Graduation Week: Monday

The festivities have officially begun! My family doesn't get into town until Wednesday, but in the meanwhile, everyone around me has started counting down the days. It's a bit hard to feel too excited right now because my future is so unknown, but I am definitely proud of my accomplishments and in making it to graduation (if you recall, I was very seriously concerned about failing out during my first semester). Naturally, it's a very nostalgic time, so I thought I would take a few moments this week to reflect on my HBS experiences and dig up some memories from each semester. I'm going to try to tackle a semester a day, although I may have to skip Thursday due to commencement/family. These will also likely serve as my last few entries to this blog. Since I started it with the sole purpose of chronicling my HBS adventures, it seems fitting to end it when my time at HBS is also coming to a close. Now, I certainly won't be deleting the blog altogether, so hopefully Harvard Bound can live on and provide inspiration to future HBS students. I'm also toying around with the idea of creating a new blog (likely something less personal since I don't want to publicly disclose exactly where I'm living and working), so I will let you all know once I've made up my mind about that. :)

Without further ado, here are some of my favorite memories from Term 1:

- Analytics: Two years later, I still remember my two-week stint in Analytics as my favorite two weeks of my HBS experience. There was something so magical about that time -- I still insist that it's because all of the "non-traditional" aka interesting students are there, so you've got a whole range of people who can converse about topics more broad than the financial markets or hotel rewards programs (no offense to the i-bankers and consultants out there...if nothing else, you made, and will continue to make, a heck of a lot more money than me!). The academic experience was intense, but everyone was so friendly, so we all bonded as we suffered through the late nights and first finance cases as a group. Even today, two of my closest friends -- Esha and Jun -- were my sectionmates in Analytics (and luckily, my sectionmates in Section G as well!). I will miss you both! Also a shout out to my Analytics learning team who will always have a special place in my heart!

- Bonding with my full-term Learning Team (#18!): We've somewhat lost touch this year since we're no longer meeting every morning, but boy oh boy did we manage to have some fun first semester. Whether we were laughing over our Subarctic Simulation results, Qiao and "Panda Porn," or Aneal and "Sleeper Cell," we always managed to add some fun into our 7am meetings. And even outside of the classroom we became good friends, meeting for dinner and drinks on several occasions. I learned SO very much from these people and hope that I was able to teach them a thing or two as well -- if nothing else, I hope I helped them learn tolerance when helping non-financiers build models. ;)

-My first "fall" and "winter": Seriously folks, people take seasons for granted! Growing up in Florida, it's always been year-round summer, and while some might think that's the ideal, I can tell you that it gets really old, really fast (or at least it does after 20 years of it!). Thus, my first fall and winter in Boston represented such beauty to me. Watching the leaves change and the first drops of snow hit the ground, I felt like a kid in a candy store. I remember one winter afternoon reaching out and touching the snow that covered the bushes when no one was looking so I could see what it felt like. Sadly, I never did get a chance to build a snowman or make a snow angel!

- Exploring Boston: The Duck Tour was a hoot, Boston Common is a beautiful place for an afternoon stroll, the Freedom Trail gives this city such depth and Newbury Street is a not-to-be-missed destination for any (aspiring) fashionista. Although I definitely am leaving without experiencing all that Boston has to offer (I never did make it to the science museum, a Red Sox game or to Cape Cod), I feel that, especially first semester, I got a good dose of what this city has to offer. Other favorites: dinner and drinks at Top of the Hub at the Prudential Center, going to see Coldplay in concert at the TD Bank North Garden, visiting the Boston Aquarium with Tausha and Lauren, cruising around Boston Harbor during orientation week...

- Getting my Term 1 grades! An odd memory for a "favorite," but I just have to pay homage to this fateful day in December (or was it January?) when I saw that I had successfully made it through my first semester. That day was a clear turning point in my HBS career as it marked the moment I was able to let go of a TON of my stress and really enjoy the rest of my RC year.

All right, I'm all tapped of creative juices for now. More memories soon!


Seeing as I have been gone from the blogosphere for several weeks now, I thought it was high time that I write an entry explaining my absence. Firstly, exams, papers and group projects took up a ton of my time during the last two weeks of April. I am so happy that everything is done and turned in -- I believe that I'll get my final set of grades next week. While I already feel a sort of sadness/nostalgia knowing that I'll never again read an HBS case and sit down to discuss it in Aldrich, I feel proud to have completed two years of intense education here. In a lot of ways, I'm ready for a break. I will look forward to coming home from work at the end of the day and not having to worry about a case analysis due the following morning. :)

On the 30th of April, I went in for surgery. I don't want to go into too much detail, since it's pretty personal, but I can tell you that everything went well, despite recovering in the hospital for about a week. My mom has been up in Boston with me since the surgery, and I am so thankful for her assistance and support. Also, the HBS Community has really come out in full force to help my mom and I in any and every way that we need it. I am so impressed by how thoughtful and gracious everyone has been.

As of two days ago, I am re-settled on the HBS campus and getting ready for graduation, which is in about 3 weeks. Then on May 29th, I've got a flight scheduled to Florida and who knows how long I'll be there living in my mom's living room on an air mattress. Eek!

Since I'm still in recovery from my surgery, I won't be doing anything too exciting over the next couple weeks, other than catching up with friends, reading some good books and continuing what is seemingly a never-ending job search. I probably won't be around blogging much, unless something exciting unexpectedly happens, although I will get back online the week of graduation so I can document all of our commencement activities (things happen over several days here and I will be taking lots of pictures to share!).

Until then, thanks for your patience and support! Also, if you're interested, Harvard Bound secured 5th place in the Clear Admit Best of Blogging Awards, yippee!