Brad Pankey

Mid-Week Deep Breath

I live in the Graduate Village apartments behind Matt Knight Arena. I look out my window and have the a view of one of the most stunning buildings on campus and the premier basketball arena in all of Oregon. And yes, that’s ALL of Oregon. I wake up early and run on Pre’s trail, a bark-chipped path through Alton Baker park, and then start my fifteen-minute walk to the Lillis complex on the other side of campus. This is how I start my day.

On my walk to day three of the MBA prologue, I couldn’t help but smile. After all, it was a beautiful morning, I was walking through a campus that is only just starting to buzz with energy, and I was relatively awake, albeit laced with caffeine, after a twelve-plus hour day yesterday. That’s right. Day TWO was twelve-plus hours. Having not been in school since 2009, day one felt like I was trying to start a rusty lawn mower and day two felt like I was trying to run a marathon with the rusty lawn mower dragging behind me. I suppose working on case studies for hours in groups and surprise fifty-five-page reading assignments will make you feel a bit out of sorts. Feeling battered and bruised heading into day three one would think a smile would be hard to summon. This was certainly not the case–it was actually quite the opposite.

Day three was a time to stop and appreciate what we had just gone through. Day three reminded me why prologue is so valuable and why I am here. It’s about the process, the journey, and the experience of doing. There are no grades in the prologue, it will not determine whether I land that dream job or not, but it will prepare me for what it will be like on the way to the destination, or the culmination of this program. For me, I am not here seeking any one destination, but instead I am here to experience what it’s like to to move in that direction, to be challenged by the great minds that lead us students in this program, and I am here because I know I will enjoy the journey. I have no set expectations of this program. My dad has always said, “expect nothing, and inspect everything” and I believe this holds true here. The value is the inspection along the way without holding expectations of a single outcome. Don’t look ahead with worry, but instead look at what’s around and enjoy the sights.

For those reading this looking at this program wondering what it might be like, I can say with certainty that it will not be easy. However, it will be an amazing opportunity for personal growth. It is an opportunity to meet people from all over the world and with varying backgrounds. It is a chance to learn from the best but also with the best. The people I have met and gotten to know only briefly have blown me away so far with their intelligence. I’m only three days through and I am excited by the fact that I only have about two years left! What will day four have in store for us? Well, according to the Aussie in the group, we are all required to go to Karaoke…. Karaoke it is then 🙂

Cheers,

Brad Pankey

Written by Brad Pankey

I am a native Oregonian who has spent time in the Bay Area teaching PE and South Korea teaching English. Pursuing an MBA in Sports Marketing is a dream come true as I grew up enamored with the University of Oregon culture. As runner growing up idolizing Steve Prefontaine and living and breathing running, I think I have found the perfect place for me to call home for few years.

Welcome and Pre-Prologue Thoughts

Welcome! For the next two weeks I will be among a handful of new MBA students who will blog about our experiences as we officially, and finally, start the two-year journey in the Oregon MBA program with the MBA Prologue.  It seems as though it has taken forever for this day to arrive, but here I sit less than one day before we kick things off. Having already spent some time with a few students in my cohort, and if this last Saturday was an indicator of times to come, I am certain that this will be two of the best years of my life. Each person brings a unique perspective and skill that I can’t wait to learn from. Needless to say, I am excited to be a part of the best Sports Marketing program in the country!

Admittedly, I was nervous in the months, weeks, and days leading up to the start of Prologue and the first classes. What if I am not cut out for this? What if others are way ahead of me? All of my fears and questions were put to rest after spending the day with some amazing people–and all while the Ducks put an epic beat-down on the Tennessee Volunteers. I realized pretty quickly that we, the students, are mostly all in the same boat. We are all nervous, we all have questions, but now I see that we are all in this together. Thank you to those of you whom I spent the day with. You helped me relax and made me excited for what is to come.

I will wrap up my first entry by introducing myself. I am a native Oregonian who has lived all over the state. I grew up on the coast, studied and worked in Central Oregon, and obtained my undergraduate degree at Western Oregon in Monmouth. In between my stops in Oregon, I have also lived in the Bay Area and spent four months teaching English in South Korea. I have worked in restaurants, retail stores, and most recently in education where I taught PE and coached sports. Motivated by my father, my hero, I now find myself fulfilling a lifelong dream of attending the University of Oregon. I am seeking my MBA through the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center, and doing so in Track Town, USA. Running in the footsteps of Pre and walking the same paths that Bill Bowerman once did is almost surreal. I couldn’t be more grateful for this opportunity.

Now, the only left to do is figure out how to tie a tie….

Cheers,

Brad Pankey

 

Written by Brad Pankey

I am a native Oregonian who has spent time in the Bay Area teaching PE and South Korea teaching English. Pursuing an MBA in Sports Marketing is a dream come true as I grew up enamored with the University of Oregon culture. As runner growing up idolizing Steve Prefontaine and living and breathing running, I think I have found the perfect place for me to call home for few years.