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The Trendy Elite B-Schools

Basil Enwegbara

As we now settle down, those who know B-Schools (business schools) well know how they all are about hard work and sleepless nights. From one course to another, and from one conference to another, you are in constant move. Being at an elite B-School like Sloan is a dream come true. It’s all about the making the doors to the corporate world wide open. All you need do is pass through them. “Remember, we are all smart guys; everyone is very smart and very future-oriented.” So, we can’t be seen as empty dreamers at all. Learn to be in, in your own interest as well as in the group interest.

As future corporate chiefs, we are supposed to be already in a hurry, getting out of here and joining them there. Our nostalgia is understandable indeed. Remember, the newcomers are adapting and learning our codes of conduct as fast as they can. Let them become community integrated. As children, we all learn from our parents; the new Sloanies are quickly learning from us. After all, it’s all part of going to an elite B-School. A world well defined by us: the world of cell phones, ringing continuously in the classroom; laptops always screening and monitoring markets around the globe; and The Wall Street Journal and The Financial Times always handy. Champions must always have the latest BMWs and Lexuses in the parking lot.

How the market is performing is a frequently asked question. What about high-techs, derivatives, bonds, hedging? They too are familiar words, frequently mentioned in conversations. As it is here, so it is there from Sloan to Harvard B-School to Wharton and to Stanford. You can’t afford not to fit in. Never avoid dinners or cocktails. Never avoid weekend parties. They are all part of it. Otherwise, why are you here in the first place? Remember, by not doing so, you risk classmates avoiding you or even outright disowning you.

Now that we’ve arrived, we wait to see the present economic downturn changed. Boy, who can afford to wait? How can lifestyles be maintained? I have got mortgages to pay and loan obligations to meet after graduation. Should the present situation continue, how can we raise funds from those arch venture capitalists? Raising our “seed money” for our startup company from the “Socrates?” What about angel funds? Will that become the alternative? Or is the present financial crunch only temporary as we hope to raise three million dollars equity?

Can the corporate world say that it can do without the B-School graduates, the fixers of business problems? The world is as we define it. Perception is reality. We’re an indispensable class of professionals, aren’t we? As long as capitalism is the system, the world out there knows that ours is the dominant profession and we’re not going to be threatened. Champions will always lead.

If you think that we are trendy, then why not try students at other elite B-Schools, like try Harvard B-School, Stanford, or Wharton? That’s the reality of this world, that’s the reality everywhere. It’s the trend well reaffirmed in any elite B-School you visit, where future corporate emperors are trained. We are going to be the Gateses, the Dells, the Soros, and the Chambers of tomorrow’s corporate capitalism. These are the elite B-Schools realities you can’t avoid.