Transitions

April 17, 2011

Things are constantly in motion at Yale SOM, but the past few weeks have been exceptionally marked by change. (See three sets of changes highlighted below the jump.)

Current student transitions.The Class of 2011 has been preparing to pass on the torch. In the Hall of Mirrors, they have increased the flow of advice about choosing electives, serving as TAs and research assistants, and working with various departments at SOM and the wider university.Prime apartments are being passed on through informal channels to ensure that our best residential spaces stay in the SOM family.More formally, our Student and Academic Services team has been facilitating leadership transitions of SOM’s 50+ student clubs.The incoming student leaders are already developing plans for next year.(And, as the new Clubs & Finance Committee Chair, I’ll have a sneak peek at all of them!)

Admitted student welcome.Over the past few days we were visited by ~150 admitted students (“admits”) to the Class of 2013.They heard from Professor Robert Shiller and leaders of various SOM departments.They heard from current students about academics, career development, and social lives.And of course they had fun – with receptions at the Peabody Museum and Professor Heidi Brooks’ house, a massive party at GPSCY (the graduate student pub), a scavenger hunt that took them around Yale University, a pig roast, etc.Many of the admits had already decided that they were coming; others were pleased how, in addition to the “hard sell” they expected, they were able to receive objective observations and advice from current students.The choice between business schools is a deeply personal one, and it’s more important to us that we help admits make the best choice for them rather than sell Yale SOM automatically and universally.(That said, I ultimately came to the conclusion that Yale SOM would be the best choice for most of the admits I spoke with!) SOM leadership transition.  Edward A. Snyer, the designated successor of our beloved current dean Sharon Oster, met with various constituencies as he prepared for his official start on July 1 later this year.I attended three sessions with him – a one-hour talk and Q&A with current students, an address to admits, and a small group discussion with officers of our student government.I’ll refrain from leaking elements of his still-forming plans, but I was pleased to hear him acknowledge strongly how supportive Dean Oster has been in bringing him up to speed, and struck by his combination of vision, focus, candor, and humility.I’m excited to not just watch SOM’s trajectory but to play a part in shaping and supporting it.

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Eddie Thai