One of the most valuable aspects of the MBA experience at Broad is the diversity of the people who make up the program and the relationships that you build. Daily interactions with classmates and faculty who have a wide range of personal and professional experiences have broadened my horizons and helped me think about problems from new perspectives. This past December, a few classmates and I had the opportunity to experience some of this diversity in a different way: by traveling to India to visit some of the places where our classmates are from and to celebrate the wedding of another classmate.
Our first stop was Mumbai, where we met a classmate who spent time in the area during undergrad. Mumbai is such a vibrant city! I was blown away by the sheer number of people and cars all over the city and how the use of horns was closer to a form of friendly communication than a sign of aggression. One of my favorite parts of Mumbai was the architecture. Many unique buildings and monuments, all reflecting different eras and influences, came together to form a beautiful backdrop to the busy streets. The food was also a highlight (here and everywhere we went). We were introduced to roti, sula and chai, which quickly became staples of most of our meals for the remainder of the trip.
After Mumbai, we headed south to the beaches of Goa for a couple of days of relaxing and enjoying tropical drinks by the Indian Ocean (or under the umbrellas by the pool. PSA: Don’t forget to apply sunscreen).
From Goa, we flew north to Delhi. The weather was a bit cooler, but there was so much to see and do. We visited a Sikh gurdwara and then almost got lost wandering the chaotic streets of Old Delhi, stopping often to try delicious street food and shop in the local markets. We met with another classmate, whose parents had us over for dinner at his childhood home. I think we all walked away with a better idea of what it means to be a good host!
After Delhi, we spent a couple of days in Jaipur, where we toured the old forts and even charmed snakes, before moving on to Chandigarh for the wedding. For most of us, it was our first Indian wedding, and it definitely didn’t disappoint. The wedding was two whole days of celebration, filled with music, dancing and, of course, more great food.
While the sights, tastes and sounds of India were amazing, the best part of the trip was having friends all over the country who were excited to show us the places they’re from and give us a look into what their daily lives were like prior to the MBA program. It’s amazing to think that even though we all met just over a year ago, our friendships have taken us halfway around the world.