The Heart Of Haas: A Day in the Life of a Berkeley Haas Student

Hi there! Welcome to my day. My life, just like yours, is lived in daily habits, a morning to night evolution shaped by the little things. Whether you are a high school student preparing for college or a fellow college student like me, I hope that my typical day gives you a detailed glimpse into what it means to be a business major at the Haas School. 

It all starts with a morning push. They say the super successful get up early. I dream big, but let me tell you, I am not a morning person by any standard. Regardless, I somehow negotiate myself into getting up, promising that after I brush my teeth, I can get 15 more minutes of extra sleep. This little trick I play on myself works like a charm. My brushing regimen kickstarts me into action, saving me from the swoon of my pillow. Soon, I am washing my face with a fresh Ayurvedic wash and spritzing rose water all over for that extra gleam. I take a shower and get dressed for the day, feeling confident and like myself. 

The Haas Campus

A quick breakfast is consumed – usually a shake or smoothie of some sorts –  and I pack a delicious lunch for later in the day. 

It is time for some administrative work. I open my populated inbox, as it screams my name with a flurry of advertisements, along with school- and extracurricalar-related emails. Sifting through the inbox is analogous to spring cleaning. Then, as the editor-in-chief of the Haas Undergraduate Blog, I do some full-focused editing. Our writers have refreshing opinions on topics ranging from International Business to AI in financial investing. Reading their words is a special treat in a world that is slowly straying far from slow-processed media. 

Time to be Haas-bound! I gather my things with a special note to pack gum, hand sanitizer, and a water bottle – they always come in handy, I swear. The walk to the Haas School of Business takes around 10 minutes from my house. I always catch sight of the Campanile Bell Tower on the way, and pass by various frats just doing their thing. The Haas School of Business is located near the Memorial Stadium on campus (where we have our home football games, Go Bears!). If you ever visit, make it a point to come see our Business school. It is arguably the most ‘modern’ part of campus. 

My first stop is Cafe Think, a 21st century cafe and social hub with a fresh menu. I order an iced coffee (extra sugar), and sit down. The cafe is filled with Haas students – both undergraduates and MBAs. The synergy between these two classes is pleasing to see: a young undergraduate hoping to be an entrepreneur one day can bump shoulders with an already-established startup founder and strike up a conversation. Resources are everywhere. I put on a podcast about Case Interviews and sip on my coffee, people-watching away. 

11:45 AM – STUDY TIME 
At this time, I head to N255 in Chou Hall, a room I booked earlier online. All Haas students can book study rooms that have TVs, large whiteboards, and a spacious table. These rooms have a great study environment, making the process aesthetic and productive. Today, my agenda is to review content for my UGBA 101A class – Macroeconomic Analysis for Business Decisions. We recently learned about risk tendencies, consumer behavior, and demand curves. Time to grind. I like to use the white boards sometimes to reinforce concepts in my head, particularly graphs. 

Sesame Crunch Salad

I am hungry and ready to eat up. I packed a delectable Trader Joes salad, called the “Sesame Crunch Chopped Salad Kit”, with a couple apples and a string cheese. My fingers wander to my laptop and I just so happen to find myself on Netflix. The rest, you know. 

2 PM – UGBA 101A
After a positive start to the day, it is time for class. I have the UGBA 101A class I mentioned earlier today, and I make my way to the lecture hall. Haas lecture halls, as an extension of the school, are swanky and high tech. Each seat comes with a microphone, which you have to tap before you speak in class. Professor Todd Fitch teaches with relatable analogies and a refreshing directness, including many opportunities to chat about concepts and answer questions with neighbors. For example, the other day we had a chance to discuss examples of inferior goods in the economy. This is how I end up connecting with new Haas students every single class! With a couple jokes throughout class, learning and laughter coexist. The drive of students in a Haas class is purely inspiring. Everyone is so eager and determined, it is contagious. 

After UGBA 101A, I have to attend the discussion section for my Intro to Linguistics class. Now is a good time to mention that I am double majoring in Cognitive Science, along with Business Administration. I find that the two topics blend together interestingly, since they are both grounded in human connection. Like me, many Haas students have supplementary majors or minors, and this adds to the diversity of perspective at our school. Lucky for me, this discussion is all the way across campus, so you best believe that my earphones are on full blast with some up-beat music. 

The Campanile Bell Tower

Linguistics discussion is fulfilling, and after economics, it is a nice diversion to learn about phonetics. I love to make connections in my mind about where these disparate topicalities converge. For example, Cognitive Learning Theory – the study of processes surrounding information and memory – can be applied to marketing and how to create content that resonates. Another interesting aspect of Linguistics is its diversity across the globe: each language is so unique and yet many have underlying similarities. The nuances of communication and how each sound resonates when we speak intrigue me greatly. 

News Flash: Ayushi is hungry again. It is time for an early dinner, the highlight of my day. I meet up with friends from the Global Management Program. We all studied abroad together last semester in London, and that shared experience will keep us close forever. The Berkeley Thai House is our pick for the day, with a calming ambiance and joy-inducing meals. I order Eggplant Tofu, and I pretty much inhale it soon after. We chat about how we are adjusting back to Berkeley, and recount some of our favorite memories from Europe. Berkeley has wonderful resources to help students study abroad. I highly recommend using them. 

The evening is slowly setting upon us, so it is time for some creative work. As a member of the Philanthropy Committee in the Haas Business School Association, I write, direct, and film videos to raise awareness about Haas Philanthropy. In fact, the buildings on the Haas campus I mentioned earlier, were almost all funded through donors. Today, we are filming a segment on where donations go and how they are strategically funneled. I love the artistic, practical value of such work. It is so much fun to film with people, mess up, try again, and make a beautiful final product.

I am a bit tired now, to be honest. I give myself a little internal pep talk, and watch a couple mindless, entertaining TikTok videos. I am now meeting with my Case team to work on our presentation for an upcoming PWC Case Competition. Haas has many opportunities to crystallize the Business skillet, including domestic and international case competitions. To add, it often hosts events with the top companies like PWC and helps students connect with their dream futures. 

PwC Case team (Ayushi on far right)

We work, discuss, and deliberate our strategies for the PWC Case. Each detail matters, and it is imperative to base business recommendations with both empirical data and status quo logic. Eventually, we hold a quick team meeting to discuss our food of choice and Papa Johns is ordered with a sigh of relief. When the pizza comes, the room goes dead silent…except for the loud munching. 

It is time to close the day, and I head back to my humble abode, my safe space. I feel quite safe walking back since many students are still out at this time. I call my family back home and see my dog on Facetime, a treat really. 

My head is filled with random thoughts as I chew on a Cookies and Cream Barbell Bar. 

I would hit the gym, but I am pooped out. RSF (the main gym at Berkeley), will have to see me tomorrow. I brush my teeth and change into comfy jammies. I will say adieu to a fulfilling day. I see my blazer hanging in my closet and smile at the limitless opportunities that await me.

My head hits the pillow, heavy but peaceful. My heart is full of gratitude. College life is somehow overwhelmingly chaotic and happily idealistic at the same time. With that, goodnight from Berkeley, California.

Do contact me if you need any Berkeley Recommendations, or want to learn more about the Haas School of Business, Here is a self-guided tour of the Haas campus to explore.

Ayushi Bhardwaj is a sophomore at the University of California, Berkeley (fondly known as “Cal”), where she is studying Business Administration with a Global Concentration, along with Cognitive Science. She is interested in consumer psychology and cognitive learning theory, and aims to work in startup consulting on an international scale. Ayushi dreams to fuse empathy and strategy in her life trajectory, uplifting the world with intentionality.

You can often find her editing articles for the Haas Undergraduate Blog, jotting down the random entrepreneurial ideas in her mind, listening to podcasts about ethics, snacking on quirky Trader Joe’s delicacies, or scrolling through way too many photos of her dog, Joey.


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