBA's (internships and full time positions). While I didn't learn anything new at the Consulting booths, I found myself speaking to representatives from the Consumer Packaged Goods and Manufacturing industries and learning more about opportunities available. Some of these companies are bigger than you expect, and it may be easier to find an amazing job in California through these big companies, versus going the consulting career path. Fortunately, I still have time to decide what I want to do, but I probably should make up my mind soon.

BTW, for the international experience, I got my first pick! I will be heading over to China on Jan 3-14. I'm contemplating flying out earlier to possibly spend New Years in China or Hong Kong.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Honeymoon Period Over

After a fun week of orientation and another week of team building, school has officially started. My classes (Econ, Data & Decision Analysis, Accounting, Problem Framing, Interpersonal Dynamics) aren't too difficult yet, but it has been a challenge to manage my schedule of things to do. Fortunately, Microsoft Outlook has many fancy features to color code my calendar and tasks so I can keep track of which homeworks/recruiting events/readings are due the next day.

Outside of class, we had the SOM Student Club fair and I probably overextended myself by signing up for too many clubs. The clubs that I'm interested in are:

-Sports (I love IM)
-Media & Entertainment (Can we visit ESPN today??)
-Consulting (I definitely need practice in the case study)
-Ski & Snowboard (Vermont, here I come)
-Korean (mmmmm kimchee and bulgogi)
-Operations (possible operations field trip: Casino Ops)
-West Coast (I'm a spoiled California kid at heart)
-Crew (Outside my comfort zone, trying something new)

On Friday, the CDO (Career Development Office) sponsored a career immersion event to give everyone a taste of different industries by having panelists talk about their jobs. The sessions I attended were:

-Session 1: Investment Banking (After learning more about the IB industry, I know I don't want to be an IBanker)
-Session 2: Manufacturing (The only industry of the day that actually talked about work/life balance in a positive way)
-Session 3: Media & Entertainment (I want to be VP of the NBA, such an awesome job!)
-Session 4: Consulting (panelists from all the big firms gave honest feedback in describing life as a consultant)

The Career Immersion day was surprisingly really helpful in learning about industries I'm not familiar with. I never considered a career in Media & Entertainment, but now I may consider applying for internships in that industry.

On Friday night, we learned more about the International Experience coming up in January. We learned about the 8 countries (China, Singapore, Japan, South Africa, England, Costa Rica, Argentina, India) and which focus/perspective (State/Society/Investor..) they would be tied to regarding the new curriculum. China is still my top choice, but the Toyota Plant tour in Japan has me seriously considering Japan as my 2nd choice. The Argentina presentation was engaging and energetic, and I may choose Argentina as my 3rd choice solely based on the professor's enthusiasm for the country. We'll see what happens, but I look forward to visiting any of the 8 countries.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Managing Teams

Just finished my first week of school and I surprisingly learned a lot about myself and working in teams. The first course "Managing Groups & Teams" in the "Orientation to Management" section of the new curriculum was very interesting as we:

-solved a murder mystery
-survived a hurricane
-participated in a biased market trading poker chips (go red squares!!)
-built a lego man in 2 minutes
-commanded a battle tank
-learned a lot about our mentorship team members

I learned the consequences of "group think" and how important structure and processes are to creating an effective team. My mentorship team is awesome and I look forward to working with them throughout the first year. The diversity of my team is just a representative cross section of the diversity in the class of '08. There's an investment banker, operations/engineering guy (me), education background, investigative journalist, military guy, consumer goods guy, and joint forestry/mba student. We worked effectively and acknowledge we still have areas to improve upon.

The social aspect of last week was pretty intense as we ended up drinking nearly every night. Yale SOM rented out a bowling alley one night and everyone showed up. The party at Playwright was fun because drinks were free!! I sense things will slow down next week as classes start getting harder.