Having half semester classes means the period around mid-semester doesn’t just mean mid-term projects and exams, it also means finals. It was definitely odd to be preparing for finals during the middle of October while the weather was still nice out. Normally you can avoid the “bunker mentality” until December, when there isn’t that much else you want to do. But there is one advantage, you get something accomplished a lot earlier on in the MBA program, and you get to start some new classes so you feel like you are progressing. As a student, I like to feel like I’m continuously moving forward, this type of class schedule definitely helps with that.
Archive for October, 2007
Here at Smith, group work is an important part of our classwork. In every class we take, we are either assigned or able to choose groups. Most groups are about 5 people in size and the assignments we have to complete can be very challenging. Group work has one big challenge though and its totally unrelated to the assignment, coordination. Trying to get 5 people together amist the busy school schedules and personal things is a challenge. Meeting time becomes a premium, because you aren’t sure if you are going to be able to meet again. Many students live in different areas, so travel time and meeting locations can be issues. Now, in every group I’ve participated in, everyone has been very good at working through all this, but its just interesting to see the dynamic of how a group chooses to communicate. The Smith school provides us with many technology options, whether through net meetings or just email chatter over our blackberries. The technology helps to make the process more efficient, but it can also lead to some interesting multi-tasking. For instance I read one of my classmates revisions on my blackberry, while checking out at the grocery store. Then again, I guess this is probably good training for the corporate world, after all, in my last job I used to read research on my company blackberry while on the train during my commute. Working with other people is a big part of the corporate environment these days, how we communicate with our colleagues is a big part of how successful we’ll be. Our group work here at Smith acts as an excellent proxy, and some of the resources they provide allow us to try out communicating in different ways.