Jan 2019 - Sept 2020
Today I was inducted into Kellogg College at Oxford University. It was a marvelous experience and I’d like to share with you why.
For folks who are not natives of the UK, you may ask: “Aren’t you a student of Saïd Business School at Oxford University? Why are you being inducted into a college whose name reminds me of cereals?” You are forgiven for your ignorance.
After I was accepted to SBS, I was puzzled as well when I got an email asking me to apply for one of the 38 colleges in Oxford. My first thought was that it’s typical British pomp and circumstance that is entirely unnecessary but certainly makes me feel important.
I applied to a very historic college that has hundreds of years of history, many luminaries and impeccable grass lawns. Let just say that I ended up with the much younger Kellogg College whose grass lawns are more amenable to walking on.
During my first visit today, the college administrators who received us couldn’t stop boasting about the food in the college cafeteria. My suspicion grew: what else can you offer other than the freedom to walk on lawns and better catering? Do you have a gothic spire? No. Do you have an alumnus who is or was the Prime Minister of the UK? No. Do you have a coffer that rivals that of the royal family? No.
As we went through the process of induction and our hosts peeled through the layers of Kellogg College, I began to see some advantages of Kellogg.
Unlike more historic colleges who can’t be bothered, It has social events every night of the week: Yoga on Monday, Mixer on Tuesday, Formal Dinner on Wednesday, Women’s Social (that is open to men) on Thursday, and something cool on Friday, that I’ve forgotten.
I can have a private sit-down with the college president, who happens to be an economist. I can give a talk on a subject of my expertise and the college will publicize it to the entire university.
By the end of the visit, I had come to appreciate that every student at Oxford University receives dual support, one from their academic department, in my case, Saïd Business School, the other from their college. I even have an academic advisor at Kellogg College! I will certainly spend the majority of my time in SBS, but you can bet I will leverage my college to expand my horizons and enrich my Oxford experiences!
A final reminder for future SBS students who want to get into a historic college like Christ Church – they operate basically on a first-come, first-serve basis – apply early and if accepted, pay your deposit as soon as possible.
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