I messed up last Wed. Felt terrible. After sending the apology email, finally find peace…

Hi, S,

I apologize for impatience on Wednesday. The confusion is caused by poorly written English (I should have doubled checked before posting the problem), not the logic itself. I have reworded the problem (attached). In particular,

“Suppose that the number of new firms created in each year is the same as the number of firms that default in the last year.”

I hope this makes more sense now. If you still have questions, please let me know.

Thank you for the detailed suggestions. In particular, the idea that asking students to present solution ideas before the class is a very good point. I will try it in the future classes.

You may also notice that not all students are as willing or smart as you are. Some just want  a passing grade. In fact, the current content is only about 2/3 of what I covered before (using MATLAB, not Excel). That year the enrollment dropped from 50 to 8 within 3 weeks, and the school was not happy, threatening to cancel the class. They insisted that this is a MBA course, as such, I must cut the theoretical content, and focus on applications and Excel. Even with all the above compromises, this class still struggles, year after year, to attract enough students: they still complain it’s too hard.

In the past, those who were unsatisfied with MBA level education went on with PHD studies. That is the level you may consider.

Again, I am really sorry for losing patience. It won’t happen again. I hope you enjoy the rest of the class, and you are always welcome to my office hours.



2016-05-02 10.04.17

B125: hang on there

Dear All,

Learning Excel is like doing exercise. Exercise works on our physical muscle; Excel works on our brain muscle. The more we do it, the better we get, the more we love it.

In B125, we build our Excel and logic thinking ability through intense, deliberate practice. As to build any real skill, it takes efforts and patience. But as long as we keep pushing our limits, we will get there eventually.

2016-04-25 12.47.59


The army of diversity bureaucrats in US higher education is a strong signal of its decline. I am all for social justice and compassion. But that should be kept within proper limit. When it blows out of proportion, it discourages hardworking, undermines fairness, worse, it erodes the very foundation of American dream—meritocracy.

Here is a recent example that gets my nerve:


ME: If we really value excellence, we would not dilute it. We single it out.

When a candidate cannot stand on merit alone, and has to be justified on the diversity ground, well, that is quite telling of his/her true caliber.


R: “For the stage of her career (early associate) she has a solid record of publication.  Her seminar presentation was very good although I had several questions about the assumptions she made in the model.  Still, the analysis seems to have been done carefully and competently.   Her teaching evaluations are very good and she will contribute to our gender diversity at the school.  She does not quite fit the bill of being an established scholar(although in the ad we say we will consider tenured associate.   Still, I see her contribution to our school as the highest among the 3 candidates and I rank her first.”

2016-05-02 11.29.57