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The traveling roll of TP

One of the consistencies of Russia is the TP. It has a sandpaper like quality but comes in a variety of pastel colors, that I suppose are meant to distract from the rough texture. About halfway through the week we spent a morning at the Proctor & Gamble house. It was, of course, filled with the P&G products we have become familiar with over the years, many imported from the US as they are not currently available in Russia. One of these products was Charmin TP. It was a nice surprise to use and it wasn’t really until that visit that I realized what I’d become used to having available. A funny thing started to happen throughout the second half of our visit. The Charmin TP started appearing in odd locations. The first place I noticed it was the restrooms at USA house. It was there inconsistently but still there. The second was a restroom in the Olympic Park, portable but it had Charmin. I asked others who hadn’t seen it, but I definitely had. I also saw it in a restroom at the Luge venue in the Mountain cluster. I wondered if it was the athletes spreading it around, as they were the primary visitors of the P&G house, but other options include that it could have been the P&G strategy to initiate some small product demand, but it seems very haphazard for that to be the case. Something more integrated like providing all the TP for both clusters, is more likely to be an implementation the would be selected by an multinational company. I like to think it was the athletes or individuals spreading some softness.

Fiona Saunders

Posted by gwsb on March 9, 2014 | Filed under: Olympics.

Russian taxis, the Extreme Park and venue food

Arrived in Sochi, February 6, 2014 After 30 hours of travel I’m shattered. Getting a taxi was easy in Sochi. It was amazing that at 1 am the line of taxi drivers at arrivals was three deep. Found a driver and negotiated a price. We even determined that he knew where our guest house was. Unfortunately, the drivers work in pairs. Though the first driver said he knew where I was going, either his explanation to the second driver was flawed, or some other reason, but I ended up driving around the area where my guest house is for more than an hour. After finally arriving and having to climb a fence to get into my guest house due to a locked gate, I climber into bed at 2am. The alarm went off at 7:30 and Professor Nierotti took us up to the Extreme Park in the mountain cluster for the Snowboard Slopestyle event. It was a great day watching the first round of this event. There had been stories in the news about the quality of the course and where there was a risk to the athletes. In the end Shawn White pulled out but it was still a great event. It is funny how the organizers have chose to make the mountain cluster feel like a winter event location. There has not been snow since early January, but the walking paths all have snow on them! clearly from the snow making equipment. The other spectators all seem very happy. They are happy to cue up to wait for busses or food. We waited an hour to get lunch from the food vendors. Very American hot dogs or pancakes and coffee, but not with milk. Wo also accomplished a bunch of logistics including getting spectator passes and other Olympic accreditations.

Posted by gwsb on March 9, 2014 | Filed under: Olympics.

Free transportation during Sochi Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games

Sochi Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games come with free of charge transportation services for holders of spectator pass, tickets, volunteers and other accredited individuals. Free commuter train services along the Sochi Airport – Sochi – Adler- Krasnaya Polyana -Olympic Park routes were provided between February 6-February 23 and free transportation services were extended until the end of Paralympic Games.

In addition to high-speed trains, holders of the passes can use accredited busses with the logo. Buss routes include not only services along Sochi Airport – Sochi – Adler- Krasnaya Polyana -Olympic Park but also stop near Live Sites and other hotel zones.

Handicapped individuals, families with kids less than three years of age and pregnant women can use additional services that include transportation to the sport venues by using golf carts (Coastal Cluster) and vans (Mountain Cluster).

By Kristina Kaminskaya






Posted by gwsb on March 4, 2014 | Filed under: Olympics.

Russian Culture All the Way to Closing Ceremony

Closing Ceremony In Sochi Winter Olympic Games was amazing. It was a grand finale after more than 2-weeks of tough competitions. Russians took an opportunity to present its rich culture and history to about 40,000 people inside the Fisht stadium. The closing ceremony included Russian writers and painters from 18th to 19th century, a famous conductor Valery Gergiev with children’s choir hailing from 83 different Russian regions, and a piano player Denis Matsuev with 62 musicians manning pianos to play a tribute of Sergey Rachmaninov. During the fantastic dance to the Rachmaninov music 62 pianos were circling in various positions (as you can see on the photos). During presentation of Russian writers pages of the books were changing along with Russian portraits. Stadium background was also changing with famous paintings. It was more than just a presentation of the rich history and culture; it was a story with a happy celebration!

by Kristina Kaminskaya

Posted by gwsb on March 4, 2014 | Filed under: Olympics.

What a nice gift for hard work!

The government supported each athlete not only financially prior to the games but also after the games were over. At Sochi Winter Olympics Russia had its biggest medal count, 33 total medals out of which 13 golds. Each medal came with a cash prize where gold medalists received $120,000, silver $76,000 and bronze medalists got $52,000.

In addition, Russian athletes who won gold at Sochi Winter Olympics have each been rewarded with a Mercedes Benz GL class. Silver medalists took home a Mercedes GLK class and bronze medalists were given the keys to Mercedes ML class. The white Mercedes Benz cars were decorated with the Russian team logo. A driver was given, with all services paid, to an athlete that was under 18 years of age. The cars were provided by a not-for profit organization that was set up by a group of businessman prior to London Olympic Games.


By Kristina Kaminskaya

Posted by gwsb on March 4, 2014 | Filed under: Olympics.

Day 3: CAS, Ski Jumping, Party at South Korea, Holland House and SAGE! – SP

We were all over the Sochi area today and met with so many people today it’s hard to remember everything we did so I’m going list it out.

  •  We met with a member of CAS who is responsible for arbitrating issues that may arise during the games. They are an unbiased group that athletes can turn to that is not a part of the IOC or federations. It was really interesting to hear his story.
  •  Next, we made our way over to meet with DeeDee who is responsible for bringing women’s ski jumping to the Sochi 2014 Winter Games. I had no idea women were not able to jump and hearing her story was truly inspirational. She fought so hard for 8 years and was repeatedly rejected before finally winning and getting the sport added. She was also the major at the time of the Salt Lake City bid when they won the bid for the 2002 Winter Games.
  •  We went to a VIP event for the PyeongChang 2018 Games. It was amazing!! All of the IOC big shots were there and the president got up to speak. As we walked through the door, we were greeted with an awesome scarf and glasses upon glasses of wine. As soon as Gangnam style came on, everyone was dancing and having a blast!!! This event was by far one of the coolest things we’ve done so far on the trip.

photo 1

  • Afterwards, we went to the Japan House to hear Mr. Mizuno who is the CEO of Mizuno (my favorite running shoes) and responsible for helping with the 2020 Tokyo bid. He explained to us that it is more important what happens after the Games (legacy you leave behind). Tokyo put in a bid for the 2016 Games and lost to Rio. He explained to us the six elements Tokyo focused on when they revamped their bid for the 2020 Games. The six elements were the following: Plan of the Games, Support of the People, International/Domestic Communication and Promotional Activities, Evaluation Commission, Presentation and Lobbying. After our lecture, I of course had to track Mr. Mizuno down and get a picture. I am such a huge fan!!

photo 2

After we finished with the day’s lectures, a group of us headed to the Holland House. Kelly and I had tickets for the evening and a few others were going to try to pick up tickets there (note: the Holland House sells out very quickly…and they do NOT sell tickets at the door!). After my first experience at the Holland House, all I can say is that the Dutch know how to party!! I felt like I was swimming in a sea of orange. So much nationalism, confetti, glow sticks and music!

photo 3












Because some of our friends couldn’t get in, Kelly and I only stayed for a few hours. We met back up with the guys in the hotel bar. After a few minutes of hanging out at the bar we overhead a few girls mention that Sage Kostenburg had just checked in to the hotel. Immediately, Kelly and I ran over and saw him walking away from the check-in desk. We call out his name, he turns around, and we ask (more like beg) for a picture with him. He was SO nice, and asked us if we wanted to hold his GOLD MEDAL! We of course said yes….BEST NIGHT EVER!!!!!!

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-Shannon Paschal

Posted by gwsb on February 23, 2014 | Filed under: Olympics.

Thank you!


rings-smallAs I sit and watch the closing ceremonies on my iPad I miss the crew I traveled with for 10 days. Not only did I learn more in 10 days about the Olympics than I ever thought I could, I met some wonderful people, from the GWU travel party and from just talking to people at the games. This is what I love about the Olympics meeting people and learning about their story and their country. The sports competition was as promised compelling. The educational value of the class was beyond expectations.  I am really sad to see the Olympics ending but Sochi did a great job and I am very excited for 2018. Thank you Sochi and Thank you GWU for offering a class where you can learn so much this was a class I will never forget and will be talking about for years to come. Four winter Olympics down only time will tell how many more I travel too but I hope it is a lot more!

 –Megan Collins


Posted by gwsb on February 23, 2014 | Filed under: Olympics.

Olympic Park has humor

What a wonderful time you can have in the Olympic Park. You don’t have to have a ticket to the event to enjoy Olympic atmosphere. Most of the fan houses except for Team USA, P&G and Canada houses are open. At homes you can dive in into the culture and other developments of the hosting region or country. In addition to the homes, there are concerts throughout the park that represent a very rich Russian culture from 70 regions. Between concerts there are humorous clowns and other artistic groups that just bring smiles and happiness.

~Kristina Kaminskaya

Posted by gwsb on February 21, 2014 | Filed under: Olympics.

MBA Admissions and Experience Blog

The members of the MBA Admissions team contribute to the blog with postings about recruitment tours, events, interviews with current students, and insights about the admissions process. The team is composed of:

Christopher Storer, Executive Director
Jason Garner, Associate Director
Patsy Torres, Assistant Director
Jason Smith, Assistant Director
Shelly Heinrich, Admissions Consultant
Jessica Page, Coordinator