So, I’m a second year now. I hate to use a cliché but, well, time flies. It has not only flown but its wings are now frantically flapping faster than ever before. I’m already into the second quarter of my second and final year and it’s time to give back a little. I’m originally from Europe where (for reasons I do not fully understand) students simply do not seem to develop the same die-hard loyalty to their alma mater as do American students. One of the many reasons that I decided to come to graduate school in the US was because of an intrigue as to how that loyalty is bred and cultivated. Its roots seem to be anchored in pride and passion. I now understand that that pride and passion is, in turn, nurtured through a tremendous strength of community within the school. As the Class of 2012 are by now well aware, the first year core curriculum (and, in particular, the first semester) is a rigorous, fast-paced programme. I was told that I’d likely have a lot more spare time in my second year now we’re into electives. Perhaps that might be true if I was capable of doing nothing for any length of time. Alas this is not the case – I am still far too energetic and excitable. Whether I’m working as a Teaching Assistant for first year core classes and for the International Experience trip to Japan with Professor Swersey, serving as a Second Year Advisor in the Leadership Development Programme and on Student Government, co-leading the Media & Entertainment Club, working with the admissions office to interview prospective students or DJing graduate megamixers, birthday and Halloween parties at the graduate bar and club, I’m finding myself busier than ever before. Being able to give back to an institution that has facilitated a life-changing year for me is a fantastic way to get right to the heart of what guides the uniquely tight sense of community at Yale SOM. I now understand what community means here and I can see myself leaving in a few short months’ time as one of those fiercely loyal members of the school’s alumni community whose warm reception towards me and my job search I will also be keen to replicate. In a broader sense, giving back to society – to our community – is part of what the school’s mission encourages in each of us. In turn, I’d recommend that everyone finds a way to play their part in doing so – in whatever form that might take – before this experience comes to its inevitably abrupt end.