Mr. Babson MBA’s First Day of School

Today was a rainy day so I opted not to take my bike on the train.  When I got on the train I decided to sit next to Mr Babson MBA, a guy in his late 20’s/early 30’s who brought his cruiser bike which was dripping with water and awkwardly teetering next to him as he held it.

Cycling in the rain? No thanks.

I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll say it again, there aren’t any good places to put your bike on the train.  I figured this would be a good conversation starter and it worked.

I learned that he had just started his first year of MBA school at Babson where 50% of the students are international.  It was a combination of his slight accent and the mention of the international statistic that made me ask him where he was from.  His answer was Mexico.  I didn’t really have much to follow up on the topic of Mexico because I’ve never been there and don’t know anyone who has.  So I talked about my masters in Engineering Management and how it was similar and different to that of an MBA (less finance, more product development).

I asked him why he chose the MBA route because it was also something that I had considered.  He said it was part of a career change.  He worked for a large firm (which he didn’t name) and did supply chain work for a few years but it didn’t really engage him, nor did it give him the same opportunities that an MBA would, especially at Babson which has such a strong international emphasis.

I then steered the topic toward public transit and why he takes the train.  He doesn’t yet have a car but plans to get one before the winter because he thinks it’s easier to have one than to take the train in the cold and snow.  There are pluses and minuses to taking the train in the winter; the trains are typically delayed due to ice/snow, you have to walk around on ice/snow, but also the transit is safer than driving in my opinion.

Taking the train in the winter is no problem as long as you're dressed for it; waterproof winter boots, waterproof winter jacket with a hood, warm hat, warm gloves, warm coffee. I find that the people who complain about the cold are the ones who are not properly dressed for it.

Babson is a few miles from the commuter rail so he really has no choice but to bike if he takes the train.  Biking is tough business in the winter, I don’t recommend it.

Cycling in the winter. Looks like a great idea if your goal is to end up in a morgue as fast as possible.

In the winter biking is a death sentence so I don’t blame him for needing a car because he doesn’t have much of a choice.  I’m not sure if a bus goes to-from Babson and the commuter rail but that could be an option.  For now, he said taking the train has been a great way to get around before he actually purchases his vehicle.  As for me, $1000 for car insurance in MA, no thanks.

Good luck Mr. Babson MBA as you start your masters.

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