The first First Day

By Reid Tileston 15’

Revealing random walk fair outfits, countless panels, armies of stressed out volunteers, and of course the squads stomping around Harper - “what is this madness?” you as. None other than First Day (formerly known as Admit Weekend). This past weekend approximately 320 admits and their partners embarked on First Day, the largest number ever for the new admit event. To help shepherd them along were 180 volunteers from the full-time program. Quarterbacking the weekend were second years John Choi and Jen Phillips who were both “excited” to make the event happen. Their enthusiasm is laudable given that they have spent between 10 and 15 hours per week since September planning the event and will be spending 30 hours during the actual week of First Day.  Asked why they decided to  take charge of it Phillips said, “I was on the team last year, I got a lot out of it, and this presented a leadership opportunity” while Choi is looking forward “to having positive impact on the incoming class” by putting on a memorable event.

                                                                       John Choi and Jen Phillips

                                                                       John Choi and Jen Phillips

Changing the name from Admit Weekend to First Day created a lot of buzz around Booth. Given that many of the students that make it to First Day are going to attend Booth, the event is designed to be less of a sell day and more of an opportunity to lay the groundwork for a successful journey through business school. Aside from changing the name, according to Phillips this year there is an effort to make the event “more condensed, Saturday’s schedule is more open, we want to create an environment where organic personal relationships can form, through, for example, unofficial coffee chats.”

Phillips and Choi estimate that 80% of the 500 people directly involved in First Day will drink, of those 400 they believe that they will average two frosty beverages per day, spread over the 3 days that equates to 2,400 frosty beverages. Both Choi and Phillips are confident that there will be a few characters on the right side of the distribution who will be “bringing up the average.” When you see Phillips and Choi around Harper be sure to thank them for a job well done and consider buying them a frosty beverage next time you see them at TNDC.

For those who yearn to be part of the volunteer force but did not sign-up in time there is still the opportunity to volunteer at the second First Day which is kicking off on Thursday April 23rd. Check your inbox for the upcoming announcements.  


Reid Tileston is a second year at Chicago Booth