Showing posts from April, 2008

My Experience with the Embassy of India in Manila

Are you a Filipino going to India?

Be warned. You may be in for a great deal of frustration.

I've been spending the past week arranging my visa for my Action Consultancy (AC) in India. (The AC is equivalent to AIM's industry internship for its MBA students; I'll blog more about this in future posts). The frustration has really been mounting because of the very confusing and Byzantine system of the Indian embassy here in the Philippines.

First point of frustration: the customer service. I initially called the embassy to clarify the requirements and procedures. The embassy has an automated answering system that has a selection where a caller can get an itemized list of requirements. That's all. No information of procedures, steps or guidelines. I selected the option to talk to a staff member and when I asked my query, she told me I'll find everything I need at the Indian Embassy website. If you look at the site, there are some information, but not the ones I'm looki…

My Learning Team (aka Can Group)

"You live and die with your Can Group."

I heard this advice during my first days in AIM and I really didn't give that much attention because I didn't know what the heck a Can Group was. But after eight months in the MBA program, I pretty much have an idea what a Can Group is and how important it is-- you basically live and die with it.

A Learning Team, what the Can Group is officially called, is composed of 6-8 students and is the "official" grouping of students for the first eight months of core MBA subjects. The MBA program administrators scientifically configure each team to have a balanced composition, whether it is by gender, professional background, or personality type. (I don't know if they consider IQ and EQ, but that's a different story :P) Being your designation for a good portion of your MBA life, you will work exclusively with your Learning Team on group assignments and projects 95% of the time. This means your grade and performance will …

A Dozen Links

Apart from myself, people from everywhere write stuff and talk about the school. Some interesting stuff I found on Google's news and blog searches:
Bok is doing a lot of contemplating, especially on his Action Consultancy (AC)Another classmate, Pia shares there is more to life than being Number OneRavi, one our finance gurus in class, started his investment portfolioInquirer.Net has an article about AIM's recent issuesA bit old, but I didn't know media giant GMA had a story on AIMGMA's rival, ABS-CBN has a more "feel good" story related to AIM
Another old article (when I say old, it's more than two weeks old): A nasty rumor about AIM's moveIsland's blog has a post on the recent Corporate Blogging & Online Reputation Management Seminar I organizedMM 2008 Precy Chan celebrates her wedding anniversaryVery interesting post on an AIM student's learningsMBM 93 Alumna Ruby Bernardo is happy AIM got her to share her testimonial for the AIM …

Term Papers

There should be an X-File case on the "Breaks in AIM" because this "break" season is really a mythical phenomenon.

Classes for our core subjects officially ended last week and usually, that would signal the start of the break right? Wrong. We still have three major papers due this coming week: Management Communication (MC) term paper on Monday, Asian Business Systems (ABS) term paper on Tuesday and Development of the Enterprise (DE) business plan on Friday.

Ideally, we should be using the next two weeks resting and finalizing our Action Consultancy (AC), or MBA internship, arrangements. Since we are grounded far from the ideal, I'm spending a good amount of the week writing term papers. As I write, I'm finalizing my MC paper on strategic storytelling with my dyad partner Sandeep Sharma. The tight schedule forced us to innovate our collaboration process by using Google Docs. So far, we've made the term paper writing and collaboration more efficient and equ…

Do you want to work at Yahoo? Read on.

I received a "tip" from a very reliable source that Yahoo! South East Asia is looking for people for a couple of their openings here in the Philippines. This makes perfect sense as Yahoo! is beefing up its search presence in the country and gearing up for aggressive partnerships in the local scene. I believe Yahoo! is the last of the Top 3 search engines (with Google and Microsoft being the other two) to establish a presence here in the Philippines.
What are the two openings? The first one is for a Search Editor who will be in charge of primarily building taxonomies, classifying online content and analyzing search behavior. The other opening is for a Partner Account Manager, who will be working closely with Yahoo's advertisers and resellers and tasked to implement plans to expand Yahoo's client base.If any of the two positions appeal to you or if you have any questions on the full job descriptions, shoot an email to job_opportunities (at), with the positi…

Last Class Day

Officially, the first eight months of the MBA program is tomorrow April 18. But by virtue of my exemption (Thanks to my CAN group!) in the Management Control Systems (MCS) finals tomorrow, today is my last day of classes. Our classes for today were the last session for General Management & Ethics (GME) under Prof. Jess Gallegos and the Operations Management (OM) final exam.

Since it was the last class session for GME, Prof. Gallegos shared his "Tips To Go," life lessons on making a difference, leadership and your definition of success. It was really a feel-good topic since he was sharing more on his experiences, anecdotes about how some events in his life altered his career and his family life.

Speaking of family life, I find that a touchy topic. When Prof. Gallegos said that at some point in our careers we will have to make tough choices when it comes to family and career (I'm not married by the way), I reflected on it. It's probably because I think I have the te…

Google Day in AIM

Today is Google Day in AIM!

Thanks to Prof. Titos Ortigas' initiative, Google is coming here to give a series of talks to the students, faculty and staff on Google's services that will soon be rolled out in AIM. Google Consultant for the Philippines Aileen Apolo will be speaking on various topics the whole day, from using Internet Marketing to job opportunities in Google.

Here is the Google Day in AIM agenda:
8:00am-9:30am - Google University (MBA students) 9:30am-11:00am - Google Apps for Education (AIM Staff) 11:00am-12:30pm - Break 12:30pm-2:00pm - Putting your business online (All students) 2:00pm-3:30pm - Google Apps for Education (AIM Faculty)Here are the topics covered for each talk for the students:

Google University:
Google 101Google for StudentsGoogle SearchBloggerJob Opportunities at GooglePutting Your Business Online:
Internet Marketing 101 How to Put Your Business Online through Google (Google Apps for Your Domain)Google Adwords Search Engine Optimization Blogging f…

MBA 2008 (December) Commendation List

Now for some good news. :D

The MBA Program released the list of top students who obtained the highest grade point averages for the first set of completed subjects (Language of Business, Quantitative Analysis, Economics, Financial Management 1 and Management of Cost & Profit).

The Commendation List (in alphabetical order):
Ena Liza AngNitin BhagnariRiteesh BhargavaPankaj Dhawan
Wendy LimRuss LoAnton Ng
Kumar RaySandeep Sharma
Vijay SuryanarayananBingo Tongco
Amit Kumar VijayThere was a very simple recognition rite headed by MBA Program Director Mau Bolante and Ms. Tess Magdaleno, our program's secretary. Here are the pics:

Congratulations to everyone who made the Commendation List! :D

Prof. Ricky Lim's reply to the "Concerned Alumnus"

The whole saga our MBA batch is going through seems to be almost drawing to a close as Prof. Ricky Lim tackles point by point the issues raised by a "Concerned Alumus." He emailed me his reply, along with the points he is answering:

Concerned Alumnus: Prestigious accreditations carry a hefty price. Given the various accreditations that AIM has, it is obvious that a slight tuition increase would have been imposed. Since AIM has lost EQUIS (I hear their logo will not be on the new diplomas and transcripts), will the current students be given a refund? Will the incoming students be given a discount from their fees as well?
RAL: The EQUIS and AACSB logos were never in the transcripts or diplomas--just the AIM seal. This goes for all diplomas since 1968, degree or certificate. And as for tution increases since accreditation--and in some years there were none--these were for other cost increases and revaluations of the peso, and not due to paying for accreditations. CA: Yo…

Live Blogging at the WSGSB Dean's Forum

I'm blogging at the forum hosted by the MBA Program Administrators with W. SyCip Graduate School of Business Dean Victoria Licuanan and Associate Dean Ricky Lim. The forum is meant to address the current students' concerns on current burning issues.

Prof. Licuanan started the event and Prof. Lim then proceeded to shed some light on the EQUIS accreditation issue. Prof. Lim outlined the points in which AIM faced with the EMFD. The points were primarily grounded on the faculty, diversity and governance. The final issue was centered on the AIM Faculty Association tiff and Prof. Lim said the school is not entirely agreeable with the findings on that point.

Prof. Licuanan just shared the number of schools with the EQUIS, AMBA and AACSB. She pointed out that the accrediting bodies do give recommendations for constant improvement. She also said that the EQUIS accreditation leans towards academic research, something AIM is not doing much of. She relates that AIM's thrust have always …

A "Concerned Alumnus" Speaks

A few days back, Prof. Ricky Lim, Associate Dean of AIM's W. SyCip Graduate School of Business, answered burning questions from this blog readers in an open Q & A session. His replies were able allay some of the concerns of a good number of people, which delved on placement and education quality. Judging from the people's comments on that post, people were satisfied with the reply.

Except one person.

I received a comment on the post about Prof. Lim's replies from a person who posted under the handle "Concerned Alumnus." His comment was very provocative that I have decide to devote a post on his comment alone. I shall present his thoughts in verbatim:
I believe in AIM. I have faculty friends, past and existing. I have student friends, past and existing. I keep in touch with them. Because I believe in AIM.

I have a lot of questions. I am looking in from the outside. There is lack of official information. I will just make do with what I have and make my questions as…

The Night Before the Financial Management 2 Finals

On the night before the dreaded Financial Management 2 (FM2) Finals, I posed a simple question to the MBA class over various instant messengers: "How's your FM2 preparation?"

"drifting through a morass of molass-consistency of quicksand"
- Bingo Tongco

"messed up"
- Dilip Mansukhani

"i have resolved that to exert effort in aim is useless... the degree of effort you exert is not proportional to the grades that you get... it's just not worth it anymore... just kiss your professors' ass"
- Anonymous (1)

"No problem, just another sleepless night and I'll be okay tomorrow as long as I don't fall asleep during the exam."
- Liberto Siahaan
"not prepared at all; there's no indication where to start or what really to study"
- Anonymous (2)
"what's there to prepare?"
- Phuong Lan Yu
"too much to do, dont know vot to refer to. no standard book provided. had too many profs, which made learning all the mo…

Home Stretch

You know that feeling when you know you're about to finish something? That feeling where you just want things to speed up so that you're done already? Or that feeling something is within your grasp and it's a matter of time before you get it?

That has been the atmosphere in AIM. It's the homestretch for a good portion of the students here-- The Master in Management (MM) and the MBA seniors are graduating in a few weeks and us MBA juniors are nearing the midway of the program. While the the MM and MBA seniors will be taking their permanent break from AIM, for us it's a two week break that would lead to our Action Consultancy or AC (AC is more or less equivalent to our internship).

It's really nice to think that our classes for the first half of the program would be done in a week.


We still have to face the finals from Financial Management 2 (FM2), Operations Management (OM), and Management Control Systems (MCS) before we call this a term. The FM2 exam is killer …

Prof. Ricky Lim Answers

You asked and Prof. Ricky Lim has listened-- the W. SyCip Graduate School of Business has replied to the questions posed in the open Q & A in the last post. Issues like career placement, accreditation, education quality, the MBA program are some of the swirling issues that have hovered over this blog this past week.

I'm sure everyone has anticipated what Prof. Lim has to say so here are his replies to your queries:

RAL: First of all, thanks to everyone for waiting patiently. I was in Indonesia last week and teaching all this week. This is the first breather I have had.

I see many similar questions and I hope I can answer them without redundancy. I welcome all ongoing queries, but please bear with me if I am unable to answer right away. Salamat.
Q: does the management still plan to reaquire the equis accreditation? What's the real status of the aacsb accreditation? im just wondering 'coz when i checked the school's website, the two logos (equis and aacsb) were alread…

Ask Prof. Ricky Lim

In light of recent events pertaining to the EQUIS accreditation, I have asked Prof. Ricky Lim to hold an open Question and Answer session for The AIM Blogger. I'm thankful Prof. Lim accepted my invitation-- Given that he is the Associate Dean of AIM's W. SyCip Graduate School of Business, I think he is in a very good position to address the comments and concerns that have been raised lately.

Here are the ground rules for the Q & A:
Questions must be posted as a comment on THIS blog post only;People may leave questions anonymously;Please be clear with what question/s you want to be answered;
Please avoid foul or offensive language;With that, I'm starting the thread with a few questions from the comments from the previous post:
As a recent admit, this is a very serious issue for me .What should i take from this news ? Could change my decision to join .
What else? the school is screwed! from the president, associate dean, all the way to the professors!.. They are politician m…