Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Phone Call (Decision)

At 8AM on Friday May 27th, my better half was getting ready for school (in Hyde Park) and I was getting ready for work (post-early-morning Conference call) in Lakeview. We were on the phone and I was trying very hard not to bring up the glaring fact-of-the-day.

Today, May 27th, was the final day for INSEAD to accept (and reject) incoming students for their December 2011 MBA class. It was 8AM in Chicago, which meant it was 4PM in France. On a good week that is about 1hr from the weekend.

Up until this point, I was hopeful. I was a bit worried about one of my essays where I basically talked about how great Thailand is, only to find, three weeks after submitting the essay, that there were violent protests throughout Bangkok and the entire country was thrown into turmoil. I truly believed that THAT one essay I had written would actually end all my chances. If there was any doubt about the application up until now, this would lead the admissions committee to remove me from "Doubt" pile to the "Out" pile.

And she laughed at this idea, trying to lighten my mood - constantly reminding me that the process was 4-step. My application was solid. The interviews had gone well (read post on interviews: May 8th). All in all, if INSEAD was going to reject me based on my inability to tell the future, then so be it. The Oracle would have to get prepared for part time b-school in Chicago.

She's been right almost every step of the way so far, and a pillar of support... I should've listened.

Instead, a few minutes after our conversation, my gradual acceptance of the inevitable rejection started to set in - and then, my phone started to ring: caller ID started with +33 (yes, France country code)

Before answering the phone I asked myself a simple question - would INSEAD go through the trouble of informing students of rejection via phone calls? Maybe they wanted to make a special case out of me, seeing how "gullible" my essay on Thailand was (by the way - I will stand by that essay word-for-word even in light of the crisis).

I was greeted by the sweet French accent that I so missed from my days of IB French in High School. And it was INSEAD - before I could apologize for I truly believed they were calling to reprimand me, I was cut-off by "Welcome to INSEAD..."

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