April, 2011

The Quest for the Golden Briefcase

Sunday, April 24th, 2011

UW Pride

UW Pride

C4C Sports Weekend: An amazing two days where nine business schools come together to celebrate the thousands of volunteer hours and massive amount of funds raised for charity. Not to mention trying to destroy each other in sports and activities like dodge ball, Ultimate Frisbee, and trivia. UW took an extremely close 2nd place this year; only two points away from owning the Golden Briefcase over USC! But no school can beat Foster in spirit. Our purple headbands could be seen everywhere, our men proudly sporting their mighty mustaches the occasional purple cape), and the women donning stylish gold tights. One USC student Facebooked me with, “I love you guys!!!” while a Stanford student said, “I love the U-Dub spirit.” Our great sportsmanship and fun-loving group makes me very proud to be part of Foster.

We are the only school outside of California and it was amazing how we managed to almost double our participation this year.  While being in the California sun after several months of clouds and drizzle is fantastic, there are a lot of other reasons why Sports Weekend is an event that can’t be missed. Stanford’s huge campus is the only one that can accommodate the 1400 people that attend the weekend, providing us with the beautiful Stanford Golf Course, sand volleyball courts, and even a stage for the spelling bee. Pool parties and meeting people from other business schools are always fun as well. I even ran into a few of my friends from undergrad!

I would say one of my favorite moments is the Battle of the Bands. We have the best band, hands down, and the Saturday night party rocks mostly because of us (no bias here). All-you-can-drink kegs both nights aren’t so bad either, but between Mike Warady’s drum solo and all the hottest girls dancing on stage during “Teenage Dream” (Foster girls of course), I kind of forgot about taking advantage of the free beer. Or maybe it’s because of the pre-game at the hotel pool earlier that day… Who cares? Battle of the Bands

This year, all the schools combined raised over $535,000 and volunteered almost 20,000 hours. I can’t explain how much I’ve enjoyed being part of C4C and Sports Weekend, giving back to the community in a fun, competitive way. Sports Weekend was a great trip to supplement my last quarter of business school. And I’ll never forget how one of our mustached studs wearing the cape tried to fly out of a palm tree Saturday night. Only U-Dub…

– Guest Blogger, Naureen Manekia, Full-Time Class of 2011

Foster Goes to Peru

Friday, April 1st, 2011

Looking down on Machu Picchu from the top of Wayna Picchu.

Looking down on Machu Picchu from the top of Wayna Picchu.


I just had one of the most amazing two weeks of my life. From sand boarding down giant dunes to paragliding over the Lima coast to late nights out clubbing, I experienced adventures that I can only hope to put words to when trying to share with those who weren’t there.

At our company visits and around the cities we visited, I got to see firsthand how different and how similar life in Peru can be. The things I learned listening to Peruvian economists, government officials, and business leaders speak to us as well as those learned exploring the cities where we stayed will be carried with me through my life.

Sunset in Cusco

Sunset in Cusco

I find myself with a new appreciation for those working hard to improve not only their own situation, but the situation of an entire nation. I also have found an appreciation for the choice between English and Spanish on the ATM machine. I understand that the business decisions we make every day in the US can ripple through the global economy to a single farmer of giant corn in the Sacred Valley, making the difference between whether he can sustain his way of life or not.

I also got to know a great group of people. Whether it was dancing our hearts out at a local traditional Peruvian dance and music show, killing time while the bus driver looked for the pieces that fell off the bus after an impromptu creek crossing in the Sacred Valley, climbing to the top of Wayna Picchu to look down upon the amazing construction of the Incan civilization, or sitting down to enjoy a few Cuzcanias, I became closer to some already good friends and got to know some new good friends. I realized that despite the many different choices of things to do on our trip, the ones that were the best were the ones we did together. I only hope that I can continue to build upon these great friendships no that our trip is over.

Traditional Dance

Traditional Dance


As such, coming home was bittersweet; I will miss the excitement, adventure, and fun of my trip. I was also looking forward to hugs and kisses from my wife and pooches. The trip home for many of us was challenging with all the flight complications caused by fuel system fires in Miami or computer system problems for Alaska Airlines. These challenges seem somewhat trivial compared to the challenges we were exposed to on our trip. I myself was stuck in Chicago for a night, but even that was not as bad as it sounds because I got to see my mother for a night. It’s not often that you get to come home twice on the same trip.

I would like to thank Alonso and Maria for planning such a fantastic trip. Thanks also to the group the came with because without each one of you, my experience would not have been as rich as it was. Lastly, thanks to my wife, Emily, for supporting my adventure and taking care of our home while I was away. Because of all of you, not only was I able to have the time of my life, but I get to take away memories and experiences that are now part of who I am, a slightly different person than I was when I started the trip.

– Guest Blogger, Mike Lumen, Evening MBA