The Fuqua Experience

Duke Cross Continent MBA Class of 2010

The Fuqua Experience

London Leftovers

September 1st, 2009 by Ian Comandao · 5 Comments · General

I’ve never really had jetlag before. Everytime I’ve traveled, it’s always been in steps of 2 days for every 4 hour difference. Understandably, I’m now feeling very lightheaded and have had to forgo Tuesday training for the GAA… and the All Asia Tournament is in 6 weeks. Not that I’d have been able to go anyway, the Games’ weekend is the same weekend as our Term 1 Finals.

It’s all a matter of priorities. Do I sleep or do I chug down 2 liters of coke and plough through 3 chapters of Financial Accounting? Do I spend time with other people in the program and get to know the people behind the names or do I lock myself up with a stolen plate from the lunch buffet and have a midnight snack while, yes, ploughing through another 3 chapters of Financial Accounting?

While I do find it hard to appreciate how some people (I hear) spent 13 of our 14 evenings indoors, preferring to socialise with pages rather than people, I do understand the reasoning behind it. I mean, we are paying THIS MUCH money to study, not to party. But at the end of the day, I do think that all the school reps and speakers will prove themselves correct: you’ll learn more from other students than you will from books.

In those moments when I’m just about ready to pass out, what makes me smile and think that the effort of this whole endeavor was worth it are the lives and stories of 130 people (half of whom I still don’t know!) who are sharing the journey with me. Not with an exam. Let me correct myself, it’s all a matter of long-term priorities.

But who am I kidding? It’s already 2AM here and I’m just feeling like going out for a run.

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5 Comments so far ↓

  • Randy Zwitch

    When did you write this?

    Looking back on the first residency, I absolutely agree with you. While I’ll spend a bit more time in Dubai studying, I don’t regret the non-stop networking that I did while in London. I learned more about the world from our classmates (including you with all the talk of chicken feet and tendons!) than I could’ve ever learned from reading a book.

    Yes, I’m in the program to learn the technical stuff, but it’s the outside class discussions that will be worth the tuition cost.

  • Ian Comandao

    2am today… and then i actually did go out for a run, at around 3am… got back around 4… and it’s 130 in the afternoon and i just woke up… wtf!?

    i personally would prefer to talk to other people and hear their war stories, it’s like a living laboratory where everyone is a walking case study in something. i’m sure we can get more insider stuff out of people who’ve worked in good companies, and in bad corporations and know what it’s like on the inside.

    in any event, i’m sure dubai will be less hectic… ok, well, i’m not sure… i hope.

  • Syed Husain

    Heck, I wasn’t even out socializing and I failed the mid term miserably. Looking back I would rather have been outside having fun than studying for an exam I was going to fail. I’m going to have to put my life on hold while I get a hold on accounting.

  • Randy Zwitch

    Thanks Ian. For a second, I was thinking “he couldn’t possibly be going for a run that late now, back in the real world. Must be a draft post from London.” Glad to see that you’re carrying on the late night tradition!

    Syed, I think we’re all in the same relative position, that this first residency was to test the waters of what the program would really be like. I think I went out too much, you think you spent too much time stressing. In either case, there’s definitely some make-up to be done! On the bright side, I’m glad the “test residency” could be on Accounting, where I’m not too strong anyway. I’d be more disappointed if I did poorly in a class that I should be good at, like Econ or Stat.

  • matthewdbenson

    I’ve got to second this.

    The books will still be on the bookshelf 1 year after the program finishes, and you can always dip back into them (in fact you’ll probably need to either for some specific new fact or because you’ve forgotten something) – the people however will likely have dispersed themselves across the globe again …

    Don’t ignore the study, but make sure you also don’t ignore the people (ie, burn the candle at both ends, and sleep when the program finishes!)

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