Saturday, June 21, 2008

Day 9. June 14, 2008

Day 9. June 14, 2008

It’s Saturday. While the rest of the world was sleeping in, we began the day with a studio on Innovation with Professor Franklin. Our teams worked on creating innovative ideas for Bridgestone and Caterpillar Financial projects. Following a quick break, Professor Johnsen led a studio on New Media Marketing – the role of the internet, blogs and social networks in business marketing.

Then it was time for a fun surprise. Our charter buses arrived about 10:30 and, while the studio was finishing up, our staff stocked the buses with water and materials for our annual “Urban Adventure.” We loaded the buses and headed out to LP Field, home of the Tennessee Titans.
There were lots of “where are we going” kinds of expressions as we arrived at the stadium.

We unloaded the buses and gave a quick debrief to the teams – each team member received a list of clues (written as mind benders) to interesting landmarks in downtown Nashville, a bottle of water, and $10. The objective: each team is to determine the answer to the clue, find that landmark and make a team photo at the landmark. Each landmark is worth varying points (the more complex riddles are worth more than the simple ones). Teams have till 3:00 PM to return to Vanderbilt with their photos for check in. The team that is able to obtain the most points by solving the riddles and getting the corresponding photos wins the competition. The tradition of Urban Adventure is “rain.” This year was no exception. We arrived at LP Field to light rain – but the day cleared within an hour and the teams successfully completed the competition.

The Adventure Race is an opportunity for participants to accept a challenge a bit out of the ordinary and participate in a team process. It’s always an interesting view of the human dynamic to see how young men and women embrace this challenge.

By 3:00 PM, all the teams had “checked in” to the dorms to shower and freshen up. For dinner, we grilled steaks and chicken on the Owen patio and then had our first annual “Talent Night” – a mixture of amazing music, comedy, dance, “limbo” and song. I can’t possibly do Talent Night justice without a posting all its own…. So I’ll do that later.

To end the day, we reviewed the results of the Urban Adventure. After the scores were tabulated, Team 2 was declared the winners of the Urban Adventure. Members of the winning team are: Lindsey Bodenstab, Andrew Esakov, James Fuqua, Rob Hunziker, Sarah Leggett, Ashley Morgan, Marc Rigsby, Anna Rogers, Michael Shatto and Tina Wu. Coach for the team was Jared Degnan. The winning team will join me for a fantastic dinner at Flemings Steakhouse later in the program.

Tomorrow is Sunday. We give the teams a bit of a rest…. We’ll begin our day at 11:30 AM…

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