After class on Wednesday, a BIG group of MBAs made their way to St. Pancras Station to hop on a Eurostar to Paris. We were dispersed between three trolleys and even though I’m biased, trolley 7 was the party trolley. Thanks to our fearless leaders, Cass and Taku, we made it to Paris smoothly. From there we drove to HEC Paris for the MBA Tournament (MBAT), the annual gathering of top MBA schools across the world to compete, network, and have some fun.
The Party Room consisted of me, Rebecca, Cody, and almost Brandon. We went to bed early as the games began early on Thursday. The buses were slow to arrive, but our spirit was ready to go at 8:35 am. We had Agent Cody Banks ready to wheel and deal for us as we took on our respective sports. The mirror selfie became a daily staple for MBAT.
My first sport of MBAT was volleyball and we did not play until noon, so I ran around the HEC campus to cheer on my fellow classmates! There is just something so special about sports and how it can bring groups together. We had an easy first win with foosball since the other team didn’t show. Then the boys crushed their first basketball game. Volleyball ended too quickly for me after we lost to Esade (Barcelona). Jack, Brandon, Lukas, Prabhu, and I put up a good fight though. Next three Cambridge teams competed in Trivia, with one of our teams placing SECOND! (Not the team I was on with Jasreen, Cyrus, and Akanksha – but we had so much fun!).
Rebecca and I opted to stay on campus for the evening events rather than go to the hotel in between. Night 1 ended with the dance competition and Cambridge was up FIRST. Our team put on a fantastic show and danced their way to a silver medal. Cambridge brought the energy and the crowd was loving it. Plus we even choreographed everything ourselves.
We started the second day cheering on our runners – Cass, Jo, Mario, Tommaso all crushed it at 9 in the morning! After that I made my way to Dodgeball where Dom coached her heart out. Once again, the Cambridge spectators were unmatched in their cheering skills. I love seeing our class come together to support one another. We went and watched some basketball after that – go sports! But really, day 2 was Rebecca’s day – she had tennis match after tennis match. Cody and I went to watch her and Taku take on one final match before it was all over. Then we all stayed to cheer on Karina as she BTHO Oxford.
The night 2 activity was Battle of the Bands. We were back on campus in time to listen to Oxford kick off the night. Once again the Cambridge team put on a fantastic performance. We were all jumping and screaming like the true fan boys and girls that we are. I have to say that Cambridge seemed to have the most school spirit, unfortunately that doesn’t get you points.
The final day of the tournament. Cody left the party room to go to Paris and Rebecca and I went to campus to cheer on tennis/table tennis.
What really happened on the final morning – Jo and I were running around trying to complete the photo challenge on the MBAT app. In the style of BeReal, there were lots of different prompts/challenges that we were tasked with capturing on our phones. Jo was the real winner here, she earned that gold and even the guy who created the app was excited to meet her. I was honoured to come in second and Virut was the real dark horse, he was able to secure bronze in a matter of hours.
Today was relatively chill since we were running out of sporting events to cheer on. That is until the afternoon, when I somehow got roped into the rope pull. Pun intended. This was the first year HEC has ever included this in the competition. As I was told by an HEC-er, they stole this idea from a fraternity in Georgia. Truly a one of a kind experience that we had the chance to do twice. I have never felt so weak and yet so strong at the same time. We were able to secure a bronze medal and you bet that Rebecca and I have been wearing those ever since.
The final event of MBAT was the Gala at the Interncontinental Hotel in Paris. After spending the afternoon in mud, it felt great to get dressed up for a fun night with everyone.
Early in the night they announced that CAMBRIDGE GOT THIRD PLACE!!!!
While it’s a win for everyone, I think that win truly belongs to Cass and Taku – our Cambridge Judge School Club (CJSC) Sports Chairs. They have worked tirelessly for months on MBAT. This experience would not be what it was without their efforts.
A fun night was had by all and we are still trying to determine where the trophy is…the night ended with McDonald’s because what else would happen and then we wore our medals to sleep.