GSBC’s 70th Annual School Session offered a first: the option to attend school virtually. This flexibility afforded students the ability to choose an option that made them most comfortable, meet their company’s travel policies or ease stress on their family, among many other reasons. For third year students, this meant one main thing: attending their final year of GSBC from home.
The 2021 session helped us learn how, as Bank Management Simulation (BMS) faculty members, to develop relationships with students virtually. Of the many things that we learned; these topped the list:
- Never underestimate the desire of people wanting to learn and grow. Where there’s a will, there’s a way—and GSBC provided the way.
- People want to connect. Relationships can be built online. It might not be the same, but humans will do what humans do best: connect with their peers.
- The GSBC network is passionate about the school’s mission. There were a lot of obstacles to overcome to make this year’s session happen. Alumni, faculty, trustees and staff were determined to provide the GSBC experience regardless of one’s attendance choice.
The COVID-19 pandemic has illustrated the resiliency of humans and our ability to adapt. It was an honor to watch the students build relationships virtually. As instructors, popping into a breakout room and hearing third year students joke, laugh and troubleshoot their bank simulation decisions was incredible. GSBC’s first ever class to graduate virtually began their journey as the class of 2020 and ended as a stronger, more capable and well-rounded class of 2021.
Congratulations to the entire class of 2021. You should be proud of yourselves, and we look forward to watching you shine! Welcome to the GSBC network.
-Michelle ‘17 and Perry ’08
GSBC graduated 141 total students as part of its class of 2021, 40 of whom attended and graduated virtually. Perry Haralson and Michelle Hodge were the faculty members who instructed the 40 virtual graduates in their capstone third-year course, a Bank Management Simulation. GSBC held a hybrid graduation ceremony on Thursday, July 29, 2021, in Boulder, CO, incorporating the virtual graduates (watch the graduation livestream).