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Starting B-School This Week? Don’t Do These 3 Things, Says Vault

Whether you’re heading off to business school right now, or have dreams of doing so next year, it’s always a good idea to file away advice to help you navigate the experience successfully. No one wants to get saddled with a bad reputation upon getting your foot in the door, especially when the contacts and connections made in B-school will likely carry through your entire career.

With that in mind, we'd like to share Madison Priest's top three ways to avoid ruining your business school reputation in the first week, posted yesterday on Vault's MBA blog.

  • Don't be too, too, too anything. If you get hammered your second night, you'll always be known as the drunk-even as an alum. Don't get stoned, because then you'll always be known as the stoner. Even on the more legal side of things, if you're too friendly, gregarious, arrogant, etc.-even if it's just first day jitters-that adjective will stick for a loooong time.
  • Don't be the first student-student couple. Everyone talks about the first class couple. A lot. This phenomenon is further amplified if everyone lives together on a residential campus like at Harvard Business School. That's not to say you can't ask that handsome (or pretty) new stranger out on a date or two. What it does mean, however, is that you should probably wait until someone else takes the plunge; and even then, be discreet.
  • Don't mouth off to anyone, at least not yet. Does "free square in a*hole Bingo" mean anything to you? If not, this is the quickest way to learn. Whether it's the cashier at the dining hall or the soon-to-be student body president, you never want to be "that guy." Because you would be. Forever.

Not too difficult, right? For more practical advice on navigating these socially hazardous waters, read Bloomberg BusinessWeek's recent piece, B-School, Day One: A Primer.

About the author: Stacy Blackman
Stacy Blackman

Stacy Blackman, has been consulting on the Master of Business Administration degree application process since 2001. She has an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a BS from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Stacy has worked with the admissions committees at both schools, conducting alumni interviews and evaluating applicants.


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