Is Y2 > Y1?

October 5, 2011

One of the enduring myths at SOM is that the second year of business school is much easier than first year. The legend goes: Year 1, Fall 1 is impossibly tough, Year 1, Fall 2 is even harder still, then Spring 1 & Spring 2 are much easier. By the time you get to second year, you're finally ready to experience b-school to the fullest! But is it the myth really true? So far, for me at least, it's been a mixed bag. Now that I'm in my second year, I can see a huge difference in my stress level from Year 1 to Year 2. But easier? Less busy? Not even close. Iā€™m taking 5 classes, recruiting, working part-time for the Yale Sustainability Office and for SOM Sustainability, Career Coaching, and on the Executive Committee of 2012 Yale Healthcare Conference Co-Chairing the Marketing Committee. Plus don't forget trying to complete that elusive "New Haven Bucket List." I have yet to experience that care-free second-year existence I had imagined. Probably the biggest difference between Year 1 and Year 2 is the ability to cope better. Yeah, the future is a blank canvas, and it's scary, but we've done this before (albeit with a blank "summer internship" canvas). With the passing of Steve Jobs today, I'm reminded of the Commencement address he delivered at Stanford in 2005: "You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something ā€” your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life." Key takeaway for first years heading into the first round of final exams: somewhere along the way, you just figure it out.

"Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma ā€” which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary." - Steve Jobs, June 12, 2005

About the author

Erin Solano