For incoming first-year students at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business who want to get a head start on building friendships within their class or make use of some time off before school starts, the M-Trek program may be just the answer. M-Treks, which were first offered in 1999, are small-group, multiday, outdoor adventure trips that take place before the academic year begins. Organized in locations around the world, the trips are entirely student led (by second-year MBA students) and are designed to provide a team-based environment similar to that found at Ross and to promote leadership in a team setting. M-Treks look to be as inclusive as possible—trips are available to suit a wide variety of interests and thus range from hard-core adventure to relaxing sightseeing excursions.
Trips in 2012 included “Hold Me Closer Thai-ny Dancer,” for which students visited Bangkok’s Floating Market, the rainforest in Krabi and the beaches in Phuket; “It’s Not the Greeks’ Default: We Are Here to Party,” which included visits to Athens and to the islands of Ios and Santorini; and a trip to Indonesia called “Balinesia: Eat, Play, Ross.” M-Treks in 2011 included “Diamonds Are Forever,” a trek through eight cities in North America to visit the oldest, most legendary ballparks as well as the new classic ones; “It Takes YOU to Tango,” which took participants throughout Argentina, from a bike tour of Buenos Aires to a cattle ranch to Iguassu Falls National Park; and “License to Kill” to Tanzania, where participants spent seven days scaling the fourth highest mountain in the world, and then enjoyed a two-day safari to Ngorongoro Crater, a UNESCO World Heritage site that has often been called “Africa Eden” because of the area’s incredible biodiversity.
So, whether you are interested in hiking and rafting in Iceland or beaching and snorkeling in Mexico, M-Treks provide a chance to build friendships and develop leadership skills while having a great time.
For more information on other defining characteristics of the MBA program at Michigan Ross or one of 15 other top business schools, please check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.