10 things we miss about B-school
The author talks to students from various B-schools within and across the continent who tell us about what they miss the most about their school.
For many, days spent in a management school are looked back with nostalgia. We all want to go back to the days of abandon, before we stepped into this crazy stressful corporate life.
Days where our biggest worry was an overdue assignment and intellectual debates ran late into the night. Of summer romances and winters spent with hands curled around mugs of tea. Here are some things that we miss most about our B-School days!!
1) The simplicity of life
In a world where lives are complicated and relationships complex, we all miss the simplicity of life. Living with others with a shared goal that degree at the end and a job that is the envy of others!
Anuj Khurana from MICA, and now the founder of the digital agency AJency.in says tongue in cheek "I miss thinking that the world outside was better/smarter/shinier. I miss my ignorance, naivety and stupidity. Now I am worldly wise and it just isn't as much fun! I also miss people talking about people saying things like 'real life application' and 'education is a non-stop process' with a straight face!"
You miss living with like minded people
2) Community Living
For many, the experience of living with many like minded people is what is most missed.
Each person is from different walks of life and this variety is what makes getting to know them just as exciting.
Says Tracey Moon from Northwestern University, Kellogs School of Management who now is a Sr. Account Executive at Cognizant Technology Solutions, "I miss having a group of people that I completely trust to work through problems, bounce ideas off, laugh with! The entire experience."
'I miss the simplicity of measuring success'
Even though we keep running along in the rat race in life, the race never really compares to the competitiveness of B-Schools.
A bunch of highly intelligent students trying to outdo each other and prove a point to themselves can be quite a sight!
Neeraj Gulati, Director Digital at Universal McCann hints at how different life was then "I miss the simplicity of measuring success. Get higher CGPA and you are the best!"
'I miss dining together with my pals'
4) The canteen
However much one may crib about the food (or lack of) in college, the canteen and the hours spent there are often the ones missed the most.
Whether it is steaming maggi after a particularly tough exam or endless cups of tea to keep one company late in the night, the canteen is sorely missed!
Even the food in the mess that is usually a mess, is looked back upon with rose tinted glasses!
Moumita Das who is now pursuing her PHD in Marketing from HEC Paris says "I miss dining together with my pals. Felt like dining with the 'family' each day...and that too the family that I chose to hang out with. The long random conversations along with dinner, the catching up that happened and the plans for how to manage / escape the next assignments - I really miss it all!"
'The education that was not in text books'
5) Reality check
Coming from secure environments, management schools are often where one learns to swim at the deep end. Knowledge and the thirst of it in many, keeps one's vanity in check.
Agrees Suprateep Maitra who did his MBA from IIT Delhi and now is a Sr. Business Development Manager at Syntel "Discovering everyday my level of ignorance about the world and people in general 5 years down it's still a bottomless pit I am trying to fathom. The education that was not in text books but in real life application of solutions for problems. I may have forgotten many a tool of the text books - but the real education has remained. Miss that constant learning and re-learning process about business and people who make it work".
6) Travelling with friends
No more living at home and great friends together are often the perfect combination for a few weekend trips.
Second year, when the classes were not as rigorous and one has to rely more on self study for the thesis, is the perfect time to pack your bags and plan a trip with a group of friends.
With barely any money to spend and an adventurous mind, one doesn't have any qualms of travelling by local transport, finding new and economical places to visit and things to do.
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Competitions are intellectually stimulating and some just pure fun
7) College Fests
Undergraduate college fests are usually about fun and frolic but management school fests are serious business.
A fest is typically as if the circus has come to town! Students travel from across the country and the globe to attend the popular ones like 'Chaos' at IIM A and literally camp in the lawns if accommodation runs out.
Competitions, some intellectually stimulating and some just pure fun, run late into the night and entertainment includes concerts, fashion shows and friendly sports matches.
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'I miss that we had all the time in the world'
8) The image in the mirror
College is the time that most people are most conscious about how they look and spend a lot of time maintaining themselves and keeping fit.
It is not unusual to see an impromptu game of volleyball in the wee hours of the morning while another group goes off for a morning walk!
Megha Manchanda, an advertising professional at JWT says with a twinkle in her eye "I miss being thin!! Everyone reminisces about how thin/ glamorous/ crazy they were in college".
In today's crazy life, where there is not a moment free to pause and smell the roses, an idyllic lifestyle like that on campus seems like a distant dream.
The last few months of management school barely ever have classes and are the perfect time to read up that book or hone your tennis skills. It may be very long before you have this kind of time again on your hands.
Megha adds "I miss that we had all the time in the world. There seems to be no time for anything anymore!"
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'Each festival is celebrated with great aplomb'
10) Celebrating with friendsWith festivals being a family sedate affair, it is only in B-Schools that one gets the opportunity to celebrate them with friends.
Be it Diwali or Christmas, each festival is celebrated with great aplomb. Also missed are the parties that go into the wee hours of the morning. With no stress apart from getting up in time for the next lecture, one can let their hair down and enjoy!!
Harnoor Channi-Tiwary is the founder of Journey My Way, a personalised travel advisory firm journeymyway.com.