It has been one week since I came back from my INSEAD Campus visit and I think its high time to post a debrief, lest I forget it. The views presented here are mine and might not represent the generic view. I would divide the debrief into multiple parts: The reaching there and getting out bits and the core event bits.In House Event - Intro by the Admissions Director
This was a general presentation about the INSEAD MBA program and was more or less a repitition of what is already available on the website and the MBA Brochure. The exchange within Campuses and the Wharton Exchange was highlighted in the presentation. The short presentation was followed by a sample class.In House Event - Sample Class - Operations and Technology
We had a special class for the In-house event attendees and Prof. Ludo Van der Heyden took the class. He taught at Yale before returning to Europe and joining INSEAD. Must have been in his early 60s.
The case study for the class was video based, which i found particularly interesting. The topic was Productivity and the scope was definition of productivity in non conventional businesses like a General Hospital vs. a Speciality Clinic. We saw a video about Shouldice Hospital http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shouldice_Hernia_Centre
and discussed the secret behind its success. In House Event - Intro by the Admissions Manager
The Admissions Manager talked about the Admission Criteria and highlited the importance of four core criteria:
Leadership Potential: To be shown in essays and recommendation letters.
Academic Capacity: GPAs and GMAT.
Intercultural Competence/International Outlook: Through travel, work and languauges spoken.
Ability to contribute to the INSEAD experience: Through Essays and Alumni Interviews. The interviewers make it a point to see if you fit into the general INSEAD environment and if they can see you as one of their study group mates.
She also mentioned that one should ideally press the SUBMIT button on the application a couple of days before the deadline. The day of the deadline is really hectic and one might not be able to submit properly.In House Event - Presentation by Career Services
The Career Services lady talked about the industry contacts that they have and that they function as vital links between the students and Companies. Their services are also available to the INSEAD alumni and its practically a life long connection. They have had a tough time in 2009 and the number of students going to Finance has come down. She showed us the current CV book, which had resumes of about 400 students. Guess the HR departments have a lot to read before they shortlist their candidates. The students get a lot of support from the Career Services and the Alumni, but in the end it all upto the candidate himself. One has to be real good to land the plum job. The brand just gets you the contacts, rest is all upto you.In House Event - Q&A with current students
Four current students came to talk to us for about 30 min.
[*] Japanese Engineer with 10 yrs work-ex. Lives with wife and son on campus.
[*] Brazilian girl with Procurement Management experience. 3-4 years work ex.
[*] Columbian Girl with some work-ex in homeland and France.
[*] Belgian guy with work-ex in Greek and Chinese olympic games. Has studies Mandarin Studies in UK.
A sample of questions:
- Their reasons for coming to INSEAD
- Their experiences with intercultural study groups
- One thing that they would change about INSEAD
- most said nothing. One said that the 1 yr was too fast. He would like to spend more time learning.
- How to better prepare for joining the program
- business courses for engineers.
- Chateau parties
- Is living in Paris and travelling everyday possible
- Straight NO In House Event - Cocktail and Snacks with students and Admissions Manager
Great snacks and wine. Very well organized. All credit goes to the organizer Andrew Bueno. I realized that there were people who flew down from Russia, Serbia, London, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania etc for the event. Imagine if the inhouse event was so international, how the actual program would be. We talk to the Admissions Manager about GPA and GMAT criteria and the ways one can demonstrate leadership potential. There were 2-3 guys from the Sept 2010 entry waitlist.Reaching there and getting out
Getting there was not as troublefree as I had expected it to be, but was nevertheless great. Arrived on Paris East and had to go to Paris-Lyon for the train to Fontainblau-Avon. The 3 km stretch took 30 min by a taxi. I had read that there is no Metro connection between the two stations and thought that taxi would be a good idea. My bad that I didn't know about the Parisian Traffic. I missed the train I wanted, but was nevertheless on time for the Event.
We had a INSEAD bus waiting for us at the Fontainblau Station which took 10 mins to take us there. We met Andrew Bueno at the Reception and he led us to AMPHI 2, where the event was scheduled.
A bus took us to the station after the event. Met other visitors on the train and spontaneousily planned a post dinner drinks session in Paris.
All in all a very insightful trip and now I can relate very well to INSEAD. I would definitely recommend a visit to anyone applying to INSEAD.
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