MBA1's at EIF
Orientation week is all about welcoming the new class of MBAs to Illinois and to the program. As part of his welcome speech, Dean Stig Lanesskog talks about the three pillars that we should always keep in mind as we navigate through our new experience: create your story, build your network and give back.
Its no secret that as MBAs we spend a majority of our time thinking about how to create the perfect story, manage all our coursework and start our career search. However, its the third pillar that really gives us a chance to tap into the world outside the classroom and make a difference. The community service portion of orientation week is not only important because it provides students with an opportunity to work as a team, but it allows them make a difference to the community that supports them.
This year, we gave students the option to volunteer for 3 different organizations: Habitat for Humanity, The Eastern Illinois Foodbank and the Champaign Park District. On Saturday August 21st, the MBA Class of 2012 got to work!
At the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, students were asked to reorganize the storage room where various supplies for Habitat builds are kept. This was an important project for the ReStore because they constantly have donated inventory moving through the facility and with a limited number of employees, it’s hard to keep up with everything!
Meanwhile, another group of students was braving the heat at the Downtown Champaign Festival of the Arts. Here students were asked to help with set-up and tear down of artist tents, as well as assist the artists and vendors with their booths.
Finally, the Eastern Illinois Foodbank sponsors a Farmer’s Market every Saturday in Urbana. MBA students who volunteered at the market helped set up the produce stands and clean up after all the shoppers had left.
In addition to the service projects on Saturday, the MBA was asked to volunteer at the Illinois Special Olympics Bowling Tournament. This is the second year in a row that we have helped with this event, and it is one of our favorite! Students help the competitors keep score of their games, serve as a cheering section and help present medals during the awards ceremony.
While we are only able to give a few hours of our time, we know that our willingness to help makes a huge difference. It’s easy to get lost in books, papers and resumes and these types of activities serve as a way for us to keep things in perspective and continue to grow as individuals.