Student Voices - What Really Binds Us.

Keep Calm and Beat Duke

Journalist and former CBS anchor Charles Kuralt famously rhapsodized at the UNC bicentennial in 1993:

“What is it that binds us to this place as no other? It is not the well or the bell or the stone walls. Or the crisp October nights or the memory of dogwoods blooming. Our love for this place is based on the fact that it is, as it was meant to be, the University of the people.”

With all due respect to Mr. Kuralt, I beg to differ. And I think that my fellow MBA@UNC classmates would agree. As an undergraduate, I was lucky enough to witness firsthand the madcap hijinks on Franklin Street that constitutes a victory celebration after a Carolina win. Would a fully online program comprised of students who might not have been to Chapel Hill (yet) be able to fully capture the rivalry in all its glory? I am happy to report that my fellow MBA@UNC students are as ardent Carolina fans as any on-campus student, past or present. 

Our Managerial Economics course includes a prediction market, which involves using our collective wisdom to try to forecast events. Our questions have ranged from predicting new car sales for January to predicting when Greece will get its bailout. Shortly before the UNC-Duke game in February, a new question was posed in the marketplace: Who would win the matchup between Carolina and Duke? Classmates near and far tuned into the game, and for a few hours on a Wednesday night in early February, we were all united in rooting for the Tar Heels. Although many of us “lost” in that prediction market by picking Carolina to win, we all enjoyed the class references leading up to the event.

The fervor of the game lives on in class discussions and throughout informal conversations throughout our cohort. We all hope the next game on March 3rd will be a victory for the team wearing a decidedly lighter shade of blue. But if not, we’re already counting down the days to our immersion weekend in San Francisco, which fortuitously coincides with the first weekend of the NCAA tournament.

March Madness – and specifically CAROLINA madness – is what the next month is all about. And though the well, the bell and the stone walls all rightly deserve their place at the top of any list of what makes UNC great, discovering a new-found love for Roy’s boys is what binds us to UNC in March.

About Ana-Laura: Ana-Laura Diaz is currently a practicing attorney living in the South Florida area. After attending UNC-Chapel Hill as an undergraduate, she received her J.D. from the University of Miami. Her love for all things Carolina and the desire to expand her horizons led her to the new MBA@UNC program, where she looks forward to continuing to be “Tar Heel bred.”