Les Roches hotel management school swimming pool in winter

A Semester’s Near End

16 Dec 2013 | by Spencer Ong


Wow, with our first stick-to-the-ground snowfall and a cloud cover for miles over the cities below, Bluche has been a very pretty white for the past couple of days.

It has also been rather dark under the eyes of students toward this near-end of the semester. However, this past month has been an amazing one, because students are feeling that strong sense of accomplishment.

While this experience is apparent among all Les Roches students, this article will specifically focus on the challenges and constraints facing the MBA students.

To be quite honest, there was a slow period during my first semester when I wondered if we were being faced with enough challenges. Besides two decently difficult papers, the workload was seemingly easy. I was originally expecting weekly assignments similar to the standard of most universities, but that is not how things are done here.

Instead, MBA students are given the chance to become acquainted with their surroundings early on. Then, toward the end of the semester, most things are thrown at you all at once, and it is done like that on purpose in order to create constraint.

Three weeks ago, we were assigned eight different group projects and three individual assignments to be turned in within two to three weeks, depending on the class. Even remembering which classmates were in which group projects was difficult to manage. To say the least, the slow period was finally over, and constraint became the common theme. MBA students working in groups

One reason why students are bombarded with presentations and reports is because the classes are well entwined. A topic learned in Strategic Operational Management, for example, is directly correlated to what is explained in Leadership and Development. Hence, it is recommended to not skip a Strategic Marketing class, because you would likely miss out on a million dollar concept relevant to the Sustainability class.

Once I sat back and realized how the program was well thought out and interconnected, my expectations were exceeded. Managing a variety of projects with a diverse group of people has been extremely difficult, but it is also what makes this program so great. These constraints challenge us to organize ourselves, yet teach us to cope against similar situations we may face in the future. Additionally, this overload has forced us to maturely step away from our social circles, and encouraged us to collectively spend more time together. This is how we deal with stress, while at the same time, network, and celebrate life.


Now that it is time to start revising for finals, it feels like the MBA1 semester has suddenly come to an end. I think it is safe to say that while we are all excited to head home and see our families and other familiar faces, we are patient for the day we have to leave. While many students may prefer to stay and shred the slopes of the elite Crans Montana Ski Resort, the holiday season will be a great refresher to prepare for MBA2, and of course, to dedicate several weeks toward perfecting our dissertations.

Spencer Ong


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