Bhrugi's UMD Smith MBA Experience


College Park skies

Sipping my herbal tea by the porch under my building at 6:45am, feeling melancholic and nervous for the new journey I was going to embark on was how I spent my very first morning at College Park. As I saw the sun rise, so did my hopes for the bright future (very truly so) at Smith.  I have been a sky buff since a while but the skies in College Park just seem more expansive, bright and descriptive. Every sunrise or sunset I saw after the first day communicated a new story to me. The sky exulted and mourned. Every time I looked at the sky, I could be sure to experience a different mood. This was very important as it gave me moments of tranquility before I start my day or after my long day at school.  I am sharing a few of my favorite photos of the sunrises and sunsets in the hope that it will help you get equanimity when you feel blue or stressed.    


CEO at Smith!

      The start of the second year at school brings along new first years around the caserooms, new courses, new experiences and opportunities to explore and also new CEOs at Smith. CEO at Smith is a very unique event hosted by the Dean’s Office at Smith where legendary leaders speak about their stories and experiences. Mr. Kees Kruythff, President of Unilever North America was the first leader this year to address Smith Terps. Unilever has been the most aspirational company for me since I started my marketing career. It is not the products and ads that astute inspire me but the fact that this company impact making lives of billions of customers across the world better every day. Mr. Kees started the conversation by introducing his 5 global daughters and the notion of work life balance. He said, “people with purpose thrive longer and so it is very important to bring your FULL self to work” and when the place you are working at gives you this platform, you naturally become more efficient and are able to achieve great feats at work. Mr. Kees also mentioned that the only thing that is constant in the business world is...


Journey through the global food lanes

  As someone who aspires to travel the world to just to taste different cuisines, the International Night at Smith gave me the opportunity to do that under just one roof. The Asian MBA Association organizes the International Night during the Chinese New Year Week, also called the International Week. The goal of the night is to educate the students from the different parts of the world about Chinese culture and also help them experience the true essence of global culture. The week starts with an authentic Chinese Dinner on the New Year Day. The dinner includes Chinese delicacies, a dumpling making competition, fortune cookies, some Chinese icebreakers and a raffle. Gorging of food is followed by a Lion Dance, a traditional Chinese dance where students got a chance to feed lettuce to the Lion. This is done to pray for happiness, luck and great fortune in the new year because the Chinese word for lettuce has the same pronunciation as “make a great fortune”. Next comes the International Night, where Smith students from across the globe put up a food table. Some of the countries represented were Guam, Barbados, Israel, Japan, India, China, America (surprise surprise :P), Pakistan, South...


College at College Park!

My journey with the University of Maryland started four years ago when I came to meet my cousin. I knew right away that this is the place where I am going to go to school. It was not just the beautiful, green campus or the expansiveness of the campus but the fact that there are over 60,000 students going to school here. The community feel of the college became evident very soon. Driving around the campus, I realized why the area is called College Park. It is the modest things like the rock climbing wall, golf course, bubble tea cafes, squirrels munching on pine cones and acorns in the amphitheaters, suited bike riders and the larger than life football grounds that made me fall in love with College Park.   My tryst with all the other interesting and fascinating things started last fall when I finally came to start school in the MBA program at the Robert H. Smith School of Business. On my arrival, I was inundated with so much information on the things I need to experience to make the best of my two years. Yes, Washington, D.C., is close by but will I ever have to go...


Diwali Night

Diversity is one of the things that the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business is known for. Associations like International MBA, Asian MBA, Latin MBA, Black MBA and Jewish MBA are proof of this diversity. Dancing on Latin tunes, introducing international students to challah at Shabbat Shindig and celebrating the festival of lights-Diwali are few of the many ways Smith Students celebrate diversity. The International MBA Association organizes one of the most celebrated nights at Smith. It is a night of lights, laughter and luscious food. The Diwali Night, celebrated on 10th November this year. Diwali signifies the victory of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance, good over evil and hope over despair. Talking of victory of light over darkness, DMD second midterm was on the same day. #JustSaying The lineup for the events this year was an introductory video followed by singing and dance performances and a fashion show. Smith discovered four singing stars this year. The first singing performance was an indie rock song by Sandeep Iyer. Following the applause was Rahul Rathore who sang a medley of soft rock songs. The most surprising performance was a duet with Manu and Prachi. Surprising because our...


Dinner with Dean

Dinner with Dean   Growing up I always wished I was given an opportunity to talk to the Dean at my school. I believed my conversation with the Dean would bring about some major reforms such as longer lunch time and no homework policy to the school. These wishes unfortunately never came true growing up, but little did I know they would be fulfilled in business school. One of the signature events at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business is the Dinner with Dean series. Yes, it is exactly what it means. It is Smith’s way of encouraging dialogue with MBA students in a comfortable setting. The venue this time was The Common at the Marriott.  Dean Alex Triantis is usually accompanied with one Professor, this time it was Professor David Godes. Professor Godes is the Chair of the Marketing Department and first-year MBAs core marketing professor. Going into the dinner, my classmates and I were not sure what breath of topics we would talk about but Dean Triantis quickly addressed the elephant in the room and by asking about our background. This made us feel very valued as he took immense interest in learning about...


Hello New Orleans!

Hello New Orleans!!! I thought the first time I’d say this would be when I’d go for Mardi Gras but (un)fortunately I said this when I attended the National Black MBA Conference. Everything leading up to the conference was so intimidating. Dressing up sharp wasn’t an issue but knowing if I was well prepared was surely one. Basically, I was uncertain if I was ready to meet my potential employer and talk comfortably about myself. Knowing myself, it was all the more difficult as I don’t enjoy talking (especially about myself) to strangers. But however, I made it through those two days without any panic attacks and I realized that these esteemed employers are also human and are not there to eat you up. If anything, they help put things in perspective and help  gauge more about the industry, company and role. My takeaways from the conference were: Keep your calm as much as you can, do your best to prepare and don’t stress on the night leading up to the conference, have a good night’s sleep, eat a heavy breakfast (you don’t want your stomach growling when you are talking to employers) and don’t get intimidated by the scale...


The Home Stretch

      Can you imagine it is been only a few weeks since we started school and we are already in the home stretch phase for Term A? Job applications, elevator pitches and interview preparations for National Black are already so intimidating and when coupled with finals week just gets worse. How do we find a balance between the academics and career? Is it even possible to reach some sort of an equilibrium before all the craziness comes to an end? Well, maybe. I think I have kinda found a strategy that works for me and so I am going to share it with everyone to do my bit for the Terp community.   I have decided to not worry about the finals till after I am done with the conference. I want to give the conference my 100% so I don’t regret not having the learning curve I deserve from the conference. Having said that I am not going to stress and overburden myself with the conference either. I think it is about time we stop (I have) applying for jobs on the National Black website and just concentrate on our SAR stories and elevator pitches. Also, don’t...


MBA Consulting Forum

  The MBA Consulting Club at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business organized its annual signature event, the Consulting Forum, on September 23, 2016. The forum featured representatives from top consulting firms and aimed at facilitating an open dialogue between students and alumni in the industry. This year’s forum was the 18th in the series, and had representatives from around 11 firms such as PWC,  Cognizant, Deloitte, Boston Consulting Group, Gallup, FMP Consulting, MITRE, Hewlett Packard, First Annapolis Consulting and Privatin among others. The forum catered to participants from across the different wings of Smith- Full Time, Part Time, Executive MBA, MPP and the participation surpassed the attendance from all the previous years. Like any other event of this scale, the forum kicked off by Smith School’s Office of Career Services MD, Dr. K’s warm and inspiring words and the importance a consulting role holds in this day and age. Dr. K summed this up by helping us with the 5 key Q’s (IQ, EQ, PQ, CRQ, ImprovQ) required for consulting. This was immediately followed up with a session on Consulting 101 whose panel consisted of Shantanu Chandra- Advisory Manager in Financial Services Cybersecurity and Privacy...


10 Tips To Get Through Your First Semester at Smith

  While we absolutely love the newest phase of our lives, there are times we feel we could just take a step back and make sense of the world around us. We started the MBA program at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business with a month-long orientation, which helped us get accustomed to coming back to school, but we were unaware of how overwhelming it was going to get. I realized that b-school is an adventure, and by adventure I mean nightmare! Well, at least the first semester. So, how do we get through it? How do we find the right balance between academics and career? How do we learn the art of time management? Let me try to answer these questions for you in the best possible manner. So I (with the help of our second-year MBA students) am going to take you through how we can get through each of our classes and what is the key to our career and academic success at Smith. DMD Yes, we are struggling with getting a grip (read staying awake) on this course and in the class. But as future leaders we need to know how mathematical...