The month of November kickstarted with the midterm exam. The following day to the exam, we had an information session for various electives to choose from for the spring term. After wrapping up the session we all walked on a sunny day to the ‘Track and Field’ bar for the MMA and MFRM fall social. It was such a great time to unwind after the midterms and constantly incoming assignments. The place had some fun games, beer, wine, and a lot of pizza. What a lovely afternoon. The perfect TGIF feeling! November was also the time when we could see the season changing. It started getting colder; over time the fall colours slowly faded, and I could finally experience my first snowfall in Canada. For me It was beautiful a sight, seeing the city turn white from orange and yellow and red.
Feeling the heat
We were warned of how stressful/ intense the ‘hell’ term can potentially be. We were mentally prepared for it to some extent. But when we actually went through it, we were hit by so many curve balls, juggled assignments and extracurriculars while trying to stay sane though it all. We then knew exactly why it was called the HELL term. I would say the month of November was a really busy month for us. We were always on our toes during this time of the semester (the actual name of this term is the tools term). This term introduced us to various analytical tools like R, Python, SQL. What I loved about this term is how well structured and practical it was. It seemed as if it was designed keeping in mind the bigger picture of how things run in the corporate world.
The individual assignments of this term gave us a chance to hone our skills and the group assignments were usually cases which immensely helped us bridge the gap between the technical and business side of a problem statement. During this month, we developed a better understanding about our practicum projects. We started doing some research work and reading papers related to our projects. It was my first time working with an ecommerce firm and learning so much about marketing excited me. I was looking forward to the first sprint in January where I would get my hands on the data and understand the online market better. With so many things happening parallelly in this month, one major life skill this term has taught me is time management.
Highlight of my Rotman experience – clubs!
One of the major reasons for choosing this program was the various clubs the school had to offer. I am a part of the Rotman Business Analytics Club, Rotman Marketing Association, Rotman Marketing Association, and South Asian Business Association clubs . For me, being a part of multiple clubs was the highlight of my Rotman experience. I got to participate in various industry events where I was able to network with people and find my areas of interest. In the month of November, I participated in two case competitions. They were Microsoft product management for the RMA and Toronto Police services for RBAC. Case comps like these are excellent opportunities to work with people across programs and build a larger network. I thoroughly enjoyed getting my hands dirty modeling the data, understanding the business problems, and brainstorming for solutions. The Finance Lab became my second home during this time. We would sit until late after classes and work on our cases. I miss the midnight pizza runs and the banter. Our team reached the finals for Toronto Police service, and it was great to see that 3 out of 5 finalist teams were MMAs. Having learned so much in such a short time through these competitions felt rewarding. It taught us to put all our theoretical knowledge into practical scenarios. We presented our solutions to the entire analytics team of the Toronto Police services. These case comps built more confidence in me as I learned to work in crunched timelines while coming up with creative solutions and presenting it to a larger audience.
Also, this was the month when the FIFA world cup commenced. Fleck atrium offered exciting match screenings and free snacks. The place was always filled with football fans and passers-by peeping to get a glimpse of the score between classes.
Rotman career services and program services provided great support throughout. They conducted various seminars and workshops to help us upskill . They were always prompt in sending us announcements and answering our queries. Our career coach Kristina was always there to help and guide me on this professional journey with an ever-smiling face. Coming to a cold country and adapting to the weather was challenging, especially for a morning person like me. Waking up to utter darkness was hard before the day light savings started. Our mental health and wellness programs manager Tanya loaned us SAD lamps. An SAD lamp is a light therapy instrument that is designed to mimic sunlight. That was a game changer for me during the initial cold days. And oh, how can I forget the most special guest who visited us – Bailey. Towards the end of the month, we had a therapy dog who came in to spread joy. She was such a delight! I have always been a dog person and I miss my German shepherd every single day. Meeting Bailey was one of my happy days at Rotman.
All in all, Rotman made sure to provide support in every way possible – may it be academics, professional development, or mental health and wellness. There was always someone we could reach out to if we felt like we're stuck at any point in time. That is when I knew for sure I was in good hands and taken care of.
Looking back, though this was a challenging period for me, when I see my growth trajectory and learnings along the way, I cannot help but smile at how far I’ve come. For the next month we have our final presentations and exams approaching. We are almost halfway through the course. Along with preparing for the exams I am looking forward to our first proper holiday – the winter break. I have a list of Christmas movies to watch, books to read and a trip to Montreal planned. After this break, I am sure to come in more rejuvenated and enthusiastic. But for now, it’s time to finish up the last few assignments and wrap up this term.
The Master of Management Analytics is designed to give students the advanced data management, analytics, and communication skills needed to become an analytics professional.