After 4 months of intense reading, writing and analyzing, my first semester of grad school at Milano is over. I’ve finally finished all of my case studies, take-home tests, essay tests, multiple choice Economics questions and reflective papers, and it feels great. I couldn’t pick a favorite class from the semester but there have been favorite learning moments. These include being introduced to the world of competitive markets and Adam Smith’s economic theory while the world economy was crashing down around us, discussing ways that we see ourselves as leaders for social change while we prepare for Barack Obama to assume office of the U.S. Presidency, learning the legal aspects and foundational theory of nonprofits while Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme caused numerous charities and philanthropic organizations to sadly shut down operations, and discussing theories of management style while executives of Big 3 car companies were down on their knees asking the U.S. government for handouts.. Suffice it to say it has been an interesting 4 months, both in and out of the classroom. That is what interests me most though: being able to relate my learning with real-world events. Unfortunately most of the news recently has been negative and depressing, so let’s hope that next semester things are looking up! But until then, I will be enjoying my month long break from my studies. I’ll be relaxing out West with family for a bit and then visiting friends in Chicago and Iowa before I head back to New York for some free time and visitors. Ahhhhhh….. Happy Holidays everyone!