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R/O a time to explore opportunites

Residence/Orientation (R/O) Week has been called everything from fast-paced, high-pressured, and overwhelming to "the most fun I've ever had." This ten-day period before classes begin is designed to introduce new students (both freshmen and transfers) to MIT. It allows them to choose their housing and classes -- things that are often simply assigned during the summer at other schools. New students also have the opportunity to join student activities and athletic teams, and to explore MIT and the Boston-Cambridge area.

Accomplishing all of this in so short a time requires exchanging a lot of information. During the summer most new students are swamped with mail from MIT living groups, activities, and especially the Office of the Dean for Student Affairs. This inundation, however, pales in comparison to the amount of advice the new students get from upperclassmen and other "helpful" people in the community. The sheer volume of information and advice is often confusing, and important pieces are frequently missed.

The R/O Committee, a group of approximately 40 students, plans Institute R/O during the summer with the goal of helping each new student make the most of R/O week. Toward this end, the committee has thought of a number of suggestions for new students to help ease their transition into MIT.

And so, freshmen and transfers, in preparation for this coming transition, we offer some advice: you are about to enter a short period of time during which you will make decisions which will affect the rest of your life. Be yourself! This will go a long way in helping you find your niche at MIT. As you will soon find out, you will get a lot of contradictory information, so take everything (including this column) with a grain of salt.

Be open-minded. Do not be afraid to try something different. Students from Haw