To put it simply, this weekend was great.
On Friday morning, I had my interview for the Fisher College of Business. I had a great flowing conversation with an adcom, lasting about 45 minutes. The interview was mostly behavioral-focused, as one might expect from a school that values intimacy and collaboration. I only got one unexpected question: describe a current newsworthy topic in the business world that you are following. In hindsight, I think that the adcom was trying to ascertain how “plugged in” I am to the business world. Fair question; it makes sense to wonder whether an engineer is truly engaged in this new world I’m trying to join. Thankfully I stay up on the Financial Times and numerous podcasts so I was able to pick an interesting story that directly related to my long term career goal – stating that it would be something I’d have to watch in terms of career prospects. I think she was impressed.
You may also remember that Friday was the day for London Business School to send out their interview invites (or the dreaded ding). Thankfully my mind wasn’t tormented by constant email checking: I was too busy and engaged with the Fisher interview to be on my phone. When the day’s events were done, I swiped down to read my missed notifications. Some work email, a few text messages… and there I saw it. Subject: “London Business School Stage 1 Decision”.
I must admit, when I saw the words “delighted to inform you”, I raised my hands to the heavens and let out a primordial yell. And then maybe another. This was sweet, sweet validation that A: I wasn’t setting my sights too high, B: I wrote a strong application, and that C: This could actually happen. What wonderful icing on a wonderful day. I had to refocus myself in short order, however, since day two at Fisher was yet to come.
The Fisher Season Premiere
59 fellow prospects joined me on campus for two days of events which included mock case discussions, lunch with faculty (who came in on a Saturday to talk to us – nice touch), career management talks, and socials/dinners with currents and alums. It also happened to be Halloween weekend, leading to some current students invited us to their Halloween party. Fisher students know what they are doing (read: it was a blast). I was very impressed with the students, both prospective and current. These people were incredibly sharp. During Professor Anand’s Global Strategy mock case discussion, great ideas were flying in left and right. By the end I realized I picked up just as much insight from my fellow prospects as I did from listening to the professor. The currents and alums that I met just about all were interning/working for a Fortune 500 (Columbus is HQ for 17 Fortune 500s). There was definitely a Midwestern sense about the program, and the career management people talked about how they wanted to establish themselves as elite in their backyard and grow from there. All in all the weekend solidified some of what I already knew about Fisher (elite facilities and career management, in a vibrant city) but I also picked up some new information. Fisher is a really cohesive and engaging place; the staff and the faculty really love what they do and you can feel that energy coursing through the halls. Fisher definitely took a leap forward in my eyes.
Onward and Forward
The admissions train does not stop. Fresh from everything this past weekend, I’m preparing for my trek to Evanston for my Kellogg interview and for the Diversity Preview Weekend as a whole. The interview will be a blind one (interviewer won’t have read my application materials in advance), which changes the dynamic a bit. There’s also a ton of activities planned for the weekend, which I’m really excited about.
I’m also constantly scanning my email for my LBS interview details. I will probably be interviewing with an alumnus in DC/NYC/CHI, but having a date and location confirmed would be nice to have. London’s interview process is wildly different from most schools… but more on that later. I don’t want to get ahead of myself.
I still have some business to attend to this weekend first and foremost.