What to Expect in Your First 2 Weeks at CIMBA

Written by Connery September 30, 2015

The Return of the Gratified Truck!

LIFE Team #1064

Decision Analysis, you'll actually, probably, enjoy it

Street Magic in Milan

Milan Cathedral: One of the biggest buildings I've ever seen.

Did I mention the Cathedral was huge?

If it isn’t obvious by now, CIMBA is in a league of its own when it comes to a study abroad experience. Whether it’s due to the location, the curriculum, or even by its strict policy on class attendance, CIMBA is something else. What you will go through in the first 2 weeks alone will change your perception on teamwork and on who you are. I don’t want to spoil what you will do, but I will give as much information as I can.

The Da Vinci Challenge: I was part of Group B, and we did the Da Vince Challenge during the first week. What the Da Vince Challenge is about is the physical side of teamwork. The first half of it, we spent trying to lift our entire group with each other, all while not moving our feet. Easy in theory, but once implemented, it took quite a long time to finally figure out how to do it correctly.  The second half was my personal favorite. We began our “Ropes Course” as every called it, but in actuality, it was trust falls, team wall climbs and other things. Overall a great experience, and a great way to get to know everyone in Group B before we began LIFE.

CIMBA Advantage Program (CAP): It’s in the name, CIMBA Advantage Program, need I say more? While I won’t give everything away, I will point out that you will learn many decision-making techniques that I found to be very beneficial. My favorite was Decision-analysis, where you have everything scaled by importance and then see what scores higher. After some math, you will add all the numbers up and make a decision. Overall a great segment on decisions and how to tackle them.

LIFE: If there is one thing that separates CIMBA from EVERY other study abroad program, it would be LIFE. I won’t put it gently, you will run on almost no sleep that entire 2.5 day experience, withstand massive amounts of stress, and you will really need to dig deep on figuring out how much you want it. During this time you will learn how much of a team you’ve been apart of, what it feels like to really succeed, how much those in your group are there for you, and have an appreciation for what the trainers can to help you. LIFE is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and you will leave it as a new person.

The Second Weekend: This is the first time you will be able to travel for more than 1 day, and the first taste of “freedom” you will have in the first 2 weeks. Many students pick this time to go around Italy, myself included. This is the first weekend you will be outside of the general area, so make sure you make the most of it. Just make sure your hostel room is booked, and you arrive at your train station early enough for changes. We had some mishaps with our hostel, and it really dragged down the weekend. Not a pleasant stay…

Overall, CIMBA is a completely different experience, especially the first 2 weeks. The 2 weeks will really test you, and push you beyond your comfort zone, but can and will do it. It will give you many life changing and enriching experiences and you will learn so much. 

“You will either step forward into growth, or you will step backward into safety.” – Abraham Maslow