Sep 2017 - May 2019
It all started Sunday night when about 40 of us gathered at the Ashmolean Museum to have dinner before starting our EMBA experience in earnest on Monday morning. Conversations started simple enough after cursory introductions. Where are you from? What do you do? By the time dessert arrived, however, we had moved past learning about spouses, kids, and pets to discussions about modern trends in the development of corporate mission statements, the development and implementation of corporate values, and the practical application of different leadership styles.
Monday morning I struggled to remember names from the evening before as we looked for our seats and met the remaining members of our cohort; altogether, sixty-three individuals with different backgrounds from all corners of the world. As lectures started, it didn’t take long for the different personalities of the students to emerge. We played a version of the “get to know you game” and then hit the ground running exploring leadership principles and styles. By the time dinner rolled around Tuesday night, my brain was tired, but it was clear I made the right decision coming to Oxford. The quality of lecturers ranges from very good to outstanding – exactly what you would expect at Oxford. The diversity of the cohort is amazing; the depth and breath of the experience they bring is phenomenal.
Thursday night we all gathered for matriculation as we officially became members of the University of Oxford. The ceremony was short but the internal impact of “arriving” at Oxford was real.
By the end of the week, several things were clear. I now have the opportunity to spend 15 weeks over the next 19 months with 62 brilliant, motivated, and creative people. The experiences we share will stretch us; we will be better as a result. We will learn a lot from our professors; we will learn more from each other. In the end, we will be challenged and empowered to change the world.
Last night we all said good-bye to our new friends. One rushed home to deal with crisis following the earthquakes in Mexico. Another returned to complete the integration of two workforces following a recent acquisition. Others returned to close deals and develop new business ideas. Despite our different roles and tasks away from Oxford, in just a few short weeks we will all return to share those experiences and learn more as members of the University of Oxford.Back to top of article