Reminiscences from a bicycle trip through the forest of Fontainebleau
With the end of the valuation exam, we approached the end of P1. I am now taking a break in Prague, thoughtfully, calmly, and hopefully. Overall, P1 life was fast and intensive, and I have three specific reflections: Firstly, academic intelligence. Although INSEAD is known as a school where students like to have fun, they demonstrate high levels of academic intelligence thanks to the standards and requirements of the courses.
After a two-month summer break, I was so happy to restart the MBA and reunite with my INSEAD family once again. For the fourth period of the programme (which we call P4), I went on a campus exchange to Fontainebleau. It was nice to be in Europe, and to experience some true French ways of living - especially in the cozy small town of Fonty.
At the end of August, I had the opportunity to attend an elective in Silicon Valley, as part of my MBA. INSEAD has been a wonderful opportunity to step outside of my comfort zone and explore different career paths, and I signed up for the Building Business in Silicon Valley (BBSV) trek to do just that: explore the epicentre of tech startups, and what makes it so unique and successful.
It was two weeks into the 10-month INSEAD MBA programme. Six strangers were dining pasta on a weekday. What we didn't know however, is that this was an evening that would change our lives forever.
It is incredible how much has happened this year. As a recent grad and someone who is joining the labour force again, I wanted to share some reflections while answering the most popular question: why did I decide to do an MBA? Let’s summarise it into three reasons:
I spent my summer in Nairobi, Kenya, interning at ALX, which I refer to as an education startup, but which is ultimately much more than just that. ALX is on a mission to transform Africa by developing and connecting a new generation of ethical, entrepreneurial leaders.
If you know me, you probably know that I sit at the Camembert every morning. Experiencing what it is like in the middle of the busiest paths of the Asia Campus (understandably, it is next to the caffeine hub), I get to encounter a plethora of individuals on a daily basis. Be it students or staff, I would always get someone stopping by to have a chat: either to find out about my day, or to talk about theirs. Either way, we both benefit from a mutual exchange of words or a smile.
During my summer internship in Jakarta, a former colleague from Unilever, Dorothy, asked me if she was “missing out” because she wasn’t living abroad. She then asked me to be more specific, “Can you give me the top five points?”
Winnow is addressing a problem that weighs approximately 1.3 billion tonnes each year. That’s over four times heavier than the weight of every person on earth combined. What could possibly be that heavy? The food wasted every year, or about one-third of all food produced. It’s a $1 trillion problem globally and it costs $100 billion to the hospitality industry alone.