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A full ampitheatre classroom environmentThe time of truth is here for the newest cohort of Telfer Executive MBA candidates, they’re going back to class!

When asked if they are nervous about heading into their first days of the Fall semester, you’ll likely be surprised to hear their responses following an intense two-day orientation which took place this past weekend,

Although many were tired at the end of the two days, the candidates in the Class of 2015 cohort had plenty of energizing comments and positive insights on the transformational experience ahead of them: 

"I am happy to have met my team and the rest of the class and really excited about the learning opportunity. The professors are engaging and present the topics very well.

"Exhilarating! I feel I am surrounded by people who will inspire and challenge me to do my best"

"I feel such a sense of belonging and that I am exactly where I am supposed to be. Just the intimacy alone that was built up [over the last two days], I am really enjoying it."

"Be ready for the experience of your life- learning starts on day 1-  fun and energy are here"

"[The  group exercise] we experienced yesterday I can take to work on with me this Thursday with my brand new team at work. My colleague asked what we can do for team building? I said add this to the agenda."

The Engaging Experience:

The Centre for Executive Leadership was anything but short of laughter and stories throughout the two days. With stories of awkward encounters with squirrels to the creation of their nicknames along with additional sidesplitting anecdotes about their lives, the opportunity provided by Director Sophia Leong early Friday morning to introduce themselves, provided the optimal time to create a first and lasting impression as well as a direct line into each of their personalities.  The rich collection of stories and anecdotes created an energetic and intimate start to Orientation.

The Team Experience:

Orientation is a time for self-reflection as well as understanding how one's personal preferences and learning styles will contribute to the teams' performance. In the forming stage of their new Telfer Executive MBA teams, candidates participated in serious discussions about significant experiences that have shaped each, their individual learning preferences as well as to identify and to examine how their personality preferences will affect the diversity within the team environments throughout their Executive MBA experience. Throughout the next four months, teams will also be immersed into  exercises and discussions in understanding the four stages of building high performance teams as respective team experiences the effects in real-time: storming, norming and forming.

The Practical Experience:

Over the course of the summer, candidates have had the advantage of gaining valuable insights from alumni, professors as well as staff on advice for preparing for the 21 month experience:

  1. In addition to the new skill-sets you will learn, you will systematically gain the skill of time management, which is critical to the success in the program!
  2. Learn to say "No" and prepare those closest to you to expect your participation in social events to lessened over the Program, but it is only for 21 months
  3. Open your mind to new experiences and perspectives, maximize and leverage the safe learning environment.
  4. Include your family in your education, make time for them over the 21 months, invite your children to complete homework with you, get excited on your achievements- you are an excellent role model for furthering their education. 
  5. Be prepared to work. You are contributing to a team and a class. Be prepared to also have fun as well.
  6. Learn to ask for help when the team or you are moving into murky waters.  The Executive MBA team, professors and the rest of your peers of Class 2015 are valuable resources and assets to your success in the program.

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