MIT Sloan Will Teach You How to Drink from a Fire Hose

In the two weeks of classes that have elapsed so far this fall semester, I have had more information thrown at me than I could ever imagine: decision trees, arbitrage, demand curves, conditional probability, elasticity? Before Sloan, I used the word “elasticity” to talk about jeggings. Oh, the new meanings we learn in business school!

Jeggings: The pre-business school definition of elasticity.

The business school definition of elasticity.

During orientation, we talked about the different zones we could exist in during business school: the comfort zone, the stretch zone, and the panic zone. In the comfort zone, we keep the status quo. In the panic zone, we are flying by the seat of our pants with nothing to grasp onto. The ideal place to be is in the stretch zone, where we grow and learn  – stepping out of the comfort zone just enough to take in new information and change our perceptions of the world around us.

Performing a choreographed dance during the first C-Function of the semester was biggest step that I’ve taken into the stretch zone. The C-Function was hosted by SWIM (Sloan Women in Management) and the theme was the 1980s. Going with the 80s theme, two of my first-year peers, Val and Emily, choreographed dance moves to Conga by Miami Sound Machine (latin pop circa 1985). To me, being able to dance is an important life skill, and it’s one that I don’t have. We practiced our choreography as a group over three half-hour sessions (I also practiced at home with my very patient SO).

Sloanie ladies dancing to Michael Jackson's Thriller.

Sloanie ladies dancing to Michael Jackson’s Thriller.

Fast forward to Thursday night: the night of the C-Function. All of us dancers were dressed in fabulous 80s gear. I was nervous, but excited. In addition to the conga, another group of dancers performed the Thriller dance alongside Tim the Beaver. When it was our turn to perform, we put on a better dance than we had ever practiced. It was a fabulous night and I am so happy to have been a part of it.

I am so grateful to be a part of the Sloan community. Time to prepare for another great and busy week of b-school! Stay tuned readers 🙂

Andrea Schneider

Andrea is an MBA Candidate at MIT Sloan, class of 2016. She grew up in Rhode Island and prior to Sloan, was living and working in Cambridge since 2011. Andrea holds a BS in Chemistry from the University of Rhode Island. Her work experience before MIT Sloan involved product development and commercialization of both consumer and industrial products. Andrea has a passion for visual arts, enjoys watercolor painting, cooking Latin American and Asian style cuisine, and builds bicycles as a hobby.

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