Sunday, November 27, 2011

Giving Thanks

The Thanksgiving holiday has passed, and with it our five-day weekend is over.  While my roommates stuck around in Charlottesville and celebrated the holiday with their Darden "family", I went the more traditional route and traveled to New York City to eat turkey with my actual family.  We filled ourselves with turkey, stuffing, string beans, sweet potatoes, brussels sprouts, cranberry sauce, and three different desserts!  I rushed back to Charlottesville for the rivalry football game against Virginia Tech, but the game didn't turn out so well for the Cavaliers, alas.

The holiday season reminds me that it's the time of year to give thanks, so therefore I want to list some of the things that I am thankful for this year at Darden:
  • The professors.  These men and women are world class and pour their efforts into giving students a fantastic educational experience.  The Princeton Review gave Darden its #1 ranking for teaching faculty amongst all business schools, and Darden deserves the ranking.  Students come first for professors here, and I can hardly imagine another school with as much access to faculty as students do here.  Thank you.
  • The staff.  The folks who keep the classrooms impeccably clean and the grounds beautifully maintained.  The lady who always greets me with a smile when I walk into the Abbott Dining Center.  The guys at the computer help desk that deal with all the woes faced by my laptop.  Those in Career Services that work to bring companies on-Grounds and those who will let me schedule Outlook appointments on their calendars to help me sort out my career thoughts.  The people who delivering the catering on-time, every time.  Thank you!
  • Student leadership.  There is always a heavy dose of events on the Darden calendar thanks to the efforts of so many student club leaders, who make time to organize speakers and conferences such that others can show up and learn.  Also, special thanks to the folks on the DSA Social committee – there's always something going on here that students can participate in to get to know one another.  Tailgates, cold calls, bonfires, and other parties are ingrained in student life here and part of the reason we have such a strong community at the school.  To those who tirelessly work the logistics behind these events, thank you!
  • Active students in the classroom.  I'll be honest – classes during second year don't feel the same as first year.  Many have locked down job offers already and feel like they have punched their tickets.  I get that.  To those of you who still show up having read the case, who contribute to the class discussion, and who don't incessantly type out messages on your laptop in class, thank you.  The high-touch nature of the case method is one of the reasons I applied to Darden, and I appreciate the efforts of those students that help all of us learn.
  • My roommates.  Having two guys I get along with, hang out with, and who keep the house clean is great.  Not having strife at the home means more energy to focus on everything going on at school.  Thank you.

Only two weeks to go until winter break here – gosh this passes so quickly!

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