MBA-SBP Orientation Day Three

— Chris Johnson,

The third day of orientation was great! I knew we had a long and exciting day based on the agenda, but I eagerly anticipated everything laid out for us. The day’s program listed headshot photos, presentations on analyzing graduate business cases and team deliberation, a presentation by the MBA Sustainable Business Practices 2018 cohort Aspen winners, some rehearsal time for our case presentations, presentations and feedback, and a case debriefing.

We started the day off getting our professional headshot photos taken by our awesome photographer Matt. Matt has been around us since day one of orientation and made the process seamless. I’m excited to see how our photos come out and look forward to using mine on LinkedIn and similar networking/professional channels.

After our photos were taken, we were given amazing presentations on “How to Analyze a Graduate Business Case & Team Deliberations” by Dr. Robert Sroufe and Diane Ramos. Dr. Sroufe did a fantastic job of giving us insight on things to be mindful of not only for the presentation we had on Nespresso today, but that would be useful for us throughout the program. He touched on information ranging from the impacts and priorities for successful planning to the eight sustainable measures to a strategic planning process. Diane followed his presentation with more information on analyzing and did so with such an amazing and unique energy. She made it a point to speak briefly with each of us before beginning, which I thought was great. Diane even took it a step further and presented to us. It was phenomenal. I can’t recall if she prepped for it or not, but I thought it was so incredible for her to show us how to handle a presentation by giving one herself.

The SMBA 2018 cohort Aspen winners took the stage after Dr. Sroufe and Diane and it was quite the treat to see them present. They did such a fantastic job and their presentation was AMAZING. They also took the time to talk with us after and explain how the process was for them, how they went about researching information for the project and so much more.

Let me also mention that we just met the people we were working with the presentations on two days ago. Absolutely bananas, right?! Many of us thought so, but we also knew this was going to be an interesting and challenging experience.Once our time with the SMBA 2018 cohort was complete, we were dismissed to have lunch and work on our case presentations. What an experience! We received the cases yesterday evening and we were instructed to create a presentation that we were to give in front of our class and additional MBA staff in a couple of hours. Let me also mention that we just met the people we were working with the presentations on two days ago. Absolutely bananas, right?! Many of us thought so, but we also knew this was going to be an interesting and challenging experience. I wouldn’t change it for the world! Rushing to eat, talking to try and determine what we would cover, who would research what, etc. It was so much fun!

After rehearsing and working on our presentation content, it was finally time to present. We knew it wasn’t going to the best thing in the world, but we were excited and confident in what we had to present and eager to hear and answer any questions the audience had. My group went first and I thought we did a great job. Of course, there was room for improvement, but I was proud of what we were able to accomplish with the limited amount of time we had to work with. It excited me knowing we would have more opportunity in the future to present on other cases and have more time and in-depth research to blow the socks off the audience next time we have the chance. We received great feedback from the audience after all the presentations were complete. The comments were very helpful and genuine – always a great thing in my book.

We debriefed the case and covered a bit more feedback before concluding class for the evening. We received great insight ranging from PowerPoint pointers to great content advice and which direction to take. I think day three of orientation was great and I’m excited to see what day four and the start of classes will hold for us!

Finally, we ended the night with a fantastic dinner in the Bayer Hall Rotunda. It included my classmates, a few of the 2018 cohorts, and much of the MBA faculty. It was such a beautiful setup and another wonderful opportunity for us to interact and simply enjoy one another’s company. We had Kim Kipin-McDonald of Covestro, LLC as our keynote speaker. She was SUPERB! She shared some great information with us about sustainability and the passion she has for the cause simply radiated throughout the room. It was truly inspiring to witness and hear someone that passionate about making a difference in the world. I was thoroughly impressed with everything today provided.