Life at B-School: what can you expect?
To everyone who made it to a good B-School firstly, congratulations. I am sure your cat preparation journey wasn’t a walk in the park so you deserve all the credits. while you might have certain doubts about the next chapter. I assure you. It will be one of the most exciting two years of your life. Life at B-school will be an exhilarating experience as you would be learning from faculties with international exposure in their fields and competing with the best minds across the country. You will be chasing tight deadlines for the next two years on various group projects and individual submissions.
Let’s get one thing clear. You will be facing a lot of rigid deadlines, which won’t be easy. It also means you will be burning the midnight oil more than usual. Multitasking skills are going to be handy. I won’t lie. It will not be easy juggling between 4-5 projects with deadlines almost around the same time. It will be hectic, but you won’t be alone, and that’s the best part. When you hit the submit button at 11:59 PM sharp, The sigh of relief your group breaths would make a piece of music to your ears.
Internship Preparation Saga:
This is probably the most crucial phase where most bonds are cemented for life—starting with resume prep, where you’d seek the guidance of your seniors in shaping your resumes to forming study groups to prepare for your summer placement process. You’d be doing extensive prep for more than a month, where you’ll develop a strong peer network among your batchmates. So be wise to choose your study group. Your study group should be supportive and understanding. From solving cases to deep diving into sector preparation, this phase would be taxing with many coffee/chai sessions where you bond over your everyday problems.
Summer placement Week
The week of summer placements is the most hectic and taxing week in your two-year MBA.During the D-day or technically D-Week, you’ll get loads of help from known and unknown faces in your batch and your seniors. This will probably be the most stressful week at B-School over the next two years. Trust me. This week will be etched in your memory forever as you see your efforts bear fruits and also because of the after-party.
Clubs and Committees:
In most colleges club selection process start pretty early. You’ll have to do a specific set of tasks and clear a few rounds of interviews before you are inducted into your clubs and committees. Trust me. This is again an important week. Clubs offer you the opportunity to bond with your batchmates outside classes and help you grow your network. It’s about expanding your horizon in your field of interest and growing your network with like-minded people. In my personal experience, this is where I met some of my closest buddies from B-School.
Aside from academics, this is one area where the competition is fierce. Various companies organize case competitions to spot the best talents from across colleges. Case competitions usually start around the end of August and continue until January. This is mainly for second years, but many competitions are open to both years. They typically have a team size of 3-5 people, and these competitions generally have multiple rounds going on for months. One advice from my side would be to pick your teammates wisely. Because these competitions are pretty taxing and should be taken for granted by no means, so pick your teammates who have a similar mindset and with whom you have good chemistry. These are areas where you apply what you learn in classrooms, try out new strategies and improve your PPT skills. Do download the unstop app and follow regularly to get a jump on various case competitions.
Sports and Cultural activities:
Everything you have read so far is all about efforts and some highly stressful stuff, So let’s switch gears and look into the fun part of the B-school experience. Sports and cultural activities are a prominent part of B-school life. This is an avenue to escape the highly intense world to destress and relax. Sports is again a big deal in B-Schools. Competitions like Sangram and Sangharsh are some prestigious tournaments where IIMs battle out across various events to clinch the overall title. Most B-Schools celebrate all national festivals with flair. With a ton of cultural activities that contribute to your MBA life’s fun and bright side.
Lastly, the two years of your B-school life are not just about studies. It would be a journey of self-discovery where you’d rediscover what you want and decide on your destination. There will be tons of laughter and glee on the campus amidst all the deadline-chasing tensions. Not to forget, B-schools host some of the best parties. Most B-schools live by the words “Work hard, party harder”.
The two years were the best years of my life, and I hope it is the same for you. All the best – Harish V
Harish is an alum of IIM Bangalore who can’t stop talking about Chelsea FC
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