Imaginary Engineer - Yale SOM '08

Industrial Engineer dreaming of an MBA

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Long Time No Blog

Just when you think first semester is busy, second semester is even busier! There was little time to transition from the international experience to new classes, and recruiting for a summer internship was a long emotional process similar to that of applying to business school. A quick recap of what has been going on since the new year:

New Curriculum:
Classes were more interesting this semester compared to those in the first two quarters. I took Employee (HR perspective taught by the Dean), Innovator (fun class to practice thinking in creative ways), Operations Engine (my favorite prof), Managing Sourcing Funds (CFO perspective, with half of the class taught by Fabozzi, who is famous on Wall St among Fixed Income folks) and Negotiations (a fun interactive class with grad students from nearly every professional school). I feel I have developed a more balanced view of solving business problems by learning about issues from different perspectives. The professors and Dean were amazing and I especially liked the guest speakers in Operations. What typically may be a boring subject in most schools was really fun because the professor and guest speakers gave a realistic view of operational challeneges at different companies. They gave memorable stories and the Littlefield competition was so exciting that I'll be competing with a team in the MIT Littlefield competition in April. Next quarter, I'll be taking electives and the last core class, Integrated Leadership Perspective. This class is the culmination of the new curriculum and nearly all the material is brand new. There will be many professors teaching the class and I'm interested in learning about how everything ties together.

Recruiting was a long process. Coming to Yale SOM, my expectation for a good business school is to open doors and land interview spots. For me, I believe the school should do its best to set students up with 1st round interviews, and after that, it is up to the student to sink or swim on his/her merits. A lot of firms make their decisions based on the quality of the student and his/her background before coming to school. Regardless if I went to Wharton or MIT Sloan, I would be asked the same cases and questions during the interview process because you are competing against all business school students. Hence, I was definitely pleased by the CDO's (career development office) efforts to land me interviews. Some firms had more formalized processes than others, but after several months of mostly phone interviews (I targetted west coast firms), I landed one of my top choices for a summer internship. I will be returning to beautiful San Francisco to work in Operations for a large retailer (think of a large SF-based retailer who has cool khakis).

Last year, I remember meeting someone at the San Francisco Yale admitted students reception who ended up choosing Tuck over SOM because she felt that Tuck would prepare her better for a job in management consulting. Specifically, she felt she would have better chances at getting into Mckinsey by attending Tuck. I don't know all of the statistics, but I feel that if you're a smart candidate, Mckinsey will find you either way. The candidate who is likely to study harder for the cases and has a spotless resume will get hired over the less qualified candidate. Both schools can set you up for an interview, but I'm not sure how one school can prepare a candidate better than another school. Going off published statistics can also be misleading because schools do not publish how many offers were made and how many people initially applied. For example, I think Yale SOM had competitive percentages of offers over applied, but two students both chose to turn down Mck offers for personal reasons.

There were a couple school wide fundraising events that were fun and successful. The Global Social Enterprise group had a Date Auction at playwright that was very entertaining. Eligible single students were auctioned off like cattle to raise money for the Brazil trip. Some surprising bids were made and I never would've guessed how much money people are willing to spend to just go on a date. The internship fund also had a competition to raise money for students going into non-profits this summer. The folks running the internship fund will also be hosting a talent show when we get back from spring break and I imagine there will be some memorable acts. It might be the same weekend as Admit Weekend in April and I encourage prospectives to stop by to get a taste of some of the personalities at SOM.