Got your attention, didn’t I?
Since the creation of this here Blog, many people have asked me what it is that I generally dislike about ESADE. While overall I am satisfied with the choice of school, the location, the people and education there are a few things that I can share with you the wider community, that I personally think can be improved upon. Now, mind you this is only the opinion of one student, and what I think others may not.
So where to start? Well first off, when we as in the now 2nd years arrived at ESADE, the food in the carpa (cafeteria) could have been better, it’s been improving, but eating bocadillos every day for breakfast can get a bit daunting. So if you’re looking at schools based on food quality, I say go to a culinary academy. Luckily however you can eat around ESADE, and for about 5.25€ can get a pretty decent meal.
But what about education? This one is a bit of a WYSWYG, basically there are a handful of classes that really test your mettle, and I mean really pummel you with work, so much so that you pass off assignments that you can finish others. Luckily with groups, and team work and all that, mostly everything gets done. Then there are some other classes that were a walk in the park for me, these was Corporate Finance, Marketing I, and Org. Behavior. But then again, I have a degree from Tulane in Finance, I took marketing before, as well as O.B., and tend to excel in the more soft skill areas in general. O.B. was very heavily rooted in Philosophy for example, where you needed to understand and apply the fundamental concept, instead of a you go with options c, d, e in case of a. But people do fail (not me luckily) and have had to retake certain courses (i.e. OB, and although some in my year will disagree with me, I thought it to be a brilliant and vital class to any manager).
Then are the readings, let’s say there’s a sufficient amount of them, if you chose to read everything that every prof. gives you, good luck having any type of social life, it’s all about time, team and people management. Not to use a cliché, but a work-life balance.
And then there are classes that I understand the need for, but absolutely hated. Namely, Intl. Taxation, and Law. To me, Mandarin Chinese is easier to grasp than law, and taxation as you can imagine is about as much fun as applying self acupuncture, but in the global workplace (another tired cliché), it’s necessary, and will probably come in handy when us MBA grads have to deal with source companies and tax brackets, bills, and transfers.
And finally, language, not the learning of but the understanding of the accent . For some people, especially those who grew up mono-lingual, and have not had ample experience with accents, some professors were difficult to understand. I have personally never had this problem, but I know people who have, and there’s also those individuals that have problems understanding native English speakers, they say some of them speak under their noses or mumble. Basicallyt, his is what happens when you study with people from 29 different nationalities.
What else… career services. It depends who you deal with inside the office, and generally they are doing a good job, the list of companies coming this October to ESADE are more than impressive, and even better than last years. If you want advice, and if you want help planning your career, it’s there, and opportunities are there. Lastly however, over the summer, the school’s installed some sort of glass rooms on Planta A, which in my most humble opinion are an audacity. Planta A was a sort of common area for us, it’s by the exit to the carpa, and they could have put those things on B, which tends to be dead ½ the time. But then again, what do I know.
Social life. As they say in Barcelona, la vida social en ESADE es súper chulo. For real, it’s great, but the school never, other than orientation, explicitly mixed the Spanish and English sections, we did that ourselves, and there really isn’t much intermingling between the MBA and the Masters of “enter field here” programs that the school also caters to. I think this is a mistake, as those people could also be a future network. But the argument for creating a tight knit network of MBAs also has its arguments.
So what is there to say in the end. It’s what you make out of it. For me, it’s building life relationships with intelligent ambitious and driven people, knowing that in the future they will be able to count on me and I on them, it’s getting a good if not for me an overly demanding education, but then, I never read all, or most of the supplementary material. Am I happy? I think I’ve said on multiple occasions I am. Can EASDE be better? I think it can. But it is the goal of any person or institution, to better itself, for itself and its/their respective stakeholders.
And as I’ve said before, I would have hated Columbia. The small number of students at EASDE really makes this MBA a personal experience, unparalleled in my eyes with any other, but they really could get around to having better food for breakfast.