Archive for June, 2008

I had the opportunity to attend a Class Visit organized by Ivey Business School at the University of Western Ontario. Ivey is located in London, Ontario which is roughly 2 hours west of Toronto.


The visit was very nicely prepared and the Ivey staff members were extremely well organized vis-à-vis logistics. I had clear instructions on where to pick up my VIA Rail First Class tickets to London. I left early morning so as to be able to catch the 7:50 train from Union Station. (As an aside why do so many N. American cities share names, whether it is street names or railway station names et al?)


My companion during the journey was another prospective Ivey candidate with whom I shared thoughts and perspectives on the Ivey program. We exchanged notes and also talked about each others life stories thus far. The two hour train ride felt like a breeze as I found an interesting person to talk to.


We were met outside the station by our limo driver and joined by another gentleman who was traveling to see Ivey. He had come all the way from Trinidad and Tobago to check out the 4 well known Ontario programs; Rotman, Ivey, Queens and Schulich. I was impressed by his desire to really understand the programs and hence be willing to invest the not insignificant sum of money it would have taken to fly out and reside in Toronto for a week.


We made our way to the Spencer Hall after a brief 12-13 minute drive. What immediately struck was the extremely small size of the building and the desolate environs. It reminded my of some of the secluded rural campuses I saw during my undergraduate campus visits. We were welcomed by the Ivey staff member who had coordinated the logistics for the trip. She was very welcoming and provided us with our obligatory information packets for the day.  


The agenda looked like as follows:


  1. Welcome Session led by Prof. Tony Frost
  2. Faculty Panel
  3. Tour of Spencer
  4. Lunch with Current Students
  5. MBA Class – Prof. Lynn Purdy
  6. Career Management Session followed by breakout
  7. Wrap Up


I was quite happy with the level of thought and planning put into the programming. Going into the day I had three objectives:


  • Determine if the 12 month program is suitable for me
  • What would my significant other do if we had to move to London
  • Does Ivey have the requisite expertise in Finance and Consulting


I would say that over the course of the day two of my main concerns were addressed:


  • The 12 month program although highly condensed and arguably much more intense allows enough room to do other things (extra curriculars). Also, it does not have as great an impact when it comes to changing careers as is usually indicated by competitor schools. If one is interested in Finance/Management Consulting then the May intake is highly recommended since it coincides well with the traditional recruiting cycles in those industries.
  • Ivey does have an exceptional track record of consulting placements by Canadian standards and has done very well historically in Finance placements as well. However, the full impact of the 12 month program is not known on either placement statistics.


The question pertaining to what my significant other would do in London wasn’t addressed. However, I think that I will worry about that when the time comes.


So in summation I think I will certainly be applying to Ivey.


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Retake Scheduled

So I finally got around to scheduling my retake. September 6th it is – plenty of time left. However, it is summer time in Toronto, about the only nice time of the year in the city. I have plenty of distractions including family, social commitments, my parents leaving to go back to India, a move to a condo and some cricket related activities.

So time optimization will be key. Nonetheless, I look forward to the challenge and hope to improve my score by the desired level.

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