“All in all, it’s just a Not another brick in the wall” I am sure Pink Floyd would have had a different lyrics if he would attended Oxford lecture theatre of Säid Business School. This hyper tech-enabled classroom is certainly not another brick in the wall.
1. That Window on the wallA
First time I got my allocated seat in the Oxford lecture theater / Classroom, the big and bold names plate helped give a name to the face. I still remember the first day, my neighbours on either side and the perspiring excitement that was making me nervous with joy. The classroom was was clozy, the honeycomb colur of Oxford heritage building was in the interior.. and my mind on that 3ftX4ft glass window, and I can see full time MBA basking in the bright and chilly British morning. Many times this window was the gateway to the journey to think outside the box, or daydream.
I glanced around, while others are also looking at each other, trying to access the depth, knowledge, best friends, connect and network. And then the class begins with a welcome speech from Dean Kathy Harvey. A sence of pride, achievement, belongingness to the world’s top and probably the oldest University slowly seeps in.
2. A Modern Recluse
A Modern Recluse Where The Mind Is Liberated, Hands Are Raised To Voice Diverse Views, Knowledge Is Unstructured And Every View Is Debated.
3. The Class Rule Book
Strangely enough, we did not have many rules for the Oxford lecture theater , while “time” was the one most followed rule. The professors started the class to the drop of the hour and apologised proffesely if is he/she exetended by 5 min of our lunchtime.
There were no entry/exit rules from the class, anyone wishing to take a bio-break or leave the class to pick that phonecall, are welcome to do so without disturbing others. After paying a whopping £2000 per day and the opportunity cost of not being in the class, physically and mentally, there must be a pressing need by the senior executives, to leave the class, and the prof. probably respected that choice and flexibility.
4. DEBATES ARE WELCOMED
The engagement of dialogues is what is the most exciting thing of the class. Many or most discussion, had conflicting views, sometimes challenging own prejudice and understanding other’s perspective. The discussions were very well moderated and clearly orchestrated by the prof. who not only picked the volunteers who raised their hands but also the most silent and analytical shy face, and some time to the amazement of the class, it was the most insightful view
A stark contract with childhood classroom, is none was made to stand on bench or sent out to dean’s office for talking with fellow student. The reason? No we are not that unsocial, or uber attentive, we had our note taking devices open with web version of whatsapp chat.. Ahaa.
2. THE OPULENT SKOLL CLUB
The perfectly spaced breaks were designed for the much-deserved oxygen for the brain and sugar for the blood. The open-air, rooftop Skoll Club, and its well stocked Bar is a not to miss part of the Oxford Lecture Theatre.
The 7 star facilities of the bar/ club, ample plus chester sofa, allowed the debate to flow over in smaller groups. We got to know that person who asked the same questions that, I also felt to ask and find a deep similarity over the break time, a bond to nurture for rest of life.
In the next two year, the butler knew us out favourites, and made us tea, coffee, chilled drinks, snacks, fruits… and above all, there was a personalised service for each person, that only very few college cafes can offer with that level of impeccable standards.
The buzz here, is comforting and competitive. Some finishing thier calls to their loved ones, while inhaling fresh british air (After British Meat and British Milk we may see this shortly after Brexit). But there is an air of pride, accomplishment, ask, share and very subtle know me that follows.
The below drink was a summer special coffee. I improvised it greatly and the barman was always glad to make a glass for me. The drink alter became soo popular, that others used to order it as T-N-G Drink. Its speciality is layers of flavours, Almond Syrup, Almond Milk, Coconut Syrup, Ice.. and then Double Expresso poured, shaken not stirred.
If we are still thirsty after the Harvard Case Study, and the conversation over the biodegradable tea bags in the Skoll Club, the lecture theater is well stocked with premium water. The beautiful shape of the Harrowgate Water Bottle, with the diamond cut design, and taste of the natural spa water. And offered in Still and Sparkling variation too.
Must not forget the passionate debate we had on out private whatsapp group, on this single use bottles. Must say the perspective of green and glass health and safety was good enough to gulp a bottle full. I still had some time, visited the site of the bottle company. After all they must have a successful business and brand to be part of the Oxford Lecture Theatre.
I loved the taste of water, much more after a quick visit to their well appointed brand website. Below is a screen shot that welcomed me. Some day an Oxford Lecture Theater photo must be there.
4. Debates on Plastic
On a recent, Dec 2019 visit to Said Business School for a seminar, I found the plastic bottle is replaced with glass tumblers and water bottles… Greeta, are you listening, we are changing.