The Life and Times of a Simon MBA Student

Monday, February 13, 2006

Just the same....

I have not blogged for a while so I figured lets make an entry. My nerves are at an end these days since I don’t have an offer and I am dying to get one. Every week something promising comes up and then just as fast as it comes it slides by into eternity. Classes are going well I am use to the regular rush of exams and the late night studying, although I am much better at time management now then I was in the first quarter. I also think people have stopped caring about grades so the curve has gone lower. We have our MBA PROM coming up … well the formal for the year which should be rather fun to attend. Nothing more hopefully next time I post I will be talking about THESE AMAZING OFFERS I have …

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Uhhh Ohhh

The internship started this week, it seems like its going well but I afraid that I might not be getting a full time offer. The group is very small, so I have decide to start networking again. This weekend will be strategizing weekend …..

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Outlier's effect on the average

Today we were asked to fill out an internal survey to see how our first year experience was. My first year experience has been nothing short of phenomenal; with a few exceptions. One of the exceptions was a new teacher the administration experimented with, this I believe this was not really the administrations fault, since it was a one time deal. ONE BIG PROBLEM I have faced is one other faculty member who I will write a detailed elaboration about after June 9th.

For today’s survey purpose I decided no to include both of the bad faculty members and write a note on the survey that the outliers were not included. I am puzzled if the average should go down because of the outliers. Should the professor for Finance 402’s performance be judged by the performance of one bad egg? If so how awful is the experience and how does that tie in with the whole experience? I am a very puzzled student today!!!

Monday, May 09, 2005

How Business Schools Lost Their Way

I just read the article in May's Harvard Business Review "How Business Schools Lost Their Way" . If you have the time the article is well worth the 20 minutes reading time. I agree with most of the article, I am a big supporter of the small private universities that spend their budgets on student education rather than trying to get into the next Journal of Finance. If the most important task at hand was the development of students then we wouldn’t have teachers that can’t communicate their brilliant ideas with the students. That said I have not run into any bad teachers at Simon. There were only two teachers that I would rate below perfect. One was new and wasn’t able to connect with the students; and the other one … lets just say it seems as if he’s on Viagra all the time.

I question some of the theories derived in the article. James O’Toole Says in the article “When applied to business—where judgments are made with messy, incomplete data—statistical and methodological wizardry can blind rather than illuminate.” I am not sure about other schools but it is a well known fact that most of the renowned faculty members make most of their paychecks through consulting. Some have even discussed their lucrative careers in consulting in class.

“Today it is possible to find tenured professors of management who have never set foot inside a real business, except as customers.” Again I question where these teachers teach; When reading about professors like Aswat Damodaran or Frank Fabozzi, one surely can tell that not only have they done extraordinarily in the world of research but also have set their flags in the real world too.

In conclusion although I am not a big fan of judging faculty based on research it is not true that all faculty members in B-schools do is research; they are also profit maximizing individuals who consult or are partners in firms.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Operational Excellence?

Simon is a great school very well recognized faculty; one thing not that well recognized about Simon is its own operations. How can a business school that teaches about how great Wal-Mart is, through numerous HBS case studies, have such bad logistics? Some issues I have encountered and do not know how to rectify are:

  • The parking lot for MBA students is about ¾ of a mile away from the school. This has resulted in me getting more than 200$ worth of parking tickets. You say well there is not much Simon can do about that, well hold on; there is a parking lot right behind the school which is usually half full, but is only for administration of University of Rochester. When I was working the parking lot was about 5 minutes from the main entrance of the building; and maybe its just me, but making 28 years who have an average of 5 years of work experience, park in the “KIDDY” parking lot is a bit obscure!
  • The main reason for this entry is what happened today. I went to the Management Library looking for a book by Fabozzi. The management library is located in the main library of the University of Rochester, and funded by Simon. The book that I wanted was on a 2 hour reserve, and I was not allowed to take the book out. This was totally understandable, then I asked if it would be possible for the book to be ordered to the Simon School Career Center Library? I got a long winded speech about how many books there are and they couldn’t make exceptions. As I looked around the Management Library I did not see one MBA student, there were a lot of students there, but all from the undergraduate, now I ask if the books are there for me and 149 of my colleagues why can I not read the book on my own time?

My conclusion of this problem is that there was probably a big grant given to the school by a notable alumnus for the library and everyone forgot what the real purpose of the library was. This has also made me think about giving to the school and how one should allocate the money it gives to non profit organizations. I would surely be proud of myself if I was ever in the position to sponsor a library for a gifted set of Business students, but if the students were not able to use the resources, wouldn’t it be better to sponsor dying children in South Africa?

Friday, May 06, 2005

Who Moved My Cheese?

Yesterday instead of reading Lou Gerstner’s book “Who Said Elephants can’t dance”, I read who moved my cheese and then thought of who I was in the book. I relate most to the speedy mouse, which is not a good thing. I am always ready to get up and go, up for anything and change doesn’t scare me. Does that mean I am risk neutral, and if so how is this going to play a role in the career of a portfolio manager? Well I am not a PM yet, but it is on the List of things to do! I am attending a lecture buy an alumni of Rochester University Edmund A. Hajim (UR ’58) Chairman & Chief Executive Officer a privately held firm, where the topic of discussion will be who moved my cheese. I am really curious how this is going to play out. I was probably not able to read enough between the lines, but I really want to know how this book can be so helpful to so many people.
One thing I found similar to Haw in the book is that I can laugh at myself, but I am 10000% more competitive then him. On a closing note there was a session on lean Six Sigma today about how it works and what it really is. The presenter in the lecture made a reference to the book by saying either you make things right where you are or you go somewhere else and read “Who moved my Cheese” to cheer yourself up!!!

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Fixed Income

Before coming to school I had very little idea about fixed income products. They seemed like a mystery to me, since I will be dealing with them over the summer I have started learning more and more about them. I can not believe how smart you have to be, to be a real player on WALL STREET. I am starting to wonder if I will be able to survive in this doggy dog world.
From the beginning of the year my main focus was getting an internship in Buy-side Equity research. No I did not think that the job was “sexy”, but rather the competitive environment and risk / reward of such a job clicked with my ambitions. I have landed an IM / Fixed Income internship, and reflecting back I am happy I am doing this, but I wonder if this is really for me? I love the people that will be in my group, but learning about some of the products gives me headaches. Well hopefully everything will turn out for the best …