Forecast for my weekend in Park City, Utah

Courtesy of

Highs in the upper 20s? Yikes, that's a good 10 degrees colder than it is here in Boston. Long underwear, it's time for you to come out of hibernation.

The Beginning of the End, Cases Purging and a Cowardly Commentor

So here I am, blogging on my very last first day of classes ever (or at least for the foreseeable future!). It is SO hard to believe that my HBS experience is almost over. It feels like just yesterday I was on my second Disney cruise with my mom reading my acceptance e-mail and now there's just five months and 11 weeks of class in between me and graduation. Weird. The good news is that I have an AMAZING last semester of courses that I can't wait to really dig into. I think I might have mentioned them before, but for good measure here they are again (drumroll, please):

  • 1) Managing Innovation
  • 2) Strategic Marketing in Creative Industries (basically the course that made me want to come to HBS)
  • 3) Half Course in Digital Marketing Strategy
  • 4) Half Course in Retailing
  • 5) Competing With Social Networks (another class I've been looking forward to taking since I started here)
  • 6) Field Study on Jordan's Furniture / Norwalk Furniture

Basically, I have class daily from 10am to 1pm, which may very well be the easiest school schedule I've had to date. I temper this statement with the realization that much of my free time will likely be devoted to what will most definitely be a challenging job search (and the rest of it I plan to fill with lots of fun activities like the upcoming Entertainment & Media Club conference, my trip to Sundance Film Festival this weekend [can't wait!] and maybe even a spot on the spring break IXP to Costa Rica [to make up for missing Peru]). I'll be sure to keep you updated as we go along!

In other news, when I got back to Boston this past weekend and started organizing myself for the semester, I started to move all of my case binders from last fall to their final resting place under my bed (where they would join the rest of my cases from RC year) and I almost gave myself a heart attack. I never realized how much space 15, 6" binders can really take up under one's bed. Immediately, I felt the need to purge because the clutter (despite it being under my bed where no one ever sees it) was driving me crazy (not to mention the fact that I never once referred to one of my Finance cases last semester).

Thus, I spent about 3 hours on Sunday evening sifting through every single class binder and consolidating. If I couldn't remember ever having done a particular case? Recycled! If I had negative memories of a particularly difficult cold call? Recycled! If I just plain hated the subject (i.e. Finance)? Recycled! I did keep any cases that I remembered enjoying and nearly every "Course Note" that had teaching materials in it that could be of use in the future. I also kept my ENTIRE Consumer Marketing binder and notebook because, well, Youngme Moon is a marketing goddess and her class will forever remain at the top of my HBS experience. In the end, it felt so good to throw out the old, make room for the new and have a little extra storage space. :)

Now, before I depart for the moment, I have one more item to address. If you are a regular blog reader, you may have noticed that my "Comments" section has recently changed to a Moderated format that no longer accepts comments from Anonymous readers. Although when I started this blog, the intention was to allow anyone to post, even if they felt uncomfortable signing their name, I've recently had to deal with one particularly virulent reader who feels the need to make personal attacks on me featuring multiple expletives and slanderous insults...all while hiding behind the veil of the "Anonymous" feature. Personally, I think that anyone who takes time out of their day to repeatedly post insulting, negative comments on the blog of someone that don't know is only proving that they have no life of their own; however, I also don't want these horrible remarks hanging around the pages of my blog. So for now, comments will remain moderated and you'll have to log in to your gmail or blogger account in order to post. I apologize to those readers that will be inconvenienced by this!

Anywho, that's all for now. Have a great week everyone!

2010 Entertainment & Media Club Conference: IMAGINE!

If you live in the Boston area (or are looking for a place to visit in the next few weeks), register for the 2010 Entertainment & Media Club conference at HBS! The conference is being held on campus on Feb. 12 and features keynote speaker Michael Ovitz (he founded Creative Artists Agency, which represents all the top talent in Hollywood, and he was a former President at The Walt Disney Company). There's also four panels on TV, film, New Media and music -- something for everyone! Registration links can be found on the conference blog: -- early registration ticket discounts last through 1/29/10.

Term 3 Grades and Quick Winter Break Overview

Yesterday our Term 3 grades (aka EC year Fall Semester) were released and let's just say I was shaking in my boots...again. You would have thought that with nary a finance course in my schedule I'd finally relax about grades, but this time I was more worried that I had gotten my hopes up for GOOD grades and would find myself disappointed. You see, as I've explained before, HBS courses are graded on a forced curve and students receive a 1, 2 or 3, denoting their status within that curve. Only the top 20% of the class can receive a one and the bottom 10% of the class MUST receive a three (with the middle 70% of the class receiving a two). In my RC year, I received 2s in every class except finance, and although it felt good at the time to be average among some of the smartest people I've ever met, I have to admit that I've secretly been pining for at least one 1. This pining got even stronger this year when I was taking classes that I actually liked and felt like I could relate to. I mean, what better confirmation of your skills/career path is there than to excel in one of your favorite courses? Ok, tangent over.

So there I was, 2pm on the dot, logging onto MyHBS and holding my breath. I clicked into the Grades Web site and BANG! The first thing I see is a beautiful, shiny (well not so much) number ONE next to not one but TWO classes. Holy hell, I got TWO ONES!!!! Ahhhhhh!

In the end, I got a one in the two classes for which I wrote final papers versus taking a dreaded HBS exam (at which I admittedly suck) -- Competing Through Business Models (wrote a paper on the competition between Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando theme parks) and Authentic Leadership Development (a fluffier course where your final paper was basically a creative writing assignment...hello journalism degree!). I got a 2 in Consumer Marketing (figured as much) and happily got a 2 in Managing Service Operations (I didn't participate as much in this class so was worried I might get a 3). Most surprisingly though, I was given a 3 in Manging Human Capital which shocked me beyond belief. I spoke nearly 20 times in that class (and thought I made good comments, otherwise why would he have continued to call on me?) and thought the exam was pretty easy. Apparently I screwed something up there, but am not sure what, so I plan to meet with the professor when I get back to school so I can understand where I went wrong. Overall though, I'm SO happy. Can I repeat this in my last semester? We'll see!

And before I leave you all, I really do need to blog about my winter break considering it's 5.5 weeks long (although unfortunately most of those weeks have been spent doing absolutely nothing).

When I left Boston, I first headed to Pennsylvania to see family for a few days and while there I met my estranged father whom I hadn't seen in 20 years. I also toured Amish country with my cousins, went to a WaWa for the first time (yum, their coffee really WAS good!) and played LOTS of Scrabble (and lost every time!). I flew home to Florida on the 17th (barely escaping a ridiculous ice/snow storm) and my mom and I left for our third Disney cruise on the morning of the 19th.

I know, you're probably wondering why my mom and I continue to go on Disney cruises when neither of us have young children, but seriously, I can promise you that Disney does everything better than other cruise lines. The cabins are spacious and well decorated, the dining is spectacular, the ship is pristine and because it's a family atmosphere, you're not walking around in a cloud of smoke or watching drunk people fall all over the place for a week. It's refreshing!

This cruise was particularly special because it was a Christmas cruise so the ship was all decorated for the holidays and we had two special holiday meals on board. We also received some "gifts" from Santa, like a 2010 calendar, a box of delicious chocolates, LOTS of Christmas cookies and a limited edition lithograph signed by the artist (Don "Ducky" Williams is one of the best Disney character illustrators ever!).

One of the best parts of the cruise was dining with another mother and daughter around the same ages from Kentucky. We wound up having so much in common! I think we had the most fun at the character breakfast on Christmas Eve. We all dressed in red to be festive and the waiters had some fun making Disney "hats" for us with napkins. Do you like our "Mickey Ears" in this photo? Yes, those are meal covers on our heads connected with napkins!

Truth be told, we were sort of ready to debark at the end of the week (my mom started feeling ill about halfway through the cruise and wound up being admitted to the hospital for 3 days once we returned...crazy, I know, and also the reason I am not on the Peru IXP right now), but we're already talking about trying to save up for the Alaskan cruise in the summer of 2011. A long way off, but two gals can dream, right?

That's all for now guys! I'll try to blog again before returning to Boston (that is if anything exciting happens). If not, I'll see you back in the freezing northeast!

Harvard Bound receives "Best MBA Student Blog" Award from MBA Programs Online!

Hey everyone!

I'm so sorry that it has been so long since I've last blogged. A lot has happened in my personal life in the last few weeks, plus I was on a week long Disney cruise with my mom for Christmas (I'll blog about that in the next few days). In the meanwhile though, I wanted to let you all know that Harvard Bound was chosen for an award (our first award, yay!). A big thank you to for recognizing this blog as one of the Best MBA Student Blogs! Check out our blog profile at [] and grab a peek at our award below. :)