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750 Pre-Frosh Arrive For Campus Preview

By Pey-Hua Hwang

STAFF REPORTER

Campus Preview Weekend 2001 officially began at 9:00 a.m. yesterday morning as 750 freshmen converged on campus to get a glimpse of the MIT experience.

There was an air of anticipation in the Student Center Mezzanine Lounge, where pre-frosh gathered to pick up their registration packets. “Looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun,” said Hans Lee, a pre-frosh from Carmel, California.

“I want to go see what classes are like and get a feel of the social atmosphere of the school,” said Que Anh Nguyen, a pre-frosh from San Jose, California. Nguyen said she was enthusiastic about the shuttle from the airport and the organization of Campus Preview Weekend. “It’s really cool,” she said.

Both students said that they were looking forward to seeing some of the friends they had made through various other programs as well.

The official welcome took place in Johnson Athletic Center and featured Dean of Admissions Marilee Jones, Chancellor Lawrence S. Bacow ’72, a student panel who shared experiences at MIT, and a performance by the Logarhythms.

This year, about 54 percent of the pre-frosh are male and 46 percent are female.

CPW unites the MIT campus

Approximately 900 students committed to host pre-frosh and help with registration and the various events that will take place during CPW.

Mira E. Wilczek ’03 said that she volunteered to be a host because, “I love the [pre-frosh] and CPW is what made me come to MIT.”

Kimberly G. Chao ’04 echoed this sentiment, saying “pre-frosh are awesome! I’d like to show them how great MIT is. It’s like we’re rushing for MIT.”

The campus tours are also run by volunteers. Admissions Counselor Laura L. Sandler said “the idea is to have the guides talk about their personal experiences at MIT,” and that the pre-frosh are “here to see what the people are like.”

Though the guides were given general routes so that concurrent tours wouldn’t overlap, the guides were encouraged to improvise. “It’s pretty free form,” Sandler said.

Whirlwind of weekend activities

Whether they attend the sports and clubs their hosts are involved in, or take advantage of the multiple fraternity parties that will take place tonight and tomorrow, pre-frosh will not find much time to complain that they have nothing to do.

Director of the Laboratory for Computer Science Michael L. Dertouzos will be giving a talk about “The Unfinished Revolution: Human-Centered Computers,” and Friday night there will be a concert featuring every performing arts group at MIT with the exception of the Chamber Music Society and Concert Choir.

“This concert is a wonderful opportunity for many students ... to experience the breadth of offerings we have for performing ensembles at MIT,” said Frederick E. Harris Jr., the conductor of the MIT Wind Ensemble and Festival Jazz Ensemble, both of which will be included in Friday’s concert.

CPW also important for parents

Parents too will be visiting this weekend to evaluate the MIT experience.

“We try to keep the parents entertained,” said Associate Director of Admissions Zaragoza A Guerra III.

Director of the Parents Association Stuart Schmill said that the parents’ program was slightly more expansive this year because “we have more parent volunteers coming to help talk to prospective parents. ... They’re from all over the country.”

Schmill predicted that one of the most important things parents would want to learn about was housing because of MIT’s unique system that includes FSILGs as well as dormitories. About a quarter of the pre-frosh are being hosted in FSILGs

Mr. and Mrs. Michael Lee, Han Lee’s parents, said they were most interested in learning about “sports, the housing situation, and UROP opportunities.”

Mr. Lee, an MIT alumnus himself, thought that the campus hasn’t changed much since his years on campus. “It’s amazingly the same,” he said.

This is the third year MIT has hosted a Campus Preview Weekend open to all prospective freshmen, and it seems to be a memorable experience. Various freshmen, recollecting CPW 2000, were heard commenting, “I wish I was a pre-frosh again.”