Saturday, April 09, 2011

Second Year, Q4

The end is near.

It's a dramatic way to say it, but graduation is a mere six weeks from tomorrow.

There's been a fundamental shift from the beginning of first year to this fourth quarter we've found ourselves in. Everyone has shifted from being hopeful, eager, stressed-out students and job hunters to calm, relaxed golfers, hikers, fitness freaks, you name it. While I don't mean to diminish the plight of my classmates who are still on the hunt for full-time positions, the collective tension in the air has relaxed.

We now participate in class because we genuinely feel we have something to contribute, not because we feel the desperate need to get a participation "point" for the day. Our relationship with professors has become much more like friendship than like the typical teacher-student relationship. It doesn't hurt that two of my classes are taught my guest lecturers and not by the professors, and that we join the professors for lunch after class. On Monday night, my literature class group (yes! literature class - I just finished reading The White Tiger) will be joining our professor and his family for dinner.

This last quarter is a lot about tying up loose ends. While my reading classes offer the opportunity to think philosophically on success and great leadership, the speaker classes I am taking tie together everything we've learned in a tactical manner. Rather than discussing in broad generalizations what it's like to deal with a union, speakers will say "okay, let's have that conversation. When are you going to have it? What are you going to say?" It puts a lot more reality on the business world we will be entering in just a few short months.

In addition to finishing up my academics, my focus has turned toward preparing for my upcoming move to Boston. I'm in the process of setting up appointments with realtors and building managers while trying to figure out exactly what my summer will look like so I can book some plane tickets. Many classmates are doing the same and, as can be expected, I've heard of many exciting plans for the next few months.

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