Elmira Khusainova

Before I started my MBA journey many people were telling me that INSEAD life is intense and that I will have no other options, but learn to prioritise and say “no” to certain events, travels and parties, because it is just too much to combine with academics, career research and sleep.

Every time my reaction was basically the same: “yeah, sure”. Indeed it is a top business school and the programme is demanding, but my life is not like I am chilling and watching Netflix all the time: somehow I manage to combine a demanding job, life in huge dynamic city, relationships, side-education, hobbies, sport, travel etc. It seemed to me that either people were exaggerating or trying to frighten me for whatever reason.

Probably the most famous Singapore skyline

Well, after being two months in Singapore, I can say only: oh my, how wrong I was!

I have a theory that as soon as you set your foot on INSEAD campus you find yourself in a peculiar time-space curvature.

Sometimes the space tightens down to the campus itself and in an instant, you find yourself in a different city, thanks to Changi airport and Singapore student pass for most efficient travels ever. Most popular destinations so far have been Ho Chi Minh, Kuala-Lumpur, Hong Kong, Dubai, Taipei, Siem Reap and Thailand.

Sometimes time seems to be a joke: you close your eyes and voilà it is already one day later, one week later, one month later. Back then in my past I remember days that felt endless, meetings that took an eternity and felt torturous, the only thing I wanted was to move time forward. Here it feels like somebody put the time x2.5 and your mind is at its best x1.0 speed.

Our last P1 exam ended just one week ago and we are already fully immersed into P2 and search for summer internships. I think it is important to keep in mind what each one of us seeks from this INSEAD experience, embrace it’s intensity, uncertainty and rollercoaster nature and just enjoy the ride surrounded by amazing people!