My journey in “Broad” began with the orientation program aptly named as “B2B” (Breakthrough to Broad). The setting was professional yet the program was designed to include fun. As the students assembled, we had our first “introduction” to school and one another. The process started with documentations and paper work. I faced a curious case of my name being turned upside down. I do not have a surname and overnight, my name was officially changed to “FNU Rituraj.” In light humor, a remark to those who are coming to United States that they should have a surname unless they want to be known as “FNU!”
Orientation week is targeted at team interactions and understanding team members. As an international student, orientation week helped us to adapt ourselves to the new environment and culture. It gave us the buffer time to put our individual houses in order prior to officially starting our MBA careers. Orientation week also established the general cohort and team structure in which my fellow students and I would interact through the coming semester.
What is the best way to challenge a team than to put them into the line of fire during orientation week with a vigorous case competition! Boys and girls transformed into leaders and business experts either by choice or by necessity. The case competition itself was an eye opener, becoming my first step towards leadership and team work in a richly diverse environment. I learned how to work in a multi-cultural setting with students from China to Ireland. We analyzed and presented the business case of “Delta Airlines vs. Low Cost Carriers” in front of professors and Delta representatives. The atmosphere was challenging and the competition, though stiff, remained friendly. It was fun to learn and evolve as a person through the entire process. What a better way to celebrate the end of orientation week with Second prize in the very first case competition! Yet being a Broad student goes beyond competition; the mantra for success is co-operation and collaboration.
Looking at my experiences and the transformation that I went through during orientation week, I am confident that I took the first confident steps towards becoming an effective business leader.