Aloha Aloha !!
The orientation started on Friday with an informal reception. After I checked-in, I registered myself and got my packet that contained best practices for an effective case study, a case study and the facebook. I went to my room, which was a pretty nice room in the Doubletree at the Berkeley Marina. I had a view of the Marina from my room and after freshening up, I joined the reception. The evening passed quickly and it was time for dinner. The dinner started with a very inspiring speech by Dean Lyons about the essence of a Berkeley MBA - Leading through innovation. Dean Shogan gave an insightful speech about the history of UC Berkeley. The party moved to the bar. Most people hung out till late socializing. I was enjoying myself thoroughly but then I realized that I probably should read the case study and left around midnight.
The next day -Saturday- started early. I was late, but I managed to grab a small bite before going into a very practical session about life as a Haas student. Important things like billing, transportation and the Cal identification card were covered. The next activity was a team building activity where we build a Chateaux (out of craft materials) and protect the residents (six eggs) from cannon balls ( tennis balls being fired at 100 miles/hour). It was an hour long task and our chateaux was selected as the most aesthetically designed project. We did not do as well after the firing round. Although, 5 of our residents survived, the other teams had taller structures with more residents surviving. It was a fun exercise.
The Saturday afternoon begun with a trip to Haas. After the group photo, we went to a case study. Interestingly we had a case study on Robert Mondavi winery, and the professor brought bottles of Robert Mondavi wines for the class to enjoy during the case study. It was a fun hour and since was a learning experience for me. Later that afternoon, I attended the financial aid workshop and then it was time to pick up our books that came in a nice ogio backpack.
The evening was a Hawaiian Luau with live singers, a giant roasted pig and awesome food. After the dinner was over we played a game in which we had to identify some of our classmates who had some pretty interesting accomplishments like
- Someone who has been a part of an Olympic team
- Someone who has won a Grammy
- Someone who is the official Spanish voice for Virgin Mobile
- Someone who has trekked above the Artic circle
There were about 30 different accomplishments like these and I immediately started wondering how the hell did I get in? I really don't have any dazzling accomplishments like these, but I was happy to be a part of this group nevertheless. There was music, booze and soon the dance floor got started. I also shaked my booty a bit and went back to mingling with more people. Although, I went to bed at about midnight, we have some really energetic folks, who hit the bars in San Francisco and returned back at 6:00 in the morning.
Sunday morning passed quickly. There were sessions on how to make use of the career services. The list of career services was impressive and I plan to make use of them shortly. The orientation ended with a presentation by Professor Odean. I really _loved_ the presentation and may be I will try to bid for his class on behavioral finance.
In a nutshell, it was a wonderful and information packed weekend. Kudos to the Haas team that organized the event because it ran like a well-oiled machine.
Now it is back to reality - I have opened the wonderful ogio backpack, and seen all the reading that needs to be completed for the OB (Organizational Behavior) class.
It is going to hectic...