My life, my blog, and B-school somewhere inbetween

A catalog of one reapplicant's journey towards an MBA in 2008

Saturday, April 08, 2006

DAK- The Long Version

Ok, a week has past since DAK. The grieving process is nearly over and I think I'm ready to talk about it. I've come to terms with the whole situation and am willing to accept it. DAK is over. I have to go back to my ordinary life until August. Sigh.

DAK was awesome. From start to finish, I had nothing but a good time. Met some really cool people, got all my questions on Kellogg answered, and even took care of housing for the next two years! Here's a not so brief rundown of events-


Arrive around 2:30pm. Call one of the Evanston cabbies for a flat rate lift from the airport to Evanston. Once we cross the border into Evanston, his meter mysteriously turns on. I'm like, "WTF?" He says something in broken english about this being "his business", to which I reply, "it's a flat rate, $28 is all I'm paying." About five minutes later he pushes a button and the meter turns off. When he drops me off, he says something like, "The meter went on by accident. It must have gone on when I was calling in about another fare. You understand, right?" Yeah, I understood you tried to rip me off, dipshit. But I digress. I had just arrived at the lovely McManus house, Kellogg's dorm. I was staying with a student host, but I had no idea it was at the dorm. I call my host to let him know I'm there and to let me in, but he doesn't pick up. Uh oh. Combined with the cab incident, this is not the way I wanted the weekend to start out.

Eventually I get in touch with him, blah, blah, shows me around, etc. He says something like, "People always talk shit about McManus being a dorm, but it's really not. It's an apartment building." Yeah... it's a dorm. My dorm in undergrad had a living (common) room with a kitchen and a bedroom or two attached to it. That's all McManus was. When the chairs are those ones with the red or blue fabric and the wooden arms that go all the way around to connect to the legs, it's a dorm. So, I knew I was definitely not going to live in McManus.

After the meet and greet with the host, met a bunch of 2nd years who were making their soon to be vacated apartments available for showing. Saw three of them, then met my college buddy in Wicker Park for dinner and drinks. Good times. Got back around midnight and learned that I should budget 45-60 minutes if I want to take the purple line to downtown, door-to-door.


Got up in time to get the last scraps of breakfast at DAK. Followed my "section" into the auditorium for the obligatory 1 hour welcome. Not bad. The director of admissions got up and read little one-line snippets from around 40-50 applicants' essays to tell us about "who are classmates are." I was a bit surprised when I heard a line that sounded vaguely familiar... After all that, went to an icebreaker thing with our section where we had to learn about four people sitting next to us. Whatever. Typical b-school crap. Anyway, it was good to at least meet a bunch of people and hear about the different types of backgrounds we had. After this, we had some more auditorium shit. Topic: Academics. I didn't care. Instead, I ditched to go meet up with this guy my buddy at the GSB knew from his summer associate class at XYZ bank and talk to him about Sales and Trading recruiting at Kellogg. As you all know, Kellogg is not known for its finance program the way Chicago or Wharton are. So, recruiting was obviously a concern for me. If I wanted to be an I-banker, I knew it would be fine. Kellogg has plenty of that. But S&T is another story. I had heard mixed things, so I wanted to hear it from someone who actually went through it. Long story short, he dismissed all my concerns and, as an added bonus, basically told me that with my background I would easily stand out amongst everyone else. After I told my buddy at the GSB all the details, he was like "Dude, go there." So, it was around that moment I for the most part decided to go to Kellogg. But I was cautious enough to hold off until after I saw some of the partying I had heard so much about.

Next had a lunch with professors talking about a specific track- finance, consulting, marketing, etc. and the relevant coursework and academics. Then we had the next section teambuilding exercise where we split up and built towers out of spaghetti sticks and marshmallows. Much harder than you'd think. I learned that my team worked better when there was no clear leadership and delegation of roles. The first time around we all had a general idea of what we were trying to do and so people just did the parts they saw needed work. The second time when we delegated, things were not as smooth and more chaotic. Atypical b-school lesson. I realized that the people involved needed to be fairly smart in order for the first method to work under such time pressure, so at least I felt more confident about my future classmates. Then we had a mini-class, which was about 1 hr with two professors doing an example of what a class at Kellogg is like. Probably had their best profs out for this part, and it showed. Classes were fun and interesting (I know, crazy right?). Then I ditched the next thing to take a nap. Breakfast was early and I went to bed late. Redwolf does not function well without sleep. Got about 30 min of rest in, and went down to "TG". TG is Kellogg's Friday drinkfest in the main building. Lasts about an hour or two, they have kegs and some good bottled beer, and it's free! GSB has something similar called "Liquidity Preference". I'm sure all the b-schools do. They also had the KWEST fair then, so I got to learn about the different weeklong trips incoming Kellogg students can go on the week before they start. There are some really cool destinations. Talked to some people I knew from NY, then went with a new section to have dinner at a local Evanston restaurant. We went to one of the bars. Food... not so good. But, it had the advantage of being the bar where everyone was going to meet up later. I had a great time at dinner, talked a lot with one of the "JVs" (significant others of Kellogg students), and got the lowdown from her and this 1st year chick on the dating seen and my chances. Good stuff ;-). After dinner we mosied on over to the bar area and I found myself sitting at a table with two 1st year guys. In the span of the next 20 minutes, five hot 1st year girls came over. Yes five girls at random (more or less), and I do mean hot (as a single guy this is very important ladies; apologies if I sound crass). I was impressed. At that point I was really convinced I'd be going to Kellogg :-).


Decided that after the previous night I would skip whatever was planned for the morning. Got up around 11am, made it just in time for lunch with students talking about recruiting. Basically heard the same stuff as the guy I talked with Friday said, so I felt even more confident. It was good to hear it from a 1st year as well. I heard that the first DAK didn't do such a good job on this front so I extra scrutinous. Then we got corralled again into the auditorium for the alumni discussion panel. Noticed there were a lot less people than on Friday. I kind of snoozed through this panel, and then left to make some phone calls about an apartment and came back in time for the next presentation on the "Kellogg Experience". It basically just talked about some of the clubs and unique things like GIM. Honestly, I don't remember all that much about it because I kept leaving to call the guy about the apartment. There were some issues with someone else who had signed a lease, but then was thinking about backing out, etc., so a bunch of calls needed to be made. By the time I was done with that the presentations were over and it was now time to go to the club fair. Got to speak with the reps from all the clubs on campus, figured out which I was likely to join, and shortly thereafter went back to McManus with an hour to spare before the closing dinner and night out.

Closing dinner was at the Museum of Science and Industry. It was fairly nice. Food was ok, drinks were not free. Then we got on a bus to go to Zellas, a club/lounge downtown. The bus driver decided to take the most ridiculously long way I've ever seen to get there, going west then east then west then east, so while we were amongst the first to leave I think we were amongst the last to arrive. Anyway, Zellas was a good time. I met up with another buddy from the GSB who was hanging out with his Kellogg friends he knew from undergrad, threw back a bunch of shots, had an awesome time, found myself calling it a night around 1:30am. But, I desperately needed food so I went to Dunkin Donuts and therefore missed the bus. Buses left every 30 min, so no biggy. Went back inside, 2:10am rolled around and no announcement had come about the 2:00am bus. I figured it was safer to just get on the bus then since 2:30am was the last bus back. A few people got on the bus, but 2:30am came and went with no announcement, leaving many many behind. Oh well, sucks for them.

Again, I had a retarded bus driver so it was 4:30am when we got back (with the time change that night). Checked my email because I had to fill out an application for the apartment and email it back to the landlord so we could have a lease ready by Sunday. In the email he said "we should meet at 11am". It was 5am. I was piss drunk. Fuck me.


Somehow I woke up at 11am. No alarm, just instinct (if you knew Redwolf you'd be really surprised about this). I felt pretty ill, but got myself together and talked to the guy and said we'd meet at noon. Went to get some breakfast, saw some really attractive undergrads, went to my new home, signed a lease, and knew at that moment I was definitely going to Kellogg ;-). Went to the airport, got on a standby flight home before the big storm really hit, and made it home by 7pm. It was a great way to end a really great weekend.


As you all know, I am going to Kellogg in the fall. DAK sold me. People kept asking me during DAK if I had "drank the koolaid". Um... no? While I am sold on Kellogg, I don't think I'm going to end up being one of these "Rah Rah" Kellogg types. And while I think Kellogg is going to be awesome, I don't think it's going to be quite like an acid trip. Instead, how about we just say, "I'm on the bus."

Oh, and a special thanks to Clear Admit for the nomination. Much appreciated.


  • At April 11, 2006 6:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Since you made some sense in your last paragraph, I will NOT say "Have fun at your cult." It's always important to think for yourself.

    And for what down to earth people (and you made note of this) think of the spaghetti sticks and marshmallows read "Year One" by Robert Reid. I'm paraphrasing here, but once the protagonist learns that he has to do something like that at HBS, he says "I'm tired of this Northwestern crap." I thought that was pretty funny.

  • At April 12, 2006 9:50 AM, Blogger laserlikefocus said…

    Congrats for making your decision. The class I sat in on during my campus visit was also loads of fun. I guess things are fun till they get routine. Hell, the first time I had lunch at my dorm in India I thought the food was good :)


Post a Comment

<< Home