It’s been about a month since I arrived in Italy and after the craziness of moving and jumping into classes settled down I finally had a chance to start enjoy Milan! Precourses are almost over, the rest of the class gets in for Welcome Week next week, and this weekend about 50 current students and alums are heading to Portofino for the annual Rolex Regatta/MBA Cup that Bocconi hosts for many other top b-schools all over Europe and the US. On top of that, my wonderful mother flew into town on Friday dragging two giant suitcases filled with my stuff and has been helping me with errands and shopping this past weekend. This month has been hectic and stressful with school, but also exciting and fun with meeting my classmates and learning a new language. I’ll go into more detail about all this after my exams next week, but until then here are a few personal insights into my new city…
Things I love about Milan:
Crazy Lady Gaga-esque outfits for Fashion Week
The speedy standing-at-the-counter espresso runs
Guys in suits with motorcycle helmets
Guys in suits with gelato cones
Guys in suits with man purses
The classic Milanese style apartments and buildings
Things that I’m not thrilled about in Milan:
The overly excessive dog poop on the streets
The cigarette smell that gets into your clothes and hair after a night out
The beautiful fashion that’s sadly above my student budget
Things I’m learning and/or hope to learn during my time in Milan
The meanings of the numerous Italian hand gestures
That there aren’t enough hours in the day for an MBA student
A decent competency in Italian (check learning another foreign language off the list!)
How to rock heels on cobblestone streets
Sailing! Bring on the MBA Cup!
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Filed under Europe, Italy
It’s day 3 of my whirlwind adventure in Milano and I am just starting to fully realize the amazing, exciting and slightly chaotic journey that is ahead of me.
To those of you that don’t know the whole story, this past spring I was accepted into the full-time MBA program at SDA Bocconi. After a few years of looking into programs all over the world and narrowing down the list of what is the best choice for me, I was pleasantly surprised when my interests aligned so well with what Bocconi has to offer. When I first tell people about my school choice, I’m usually faced with the same reaction:
“Europe? What made you want to study there?”
It’s true, coming from the US where there are so many reputable b-schools around, it may seem a little abnormal to purposefully choose to apply elsewhere. However, for me an international experience was key in what I wanted out of my MBA experience; what better way to get that than to put myself out of my comfort zone and get my master’s while simultaneously exposing myself to a whole new culture. Furthermore, the extremely international student body was a huge draw to me. I don’t know if the statistics are out yet for my current class, but there are 34 nationalities represented in the 2012 MBA class. I am only now starting to meet my classmates in person, but from being a part of our Facebook group these past few months I have gotten to “know” them and already feel that I am learning so much just from hearing about their experiences in their own countries. Like how Dina from Cairo told us about the violence that happened in Nile City at the beginning of the month that broke out right in front of her office building. Or of how Dmitriy from Russia had a ticket to Milano until Windjet went bankrupt and put a damper on his travel plans. Aydin from Turkey even just told me today about how the company he worked for is working on getting a new taxi design for New York cabs! Classes haven’t even started and yet I’m already learning more than I would get out of just reading the morning paper.
As I sat and enjoyed aperitivo with some other classmates today while watching a rerun of last week’s Barcelona/Real Madrid game, a huge smile crept on my face in anticipation of what’s to come. I think Italy and I will get along just fine this year.
Representing us crazy Americans.
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Filed under Europe, Italy
Before I get into all the important details of how my move’s been going, I thought I would start with this: I’m going to get so fat here.
It’s day 2 of me being in Milano and all I’ve eaten is bread. Bread with olives, with eggplant, with tomatoes. It kind of almost seemed healthy until I remembered the common factor in each of those meals. And before I got here I was somewhat optimistic of a regular workout routine, I even went crazy and imagined myself finding a Pilates studio. However, once I arrived and realized that between being stuck on campus from 8am – 11pm and well, sleeping, I’m not sure how much of that will actually be possible. Maybe there’s a Lazy Runner’s club on campus. Or perhaps I should start one… ::light bulb::
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Wow. Has it already been one year?
A year ago I wrote my first post for Let’s Take the Scenic Route. Back then, I wasn’t looking farther than the four month journey ahead and my blog was not much more than a way for my friends and family to keep tabs on me while I was galavanting around the world. I am grateful to have people in my life that encouraged me to continue with my blog and use it as not only a creative outlet but also a platform for some of my other interests. I do apologize for my lack of posts throughout the last two months (yes, my 3 loyal readers, I have received your complaints), but in all fairness I have a pretty sweet excuse for my online silence.
I haven’t officially posted this yet but I am so extremely stoked to write that in a few weeks I’ll be moving to Milan to get my MBA at one of Europe’s top b-schools, SDA Bocconi. These last 3 months have been a whirlwind of emotions from the round of victory shots when I first got word of my acceptance, to the tears of joy when I finally received my Italian visa after a lengthy and slightly-traumatizing experience, to the pouty face I made when I had to say goodbye to some of my dearest friends in New York. Leaving NYC was surprisingly harder than I thought it would be (after all, it was just a year ago that I was dying to get out) but the six years there didn’t leave me too much worse for wear and I wouldn’t be surprised if I came back sooner than expected anyway.
But today we look ahead! And to come full circle, I am also looking forward to seeing how my blog evolves in the next year as I start this new chapter in my life and throw down some semi-perma roots in Milano. Yes, there will be more food posts and possibly a few meltdown rants during my economics semester, but I’m mostly excited about what I’ll take away from being a part of a highly international class with so many different cultural backgrounds. Oh, and don’t worry, there is still plenty more traveling to be done.
I am so blessed by all that I have experienced this past year. To those in my life reading this, thanks for (willingly) joining me on the ride.
Looks like its time for a change of scenery yet again.
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