I’ve always considered myself technologically savvy. I was the family member who would set up the new CD player. I knew how to adjust the tracking on the VCR when the image was unclear. And, hey, I worked at an Internet incubator in California during the peak of the dot-com economy. Why wouldn’t I be prepared for HBS’s commitment to “really” using technology?
So far, I have been immensely humbled. The first major stumbling block in my technological preparation occurred just two days before orientation when I decided to “just make sure” my IBM ThinkPad was up to snuff. With a little outside assistance, I read through the requirements and realized that my three-year old laptop was markedly inadequate for the rigors of the MBA program. How much RAM did they want? What speed again? Really? After a few emergency phone calls on Sunday afternoon to several computer stores in New York (and not a few panic attacks), I finally located a new laptop that could be all set to go by the next afternoon. Victory!
The next hurdle was installing my new wireless card. Well, okay, watching my boyfriend install it. Setup disks, a trip to Spangler to test it out, a lovely conversation with tech support, and we were ready to go. Success # 2! Then came configuring the CD-writable drive, which will surely be used for some stellar music mixes, finding a mouse adapter, and getting an Ethernet cord. Best Buy, the Coop, RadioShack, and OfficeMax became my new stomping grounds.
But it was all worth it. I have been unbelievably impressed and delighted by the way HBS is leveraging today’s technology to welcome us to school. Getting my schedule and assignments online, clicking on my classmates’ links to learn all about them, and even having the Boston weather on my own HBS homepage have been fantastic. I particularly enjoyed the tips for stress management in the classroom and some of the words of wisdom for keeping some balance and perspective in our soon-to-be hectic lives. The monitors throughout Spangler and Aldrich displaying our upcoming activities were quite useful, especially when trying to find my way to the computing session, bleary-eyed and headache-ridden after the boat cruise. Even the Baker Library resources blew me away.
Although my confidence in my innate technological ability has been tested, I am certain that all the prep-time was well spent. I’ve never been so excited to make use of a laptop and I’m looking forward to the technological treats that HBS has in store. In the meantime, if anyone needs directions to a computer store, just let me know.