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  • Back to school again!

    What do a tanagram, a murder mystery and trading geometric shapes have to do with an EMBA program?  Well…everything as it turns out! 

    Leadership & Teams and Strategic Management are our Module 1 courses, which are being taught by professors Northcraft and Michael, respectively.  They each have their own teaching style, and this combination of “joker” and “straight man” makes for a great contrast and an engaging learning experience (I’ll let you guess which is which).  Case study evaluations and classroom discussions have been foundational to the courses so far, supplemented with group exercises and off-site activities.  This approach to teaching has been a welcome reprieve from the lecture-heavy delivery of school years past.  

    Speaking of school years past, I can’t believe how long it’s been since I was in a classroom.  Things haven’t changed…much.  Still lots of school spirit, but rooting interests are definitely fractured (go Rattlers!)…plenty of food to eat except the selection here is WAY better…and the “cool kids” are still around, but they actually pay attention in class!  Needless to say, the class of 2015 consists of a very diverse group of individuals, whose wide variations in world views, professions and educational backgrounds makes for a very rich learning experience.    

    We’ve been assigned our study groups and the teams are starting to get into a rhythm (go Navy Pier!).  Since we’re dispersed throughout the state, and our employers’ expectations of us haven’t changed, it’s important to stay connected virtually to ensure that our assignments are completed on time (bless you Larry and Sergey).  Fortunately, we all have the same objective…to learn and do well.  This brings me to the second-year students and program graduates.  I’ve been very impressed by how supportive they’ve been of the class of 2015.  All have been willing to help us successfully navigate the program.  Our advisors and the program staff are due a tip of the cap as well.

    My wife always sings “Back to School Again” on the first day of school.  My daughters love it, but it’s a constant reminder of the single worst sequel in movie history (Danny Zuko is turning in his grave).  That said, another thing that hasn’t changed is that that I still take terrible school pictures…at least I’m not wearing two-inch thick bifocals this time!  

    Oh well…the infamous module transition is looming, so until next month follow your “head and heart” and don’t get “stuck in the middle”!  

    Michael Carrington (Cool Rider)
    Rydell High Class of ’62 (go Rangers!)

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