I had my first interactions with the incoming first years on Friday when I volunteered to help out with the Tepper Cares days.
The Tepper Cares day is an event that is part of BaseCamp where the class goes out and helps in the community. This year, due to the rather underwhelming experience from last year with our group, the decision was made to organise the event in-house instead of outsource to Pittsburgh Cares. I helped, a little, with the organization of the day - a good friend of mine did his pro-bono consulting project with the Pittsburgh Botanical Gardens, and he suggested we go with them to help clear the land. They were very enthusiastic and excited to have the whole class coming.
I would say maybe 2/3 of the class of 2014 attended - not too bad of a turnout. Clearly there was a little bit of exhaustion from the previous weeks of BaseCamp, and an excitement that barely bubbled under the surface to actually start classes.
I had been lurking on the class of 2014 Facebook group, reading the exuberant postings and enthusiastic event organization, smiling in remembrance of how we were as a class this time last year. Oh, the activities planned! The announcements made! The postings created of various non-essential things that we wanted to share with our classmates! How much difference a year make.
I made constant self-deprecating comments that I'm a wise, cynical 2nd year now. In some ways it's true. It feels a little odd to not be the center of attention. What do I mean? In my first year, all the opportunities seem to be aimed directly at us - case competitions, networking events, club events, etc. Loads of advice is out there aimed directly for us. My entire life, for the first two minis, seemed to revolve entirely around school - I had no free time. Now, I watch as others get excited about the case competitions. I chuckle inside when I hear the first years talk enthusiastically about what they're going to do on the weekends (instead of schoolwork). I actually found myself merely browsing through the listing of corporate presentations instead of signing up ravenously for each and every one that had a possibility of being interesting.
I look forward to this year being a lot less hectic and crazy than last. My recruiting efforts will be non-existent for a long time, since the video game/tech industry tend to wait until last minute to recruit - which includes Blizzard. I've also got the luxury of waiting until the "perfect" opening comes up - as opposed to last year when any internship would've been great. My courseload is a lot lighter, especially this mini as I have only 4 courses. I don't have crazy all-weekend bootcamps for consulting club, or networking efforts every day, or countless resume reviews.
I actually plan on having a life with extra curricular activities :) Yay for second year!