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The Bitter-Sweetness of Practicum Week

Initially, I wasn’t too crazy about the idea of attending a week-long Practicum. It meant using precious Vacation Days to attend school. The mere idea seemed contradictory. Nevertheless, I woke up Monday morning and committed to arriving at the Hilton Orrington Hotel with a positive attitude.
Each day of the Practicum Week was invigorating. All the professors who spoke were entertaining, challenging and stimulated my brain to think critically about different topics such as Crisis Management, Organizational Behavior and Business Ethics.
Through various group activities, my classmates and I were able to mix and mingle with each other. We introduced ourselves to classmates outside our elective courses that we had not met yet. We garnered greater respect and empathy for one another as we shared about challenging life experiences. We enjoyed partaking in meals together and shopping with one another for Christmas gifts at the local Northwestern Gear Store on Sherman Ave. Strangers became Acquaintances and Acquaintances became Friends.
After I had completed the four required Practicums on Thursday, It was time for me to return to work on Friday. However, I woke up Friday morning a little depressed. Instead of going to the daily Practicum to learn about a new topic, I had to go to work and start responding to the hundreds of emails in my inbox. I found myself deeply missing the opportunity to learn as well as socializing with my classmates.
This Practicum Week was one of the best experiences I’ve had so far in the MSC Program. It was like I was back in high school: going to class in the morning, having lunch with friends, class in the afternoon, and hanging out with friends after school. I wish this week did not have to end. It reminded me how much I missed the structure of school and valued the wisdom of my college professors.
Once I wrapped up my day at work, I raced over to the MSC Holiday Party Friday evening to see my classmates and friends. Walking into the party felt like walking into a family reunion. I felt instantly welcomed and at home after being re-united with my classmates and Alumni of the MSC Program.
As sappy as this may sound, when you are a member of the MSC Program, your classmates aren’t your competitors, they’re you’re family. You support each other through the rigorous class assignments and Saturday courses. You learn about each other’s activities, experiences, and trials. You offer advice, wisdom, and comfort to one another. Seeing the Alumni’s euphoric reaction to one another is further evidence that the relationships we’re forming will last well after we graduate.
It pains me that I don’t have another Saturday class until the New Year. Even though a break is needed, I will definitely be looking forward to seeing everyone again on January 9th.