Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Graduation And Work

Details on commencement recently became available. Almost everything happens over Memorial Day weekend. On the agenda: a faculty reception, a class dinner, rehearsal, and a picnic for family and friends. On Monday, May 28th, we participate in two ceremonies. The first is commencement for Yale University. According to the SOM website:

The University ceremony includes graduating students from all schools at Yale with a lot of pomp and circumstance. Graduating students line up by school on Cross Campus with their Deans and faculty to process into Old Campus led by the Yale band, the University President, and honorees. After everyone gets into Old Campus, the ceremony is reasonably brief: undergraduate academic prizes are given out, degrees are conferred on the graduating students en masse, with the marshals for each school going up to the podium to receive symbolic diplomas from the President, and honorary degrees are conferred. These are always interesting and include famous names from the arts, literature, science, business, etc.

The second ceremony takes place at SOM. This is when we receive our diplomas, in Latin no less.

I ordered my cap and gown a few days ago. My mom – a shorter, older, crazier version of me – has already purchased her plane ticket to New Haven and will be spending a week with me. A couple of friends will also be coming to the ceremony and staying a few days. It will be a motley crew, and I should have my hands full entertaining.

On the work front, I got an email from my company yesterday providing me with next steps in the on-boarding process. I just need to give them a start date. It can be any time over the summer, so long as my first day is a Monday. Though everyone is telling me that I need to take a month or two to go on vacation, I think I’ll go straight to work. I don’t see the value of acquiring more debt. I also need to make a decision about moving my belongings from San Francisco. Do I move in with someone who has already lived in the apartment for a while and not worry about furnishing a place, paying a broker, signing a lease, etc., or do I find an apartment with a friend even though I plan on returning to the Bay Area within a couple years? I need to figure this out . . . and soon.

Spring Break Already

I finished the first quarter of the spring semester today. I had two classes, but missed both of them. The first class was a review of material covered over the term. Given that I went to every class, I didn’t see the value in attending a review session. The other class had a guest speaker. That would have been more interesting, but I decided that I would rather go to the gym instead.

What did I accomplish this quarter? Among other things, I:

  • completed a business plan with the team from my Entrepreneurial Business Planning class,

  • performed a DCF valuation on a company the McKinsey way (NOPLAT, blech), and

  • learned how to run different types of regressions, e.g., using categorical variables.
I also had the opportunity to hear some great guest speakers in my Strategic Leadership across Sectors class, including Sherron Watkins, the Enron “whistleblower.” I particularly enjoyed a conversation I had with her during a break in the class. She seems very cynical about the media and politicians and with good reason. If you ever have a chance to hear her tell her side of the story, I would recommend taking advantage of it.

Next quarter should be good, too. But for the next two-and-a-half weeks, rest and relaxation rule.