The Plain People of Ireland*

* Irish Times columnist Myles Na gCopaleen wrote an erratic but often genius column in which he would sometimes engage in a tongue-in-cheek discussion with the “plain people of Ireland”.  I’d highly recommend his work (including under the pseudonym Flann O’Brien) to overseas colleagues that are interested in the Irish sense of humour.

The Plain People of Ireland: What are ya up to these days at all?

Myself: I’m back in College

The Plain People of Ireland: Sure didn’t ya have a big job there in Pfizer?

Myself: Aye, Pfizer was good, but I decided to do an MBA.

The Plain People of Ireland: What’s your MBA in?

Myself: Basketball.

It’s fair to say that MBA programmes have failed to enter the consciousness of a good proportion of the Irish public, and I’ve heard Alumni claim that it’s only abroad that their MBA is properly valued. Perhaps this is the case, but to measure the success of my time in Smurfit, I’ll look beyond the narrow scope of how well it’s viewed by potential employers or my peers. For me, my time in Smurfit is not just a means to an end, the process of handling the workload, working with classmates and taking on new and diverse subjects is in itself subtly transformative. I may not be head-hunted by Google after graduation, but I will have benefited from this year nonetheless. As we’ve learned in financial reporting, it’s often the intangible assets that are the most important.