Ah, it feels good to be back among the living, if only for a bit. I’ve been going at the GMAT study pretty hard, but today I’ll pick my head up above water for a to pass on some news: I’ve registered for summer courses.
I’ve alluded before to the fact that I wasn’t the most prodigious student in undergrad, for many different reasons. While I’ll be sure to mention the relevant reasons in that infamous “optional” (ie. you better write it if you want the option of attending business school) essay in each of my applications, none of these reasons are big enough to explain away why I’m on the lower end of the GPA scale for some of my target schools.
So rather than try to explain them away, I’ve decided to go out and show what I’m really capable of. I’ve enrolled in a Corporate Finance course as well as a Business Statistics course at my local university for the Summer Term. This is going to serve a two-fold purpose for me. One, I’ll be bringing home 2 A’s in some pretty quant heavy courses that together with a strong GMAT score, a civil engineering degree, and 4 years work experience in a quantitative environment, will hopefully remove any lingering shadows of doubt that an adcom may have on my intellectual chops.
The second thing that taking these courses does for me is adding some structured learning to a field that (to this point) I’ve been hungrily learning about through reading the Financial Times, WSJ, multiple books, and plenty of papers and blogs. Sometimes I find myself unfamiliar with a financial term that a writer uses, or struggling to wrap my brain around a trade concept. Adding some structured learning opportunities will only enhance my understanding of these topics, which in turn helps me refine what I’m truly interested in.
Courses start in two weeks. Only thing I’m anxious about is that there is going to be an overlap between GMAT study, examinations, restudy (maybe), and coursework, all the while continuing my growing duties at work. I look forward to the challenge and the progress there is to make.
The other day I found myself doing some further research on my target schools by catching up on their respective YouTube activity. That’s when I came across this video from the Kellogg School of Business from their recent “Kellog-Aspen Conference on Rethinking ‘Shareholder Value’ and the Purpose of the Corporation.” The video was taken during a session called “Corporate Speech: The Role of Corporations in Influencing Policy.” Here’s the video. Fair warning it’s about 1.5 hours long.
Breif synopsis: A panel of insanely qualified individuals discuss the justification (or lack there of) behind and the ramifications of Citizens United. If you don’t know, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission was a constitutional law case in which the Supreme Court upheld the 1st Amendment rights of corporations, associations, and labor unions. This meant that these entities are allowed to have independent political expenditures. If it’s still not ringing a bell, you’ll probably remember the infamous question that was being posed a while back: “Are Corporations People?”
I found this video endlessly interesting, as with most constitutional law interpretations. It has it all; founding father’s intent, debate on whether corporations are private entities or government sanctioned organizations, and juicy allegories. The general consensus, which I happen to agree with, was that at minimum politicians should be more transparent on where their campaign funding comes from, and corporations need to be more transparent on how much capital goes towards political contributions. With that information in hand, let the voting public and the shareholders decide the future of political contributions. A floundering company’s shareholders will be unhappy if millions are going to the campaigns of politicians, and the voting public will be unhappy if (SHOCK) their elected officials do more for their campaign contributors than they do for the people they represent.
So if you find yourself with an hour and a half to blow, and want to stimulate your mind give that video a watch and thank me later.