Pleasanton’s Chalk Art Festival-The Big Draw

This past Saturday I went to Pleasanton, for the Chalk Art Festival-The Big Draw. I don’t typically go to Pleasanton, the last time I was there was probably a year ago. I arrived to the festival at around 11AM. I wasn’t surprised that it was a busy and warm day, however, I was surprised to find parking with relative ease. This meant that not a lot of people were there. I’ve never heard of the Chalk Art Festival before. 

I was impressed with the amount of people actually participating in the festival. I looked around to see all the drawings that were done that day. Some by children, others by professionals, and others by just people like me who wanted to try it out.
The highlight of the day was to find some Afghan artists participating in the festival. I was happy to see their work displayed with the hundreds of other pieces, although, their’s were oil paintings and sketches, it was still very nice to see them be a part of something like this. 
The festival overall, was not that interesting. Probably because I’m not a big fan of that form of art, and it was hot. I don’t do too well in the heat and get intense migraines. 
I quickly found a nice little restaurant where I could check in with some classmates to see how things were going for them. One of them had their face painted. They seemed to enjoy the festival. 
I did enjoy how organized the festival was. Art, usually messy, was very well maintained to designated areas. People brought their dogs, their loved ones, their friends, and their own art to show around. Although, it was a very warm day, I did enjoy the few hours I spent walking around and just window shopping. I didn’t purchase a single thing but I think it is beneficial to the city to invite tourists, restaurants prospered. 

Tips 4 A New MBA Student!



1. Be On Time!

This may be obvious but being on time means being early. This helps reduce the stress of being late, frantic, and something negative happening. You are able to find better and cheaper parking and get some morning breakfast. It just helps to be early.

2. Eat Healthy!

This matters, it matters because eating healthy allows you to avoid gaining weight, slowly becoming lazy and tired. Food can make or break how you feel. Try yogurt, a cup of coffee and a banana. 

3. Give yourself time after class.

By giving yourself 2 or 3 hours after class, you can have a break before work. Grab some food, run an errand all before you have to do something else. Or you can use this time to get together with your group to discuss a project or assignment. It really helps to have some flextime.

4. Dress to Impress!

Waking up everyday before the sun is up is difficult. The commute takes a lot out of you too. Dressing in sweats becomes enticing when the weather is cold and you are a little late. The problem is that you become lazy and this becomes a habit. Dress as if you are going into a meeting everyday because looking good makes you feel good. This helps you be a bit more productive and confident throughout the day.

5. Know Others!

Try to get to know other students outside of class. Go to dinner, lunch, or for a coffee when you can. But don’t spend too much time on this and get caught in unnecessary drama.

6. Avoid Negativity!

When you are in a cohort, you are bound to like some more than others. If you sense that someone is negative or complains a lot, avoid them. You don’t want to stress yourself out.

7. Don’t Procrastinate.

Easier said than done. However, if you just try to do the work before the night it is due, it helps you learn and do better on the project. 

8. Set up a schedule.

Set a schedule for yourself each day to study for that class for at least 2 hours. This helps you not procrastinate, learn the material, and have questions for the professor. Try to maintain this schedule, some days do more, some less but a minimum of at least an hour each day, including weekends helps significantly.

9. Set a weekend aside for school.

Make one day on your weekend (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) to work on the week’s assignments. This helps you get ahead or catch up. One of the best things you can do for yourself. It lets you print, get rough drafts done, study more, or meet up with group-mates.


Nothing is more important than networking. Go to networking events, events you don’t typically want to go to learn more about an industry you are not exposed to, and just open yourself up to new people. 

11. Save Money!

Do your best not to spend needlessly. This includes food, travel, parking, gas, clothes, etc. You are a student, not a billionaire. You need to make sure that if you take out a loan it is the least you can get to just cover your tuition. Minimize your expenses and save your money.

12. WORK!

Besides saving your money, try to earn some money. This includes trying to get a paid internship or a part time job. You should do this to get your daily pocket money and possibly save. The economy is bad and you have to think of the future. 

13. Update your LinkedIn, FaceBook, and Twitter—-Resume.

In today’s society, LinkedIn almost replaces your resume. It is your resume, online. Employers are going to look at all of these things. It needs to be up to date, true, and clear. Have a good profile picture, no drinking, lack of clothes, and overall, it has to be you.

14. Be Organized!

This helps me a lot. We have a lot of reports, work, and readings to do. You have to organize your study are, your computer files, and you have to be able to know what you are looking at just by reading the title. Being organized helps you be efficient.

15. One day at a time.

You may have a bad quarter, someone may have passed away,  you may have lost a job, car failure, etc. One quarter does not define your entire MBA experience. Just take one day at a time and if you had a bad week, the following week should be good. Just try to keep positive.


Finally, just do what you think is right and don’t let anything bother you. Deliver on your promises, try new things, and just be you.

Technology and Society During Rough Times

Extending a hand of hope

Extending a hand of hope

After reading Matt Butter’s article Boston Bombing: How Google, Social Media And Cloud Bring Hope Amid Tragedy, it can be found here:

I was amazed at how far we have come in our uses of technology. How will technology shape events like these in the future? Many of us can not live a day without our phone, I’ve tried, we feel “naked” because we feel that something is lost. What if we were to lose a loved one, someone we knew, or just a stranger that was close to us. Do we help? Do we ignore it? How do we help? Why should we help?

These questions are poised after a horrible incident like the Boston bomb attacks or other acts of terror.

I do believe technology will have a big role in the future. Similar to the link which allows people to find loved ones that are missing, there will be plenty of other services that can be initiated with technology.

Not only a place to stay, searching for people, but also communicating with people. Twitter was instrumental in the youth movement in the Middle East, FaceBook has allowed people to quickly give a status update, all of these tools allow people to let their families know that they are okay if they can’t make an international call. The internet is one of the biggest tools that connect people and in this capacity it is nothing but useful.

I believe that technology is the future of possible attacks as well as the key to quickly alleviating the threat and the aftermath. It is a two way street, that’s the sad part.

The human element will always be there. Regardless of motives, there are bad apples in this world. But there are hundreds of great people in this world, that go nameless in our society but are heroes. You hear stories of a man running into a burning building to save a stranger’s cat. Today’s technology allows people to do this quicker and more efficiently with little or no money behind it.

Technology helps people in so many ways.

Social Media and Civic Engagement

As a student that is not given every opportunity in the world, I use technology and social media to enhance my experience and capacity to network myself.

I do believe that social media and technology has enhanced my experience as a student. Social media and technology are the tools that I use the most today. All the info I want is at my fingertips. When a case study is mentioned in class or an example that I’m unfamiliar with is used, I simply type it into my computer and look it up and get a quick understanding of what it is.

I believe that the modern way of education is through technology. How-to videos on Youtube, blogs from different people around the world, and free online material all offer the opportunity to enhance knowledge and a wide variety of topics. It is almost primitive to just listen to a lecture and not do a little search of the topics on your own. I know I use all the resources available to me.

I believe that technology and social media have improved and encouraged me to be more civically engaged and it allows me to increase my social capital, or my networks. That is one of the most important things in today’s world of technology. Nothing is new nor respected unless you have people behind what you say or do. I’m active on LinkedIN, Twitter (although, I don’t use this tool too much), FaceBook and a few other sites that allows me to engage more with people all over the world, in an industry I’m interested in, and just learn.

I’m more civically engaged because I know what is happening, I know what I want to get more involved in, and I stay connected to what is going on. This wasn’t the case a few years ago when I was less inclined to use these tools.

I believe that technology has let me balance my life. I’m able to stay connected to what is happening at my job, with friends, and everything else in my life. At first, it is scary not knowing how to use a new tool but then it allows us to manage our life with greater ease. I love technology.