Posts Tagged ‘Entrepreneurship’

Not perfect, but trying…

This is something I’ve been meaning to write about for a couple of weeks.  Nothing is perfect and Darden, not surprisingly, is no exception…  Over the past year and a half almost there’ve been a few things that have bothered me and that I wished were different.  That is to be expected and as a student you are deceiving yourself if you think otherwise about any school.  I can’t speak about those other schools, but Darden is very good at listening, collecting and attempting to correct problems and complaints.  There is of course that long FY survey everyone completes in the spring of their first year, and the detailed analysis that is completed over the summer with the results distributed to the whole school, but there is more.  There is action.  I have two examples which affected me personally and which have been remedied.  

First, as an aspiring entrepreneur who came to Darden knowing that I wanted to start a company right after graduation I was disappointed last year that there was no specific entrepreneurship track.  At times I felt like I was being guided into a more traditional banking or consulting direction and that was frustrating.  I think there must have been a few of us who felt that way last year and some of my classmates worked with the administration and the CDC to create a career track just for us.  Not only that, but it was actually implemented this year, so the wonderful entrepreneurs of the Darden 2010 could take advantage of it right away!  I hope that they found it helpful.  

Second issue really reared its head for me this year.  Darden is very lucky to have a parking garage right next to the school, however we do have to pay for passes to park there.  Last year I drove to class pretty much every day and so the $600+ fee didn’t bother me so much.  This year, however, I’ve been carpooling with my fiance.  In Q1 he was able to drop me off every morning and so I never drove to class, but in Q2 my schedule allows us to carpool only half the week, which means that I must drive some days.  I’m also not going to be in Charlottesville much after Q3, so when I went to the department of transportation I asked for a temporary pass to last me just until the end of this semester.  Much to my dismay I was informed that I must buy one for the full year, or what’s left of it.  That was almost $500!  You can imagine my delight when I received an email from our DSA President that Darden has decided to make changes to parking rules.  Not only can I now buy a temporary permit, I can actually buy a booklet of 10 1-time use permits which encourages carpooling! That’s in addition to changing the time when you can park in the garage for free from 5PM to 3:30PM.  This change was in response to some afternoon shift workers start at 4PM and who’ve had to pay full price just to park in the garage for a hour.  Amazing!  Not only am I saving money but I also feel like I’m being rewarded and encouraged to do my part for the environment.  

It’s nice to know that while not perfect, Darden is listening and evolving to meet my needs and concerns.  

Career Options

FY is in full swing for the class of 2010.  I just came back from sitting on a panel during the Entrepreneurship Forum.  I know it’s just the beginning of the year and everyone hasn’t gotten sucked into attending recruiting events just yet, but I’m excited to say that it feels like there’s a good number of entrepreneurs in that class.  I hope they continue exploring it as a serious career option.  I know that I am very happy to be where I am today and I look forward to talking to first years about their ideas and business plans.

Personally, my calendar is already filling up with meeting requests and club fairs and all that good stuff that comes along with Darden.  Soon I’ll be checking my calendar reminders to tell me exactly where I need to be at any given time.  Until then though I’m off to the beach for a week.  See y’all in a few!

Entrepreneurship and gender stereotypes

“Studies reveal that in the dog-eat-dog, look-out-for-No. 1, highly competitive business world, only the aggressive, risk-taking alpha male can expect to succeed as an entrepreneur.”

Now, as this article states, the above is a commonly held stereotype and although personally, thanks to my parents I suppose, I’ve never felt that way myself, I do notice that a much smaller percentage of my female friends and acquaintances chose the entrepreneurial path than male.  Do you think that this is a generally accepted stereotype that is affecting the career choices of the two genders or are there some other factors?

Rainy days…

I really hate rainy days. All I want to do is sleep, sleep, sleep. I can’t believe that FY is going to be over in a month… It’s actually a little bit scary how quickly it flew by. I imagine that next year is going to go by even quicker, at least that’s the impression I get from current SY students.

Some good news on the Retail & Luxury Club! We got the go ahead on electing officers and starting our plans for next year. For all you prospective students out there, we are also going to have a table set up during the club fair at Darden Days 2008. Yay!

For all you female entrepreneurs out there check out the business plan competition below:

Go to to learn more

It’s never too cold for ice cream

I’m almost half way done with finals and procrastination abounds… Don’t ask me how I come across these things, but this is hilarious… Who Baby broomcomes up with this stuff?

So with FMP and GEM out of the way, it doesn’t seem like the rest of the week will be too bad. Tomorrow we have the STRAT final. I’ve just been reviewing the tech notes we were assigned during the quarter. I’m not sure what else to study really. I should probably just call it a day since tomorrow looks to be pretty busy. After the final I have a meeting to discuss the next steps of the Retail & Luxury Goods club. I’m hoping to get permission for an official distribution list and also figure out how to get a website going. I’d also love to be able to participate in the club fair at Darden Days. After that meeting it’s off to the Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital Club elections. A bunch of us are running together on a ticket. I’m aiming for VP of Entrepreneurship. I’m not sure how much opposition there will be for any of the positions as it seems that the candidate for President put together a ticket of pretty much every actively entrepreneurial or VC-oriented person in the first year class. The elections are being held at a bar though and we technically don’t have a final on Thursday (just a paper) so hopefully it will be fun.

On another note, I cannot wait for warm weather! Yesterday we had a really nice day - sunny, upper 60s, maybe even 70. It was a perfect afternoon to walk to the downtown mall to grab lunch. Baggby’s on E. Main street is one of my favorite sandwich places. It’s a bit on the expensive side in my opinion but the sandwiches are well worth it. Plus, you get a cute little chocolate chip cookie with every order!

Just down the street from Baggby’s is one of my favorite dessert places - Splendora’s Gelato Cafe. I am a HUGE fan of gelatos and sorbets, and often frequented Cones on Bleeker St. when I lived in New York City. And while Cones remains my favorite gelato joint, Splendora’s is a close second. Interesting fact - Splendora’s was started by a couple of Darden grads!


I can’t believe it’s been almost two months since my last post. Things got very hectic, very fast. I know I won’t be able to recall everything, but I will try to do a quick recap of what’s been going on.


  • Attended Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital Discovery Forum. Really enjoyed the entrepreneurship portion of it. Coming into Darden, I knew I wanted to start my own business, but attending this forum really confirmed it for me.
  • Went to my last large company briefing, 3M. Seems like an interesting place to work at, plus, we got some free post-its. Gotta love free stuff.
  • Darden provides the opportunity to listen to many speakers, including alums, business leaders, even politicians. Bryan Simms gave a great speech on failures and mistakes. Read more about it here.
  • Darden Cares 5K was a success, with over 400 participants, we raised over $7,000 for Juvenile Diabetes. I was checking people in and it was a little crazy because of so many race day registrants. Remember to register ahead of time next year! The best part was seeing all the Darden students who participated in the “Best Business Attire” contest. Can you run 3.1 miles in full business suit?
  • The month ended with the beginning of two case competitions. I was team captain for the NAWMBA case competition, as well as the Innovation Challenge. It was the inaugural year for the NAWMBA competition and unfortunately my team didn’t make it to the finals. The IC was a lot of fun, and I think my team had a really great idea. We ended up 27th out of 287 teams from all over the world. Not too bad, for our first try.
  • Mohop shoes August 24, 2008
    This is a really neat concept of using one wood and rubber shoe base and an innovative patent-pending straping system to “create” a virtually unlimited number of sandals.  In fact, the mohop website states that their shoe has been dubbed the “infinity sandal.”  Aside from potentially saving the custumer money by eliminating the need to [...]