One of the many wonderful things about the Wisconsin MBA Program is the myriad of ways to be involved with the MBA Program itself, the greater Wisconsin School of Business, and student peers. One way I have been able to become more involved this year is through student organization activity. There are 17 student run organizations for MBA students ranging from more academic clubs like the Graduate Finance Club and the MBA Consulting Club; to professional development clubs such as Toastmasters; to social clubs such as the Food & Wine Club; as well as a club for families and significant others of MBA students - the Joint Venture Club. I am on the executive board for two organizations and have been an active participant in many organizations this year. A few of the highlights include:
- Net Impact Conference in Minneapolis, MN. Net Impact is a nationwide organization that seeks to incorporate social responsibility into everyday business culture. The annual Net Impact Conference brings together 2,500 graduate and undergraduate students, with business professionals from across the country to learn and share ideas about green, sustainability-driven, and social responsibility opportunities. This was a great experience for my first MBA Conference. I was able to interact with other UW MBA students who were interested in sustainability and corporate responsibility, while listening to high profile speakers such as Dan Pallotta from the Charity Defense Council and Paul Polman from Unilever.
- Graduate Marketing Network (GMN) 24 hour Case Competition. A major part of any business school experience is participating in a case competition. GMN hosts a first year MBA only 24 hour (we only had 16 hours) case competition every year, that bring students together from each of the MBA Centers to participate in an exhausting but exhilarating case competition. This competition was hosted right after winter break, so it was a chance to utilize the key skills from our first semester classes including finance, accounting, and marketing. My team stayed up until 3:30am working on the case (and we were not the last ones to leave the building) and presented at 8am that morning. It was a long exhausting 24 hours, but a fun experience!
- Artful Business Collective (ABC) MBA Arts Showcase. The premiere event for On, Wisconsin! Weekend for new admits is the 'MBA Arts Showcase' produced by ABC. I was able to attend this event during my On, Wisconsin! Weekend in 2014 so I had an idea of what I was in for when I joined the ABC executive board. For the showcase this year, we had 13 visual artists display their work and 10 performance acts featuring 21 MBA students, staff, and faculty. I love that this event brings together everyone in the MBA Program to celebrate the artistic talents of their peers, and gives people a little break from the everyday grind of school work.
- GMN Chicago Cubs game. As part of GMN we took a trip to Chicago to watch the Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers game this spring. Before the game we met with the Senior Director of Marketing for the Chicago Cubs, Allison Miller. Allison gave us some real insights into the interesting and sometimes challenging world of sports marketing and branding, as well as how she entered the field after a career in CPG brand marketing. The trip ended in a Brewers win (sorry Chicago!)