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Meet the Study Group

Posted by Rebecca on 31 August 2008

It’s amazing how after all these years it’s possible to still get “first day of school” butterflies.  Fortunately they didn’t last long, thanks due in part to the fact that I knew so many classmates from Admits Weekend, nightly Flat Hunters Pub Crawls, drop-in rugby and Facebook – all of which got us together well in advance of Orientation.  Everyone I have met so far has been outgoing, friendly and with an interesting story to tell, which makes the whole experience very enjoyable.

I met my study group for the first time on Tuesday.  You hear a lot about the diversity at London Business School during the admissions process, and my group is no exception:

·         Guy: background in computer science and mathematics, previously worked in software development in Israel

·         Sami: born in the UK to Lebanese parents, spent the last few years in Saudi Arabia working on workforce simulation, modeling and forecasting for the national oil and gas supplier.

·         Sebastian: background in business administration, previously worked as a corporate banker in Chile

·         Ananth: most recently served as the CFO for his own internet marketing company in India

·         Thibaud: studied law in the UK and France before starting his own business, then worked for the EU Commission in the international trade division

·         And me: Canadian with an undergraduate degree in business previously working as a strategy consultant in San Francisco.

As I listened to each of them introduce themselves, the old Sesame Street song was playing in my head: “One of these things is not like the others, one of these things just doesn’t belong…” but then I realized that each of them could very well argue the same point: we are all very different from one another, but despite our differences we all belong here at London Business School.

On Thursday we headed out to Reading for some quality team bonding.  At first we behaved in the classic polite but distant way strangers do when thrown into something new.  That changed quickly after our first challenge which involved rigging ropes between trees and suspending a blindfolded Sami between them.  We moved on to climbing wobbly telephone poles two at a time and leaping together for a trapeze, and ascending a series of horizontal logs known as “Jacob’s Ladder”, a task that required three individuals to haul each other up each level.   At each turn I found myself amazed at each person’s ability, willingness to challenge himself and to help others complete the task.

I left the day feeling really good about the prospects for our team: we are six intelligent, creative and group-oriented individuals.  If we can figure out how to climb high ropes courses together, surely we will get through our first Business Statistics assignment.

“And now it’s time to play our game, it’s time to play our game.”

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