Tag Archives: McCombs Affiliated Student Organizations

Getting Involved: MPA Council

I worked for a few years prior to returning to school in the MPA program.  I was a bit of a wallflower as an undergraduate, and I wanted to do the complete opposite here.  I’m doing everything I can to be as active as possible, and one of the great things about UT and the MPA program is that you can be as deeply involved as you desire.  As a traditional MPA, I’m only going to be here for just over a year, so I have to jump in feet first.

To that end, I was very interested in the MPA Council.  A couple weeks ago, they hosted an information session to kick off the fall semester.  I loved that one of their goals is to build the community of the MPA program, and that includes not only students, but alumni, faculty, staff, and employers.  I was elected to an officer position as Vice President and I’m massively excited to help roll the year out.  Ethics Week and Faculty Appreciation Week are both under my office, and I’m currently talking with potential committee chairs who will run those events.  I love building communities, and I want these events to really help weave that MPA tapestry.

Opportunities like these are why I came to UT, and are the kind of experience that you just don’t get other places.  We’re the top accounting program in the country at one of the largest universities in the country.  That combination gives us resources and access that are invaluable.

I’ll close out my first post here with my best accounting joke:

Why are so many students afraid to major in accounting?
They hear that it’s accrual experience.

A Weekend of Sunny Rays is Good for the Mind

I spent this past weekend outside; eating dirt on the soccer field, (that’s fútbol to my Hispanic friends and football to my European buddies), flinging Frisbees around campus, and exploring Austin’s Mount Bonnell. The past couple of weeks have been a little stressful with school, work, and trying to get a hold of my personal life. All I needed was a date with Mother Nature to let it all go.

2013 Business World Cup Competition

Jamal rocks the soccer field.

The Business World Cup brings together the McCombs Affiliated Student Organizations (MASOs) to compete in a 5 on 5 soccer tournament. Teams have the chance to win McCombs glory, fame, and the alleged World Cup trophy. I was lucky enough to be allowed to compete with one of the Undergraduate Business Council teams. Unfortunately, we lost three out of three games, one of which was against the other UBC team. The scores were 3-0, 8-0, and 8-2 (I somehow was able to score one of the two points in the last game). There are those that play gracefully throughout the entire game, where they pace themselves and make sure they don’t push their limits too much at one time. I on the other hand, was weaving within minutes of starting and gradually began to play more and more aggressive as the panic began to set in.

I find it interesting that I have to pace myself when playing sports or when using by brain for academics and general schoolwork. Over time I’ve learned that if I don’t maintain a steady pace and take a deep breath every once in a while, I can’t perform at my best.

2013 Texas Blazers Frisbee Fling

Frisbee Fling is an 18-hole disc golf tournament that’s been held on UT’s campus for the past 12 years. All proceeds from the tournament benefit the Texas Blazers Endowed Scholarship for Eastside Memorial High School in East Austin. Definitely a great use of an hour and a half! I got to work on my Frisbee aim, eat a bunch of those Longhorn Bars, realize said bars were loaded in calories, smack someone in a chicken costume with a Frisbee  and receive a Gildan 100% cotton t-shirt. After playing in the soccer tournament, I was definitely not at my athletic peak, but I was still able to keep up with the rest of my team without having to keel over.

Trip to Mount Bonnell

Almost immediately after the Frisbee fling, I went to explore Mount Bonnell with a few friends. For those of you who didn’t know, Mount Bonnell isn’t actually a mountain. Though it’s described as being the highest point in Austin, it’s lower than the Jollyville Plateau (according to Wikipedia). While it was more than a little steep, it really wasn’t too bad a climb. We were able to get a great view of downtown Austin and of the tower. I really wanted to see the peacocks that I had heard so much about but I guess there weren’t feeling too friendly that day. I did get a great life-chat with my friends though, resulting in the perfect end to my day.

Though I’ve had more productive weekends for school, I really think this mini-vacation was good for the soul and for me to recuperate from academics. I was able to get some quality thinking in about what I wanted and what was important to me. Despite getting a little redder than I would have liked, there were a lot of qualitative benefits to the weekend. Truly some food for thought.