Friday, June 03, 2005

Now for the OP

Tommorrow morning my flight leaves and heads to Philly for the Consortium's Orientation Program. The OP is an opportunity for students to network with fellow students and professionals, attend workshops, and interview for internships. I have heard that it is a lot of fun and a wonderful opportunity so I definitely look forward to it. I have apprehensions, however. Once again I'll rant about how I do not have a clear path about what it is that I want to do in the future. I want to have a focus so that 1)I can prepare properly and 2) I can narrow down the employers that I want to visit at the conference. I'm trying not to let it worry me too much, since I know there is much more to the OP than finding a job. I am a little concerned also about little info that I dont really know about and forgot to ask. Like details of my travel and how to dress. Nonetheless, I'm excited and ready to begin my weekend. We'll see how it goes!

Friday, May 20, 2005

And the money issues continue

I'm still concerned about how I'm going to make it financially in the next two years. What I dont like is the fact that you cant even get financial aid funds until 10 days before classes start. So I first had a $1200 acceptance fee to pay, then I need to make a deposit on my apt, then there's the quant review which is $500...just to name the ones that come off the top of my head. And I dont have hardly any credit cards that I'm willing to blow up...so I am seriously hustling here.

Oh yeah, I got dinged by Toigo last week, so much for scholarship money. I'm sure it will work out somehow. We'll see.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

The Intimidation Factor

I am starting to get a little concerned about how I will stand out compared to fellow students at CMU. My one issue is that I don't have a lot of work experience. Another issue is that I really don't know where I want to go in life. My MBA pursuit goes something like this...

In about my junior/senior years of undergrad, I looked to my future and decided on how I wanted things to go. Outside of my professional life, I wanted to get married in my mid-20's and have kids in the late 20's so that I'm not a super-old parent and feel like dealing with children. I wanted to have the ability to do what I feel like doing - including the ability to travel and go out whenever, meaning being financially comfortable. I already knew that my personal life was more important than my worklife, so then I aimed to revolve worklife around this. So, my best bet seemed to be to work and then get all the schooling done as early as possible. So, I initially looked for job offers where I would get tuition reimbursement so that I could go to school part-time and finish in a few years. That set me up to be done with school at 25, then pursue my personal life while working at the same time.

Obviously things changed.

When I started working, I started looking into different programs being offered. Then my supervisor told me about the Consortium. I talked with many part-time and full-time students and full-time seemed undoubtedly like the way to go. Beyond that, seeing that I could go to a top program was a new goal for me to shoot for. I honestly never thought I would get into CMU, but it took a minute for me to realize that I had it goin on! So that leaves me now about to go to school, which is great because I'll still be done by 25 and I get to do it full-time, however I lack one real essential element: work experience!

I'm not worried students outshining me in class - I think I can hang. What I am concerned about, however, is how the recruiting process will turn out. I am going against students who have had 5+ years of quality work experience, and I have only had 1. I'm apprehensive about how that will pan out. In addition to that, the one thing I never really considered is the fact that I have not completely decided what I want to do in life. At this point, I feel like I want to stay in the operations field, but the more I discover other fields and interests, the less certain I am about this plan. Hmmm...never occured to me to actually figure out my ultimate goal in life. The Consortium OP is coming up in a couple of weeks and there will be employers there interviewing for internships. This is way too soon! So I have been doing some serious soul searching lately. I think at this point, I am going to be pretty open to a lot of things. Now, there are some things which unless someone tells me something really big that I dont know, I know I dont want to go into - like technology or investment banking. But I'm looking at quite a few other things, and I figure right now, I'll just try to get up to date on all of them and see what comes of it.

We'll see how it goes.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Expenses, expenses, expenses

So as I've mentioned before, one of my issues is the money thing. I had initially planned to do whatever I had to do in order to not take out ANY loans whatsoever. I'm learning that this is much easier said than done. During my undergrad, I had a full tuition/fees scholarship and I ended up being about $20K in debt by the time I got out. I feel like the scholarship was such a waste, since I still have to pay all that money back. And during that time I could've done many things like apply for more scholarships, subsidized housing, and just much better planning overall. So now that I am paying these freaking loans back, I don't want anymore.

Sadly, that is pretty obviously not going to happen. My tuition and fees are fine, but there is so much more! Here is roughly what I figure I'll spend this next year:

Housing (studio apt about $450/month) ~ $5400
Notebook Computer ~ $2000
Books (for each mini-semester @ $400) ~ $1600
Bills (Car note, phone @ 220) ~ 2700
Living (Food, Electric, Entertainment, etc) ~ $6000

Total = $17,700

An additional $20K in loans for each year?! That completely freaks me out. Well, hopefully I'll be able to apply internship money to my living for the next year and maybe find some shortcuts during my first year. But this is really not what I want. So many people are like, "Oh its nothing, you'll pay it all back." NO - I don't want to pay stuff back. I would love to be done with school once its over.

And I understand that many people have no choice but to borrow the entire amount and have $100K loans when they get out. If that was my only choice, I really don't think I would be going the full-time route. It amazes me, on the Business Week forum, many people will talk about how they're passing up Consortium fellowships in order to come completely out of pocket for a school with only a slightly better name. I won't argue that you sound more impressive having graduated from Harvard opposed to Carnegie-Mellon, but is it really worth the additional debt you'll rack up? People claim it is - I just have yet to see it.

So we'll see when I look back 2 years from now, how much of a financial slump I put myself in.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Enron - Great Movie.

Over the weekend I went to see the Enron documentary. I highly recommend it to everyone. I had a basic understanding of the things that went on behind the scandel, but the details are just shocking. After the movie, I had to laugh to my boyfriend and say, "I can't believe these morons completely destroyed the company and just tried to walk away from it!" I mean, seriously, how the heck do you think you can make all this money, leave everyone else completely broke, and just leave the company or cash in all your stocks? What a bunch of losers!

That movie seriously made me think about my future in corporate America. Like how I just don't think I can trust anyone. It's sad how greed can make you do such stupid things at the expense of other people. I pretty much believe that everyone can and should be forgiven for the wrongdoings in life, but I question in for the Enron execs. I think that unless you give up all the money you made in being straight up evil, your only option is to go to hell and have everyone hate you for the rest of your life.

I'm done preaching now.

Friday, April 29, 2005

Somebody get me outta here!

So the bad thing I got goin for me right now is the complete lack of motivation that I have to do anything at work. It's terrible. I get here, and do a meeting or two. And just stare at the screen for a while, then start checkin my mail and all other types of non work-related stuff. Oh, and I just beg for anyone to start a conversation with me. I seriously talk the whole day away. It sucks too because I have stuff that I should be doing, but none of it appeals to me enough for me to actually do it. It's not secret that this is as consistent as my blogs are going to be, since they are also a reflection of my boredom. Oh well. Back to vegging.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Ahem....Allow me to introduce myself

So besides the fact that I am a future MBA student, there's more detail to me...

I am currently 23 years old and I live in Detroit, MI. I just graduated from Western Michigan University last August with a degree in Supply Chain Management (but at WMU they call it ISM2 - I never say that cuz no one would know what the heck I was taking about). I currently work at Ford Motor Company, where I have been for all of 8 months - plus 4 for my internship. I work in the Purchasing department and that's kind of but not really what I plan on going into.

So why am I getting my MBA now? There are quite a few answers for this depending on my need to impress you. One reason is that I plan to progress pretty far with my education (eventually earning a Ph D) and I want to continue to learn throughout my career, and now I'm ready for the next step. Also, I really want to get my MBA full-time and go to a good program, like CMU, and I just can't do that as feasibly with a husband and kids. So instead of risking the chance of not doing it cuz of obligations, I'm doing it early while the family doesnt exist.

I plan to go into Operations, perhaps doing some consulting so there may be some finance mixed in there. I ultimately want to work in manufacturing, concentrating on improving costs. The auto industry in the U.S. is an ugly dying monster - we gotta save it!

Despite the fact that I'll pretty much (at least as far as I can tell now) focus on the B-school experience, I have other interests in life. One is my boyfriend, who I have been with for almost 3 years and who I'll have to bear to live without in Pittsburgh. I confident that it'll go great for us. I love music and was originally a music major in school before I switched to business...since that's a normal thing to do. I play the flute, usually classical, but my boyfriend and I have been gettin me exposed to more genres lately. I love warm weather and outdoorsy stuff, particularly bike riding, roller blading, and tennis. (So why do I live in Michigan? I have no idea.) I also love animals. I only have an iguana because I am so irresponsible and busy right now and would completely depress a dog or cat from lack of attention. I also have a huge weakness for shopping, which lately I havnt done cuz I need to gain control of myself.

And ummm....that's about as interesting as I get!