What I feel the day before the Day 1

After all the work involved in the admission process and the subsequent move to Boston the HBS MBA program finally starts tomorrow. Several welcome events are scheduled for the first two days and classes begin on day three. As I set out on a two year journey that will doubtlessly change my life, I have mixed feelings.


Retrospective: 10%

Since I left my previous job in February, I have spent the most lavish six months of my life. Initially the luxury of “have nothing to do” was spent relaxing but was quickly followed by spending time expanding my healthcare industry network, a field in which I shall be working (and hopefully leading) after graduation. I found the HBS network to be useful here as I was able to meet many interesting people with whom lasting relationships will be built.

Before I came to Boston, I traveled for two months and visited more than 10 countries. Definitely the highlight of first half of the year, it just may be the last long vacation before my retirement. I’d love to offer a travelogue but space requirements preclude this.

Anxious: 20%

Last Friday, I received a big bag from HBS which contained 100 case studies to be used in the first term. In the face of this overwhelming volume of cases, I suddenly lost my confidence and worried about whether I can survive the coming first year at HBS. The cases seemed longer, and more complicated than those I went through in the pre-MBA program.

Can I read three of these a day? Is there a time to sleep? Such basic questions sprang to mind.


Excited: 70%

In spite of all this, the excitement is overshadowing the anxiety. I haven’t met the majority of my 900 classmates yet, but I can’t wait. What I’m looking forward to the most at HBS, is the encounter with many lifelong friends.

Last night, we had a Boston harbor cruising party which was one of the biggest student initiated social events with about 350 students and partners participating. Many of them told me that they had the same anxieties and expectations as I do. Yes, we are in the same boat. Literally.


4 thoughts on “What I feel the day before the Day 1

  1. Pingback: Fridays From The Frontline - Clear Admit Blog

  2. Harold Regan

    I really like your posts, they’re the best I’ve found.
    What did you mean by “pre-MBA program”? Is it something offered by those MBA admission counseling firms? If so, in hindsight, how much did it help you and in what specific areas? What percentage of entering students do you think take such programs to prepare for arriving HBS?

    I guess the essence of my questions is that with such diverse backgrounds/experience of incoming students HBS must be a very “uneven playing field” for incoming students (the huge chunk of consultants & finance types must overwhelm/dominate the RC’s with less relevant back grounds). True?

    1. Harold Regan

      Correction……..I read more of your blog and now understand what you meant by “pre-MBA” program” (it was HBS’s international transition program), which is nice that HBS offers it. But my basic question remains, how can incoming students with little or no business knowledge or experience survive in such a competitive environment. I’m thinking about students who come to HBS with only a military background or only a research science background. Perhaps you would consider doing a blog post on just that topic.


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