The Tech - Online EditionMIT's oldest and largest
newspaper & the first
newspaper published
on the web
Boston Weather: 42.0°F | Mostly Cloudy

Dorm Rush Attracts More Frosh This Year

By Dana Levine


While fraternities treated freshmen to steak and lobster dinners, MIT’s dormitories showed the freshman class that they too know how to have fun.

Rush chairs at several dormitories were impressed by the number of freshmen who showed up at the dormitories, especially on Saturday. “A surprising number of people came for tours,” said Ben Maron ’04, a Baker House rush chair. “I certainly think the turnout was decent.”

Burton-Conner House rush chair Chanelle J. Howe ’02 noticed that there were a lot of freshmen examining dormitories this year. “I think we’ve had more people this year. Yesterday I expected people to be going across the river to the fraternities, but there were a lot of people here,” she said.

Alejandro Morales ’04, a rush chair for Random Hall, also said that freshmen came to his dorm earlier this year. “We’ve been getting a lot of freshman from the start, which is unusual. We have freshman who are coming straight from kickoff, and before, and staying,” he said.

Freshmen know process better

Maron believes that freshmen decided to check out the dormitories early on during rush because they know more about the rush process. “I think that the freshmen were better organized and better prepared than I was last year. It kind of scares me,” he said.

Morales also thinks that this year’s freshman class is better informed than those in previous years. “Part of it is probably the fact that kids know what they want ahead of time, they are better informed,” he said. “A large percentage had a sense that they would like Random or some dorm on East Campus.”

Dorm rush more laid back

As dormitories do not directly invite freshmen to live with them, dorm rush is more about having fun than recruitment. “Rush is less about showing people the dorm than showing what the Bakerites are like,” Maron said.

Rachel A. Sharp ’02, a rush worker for East Campus, said that 10 percent of freshmen will end up living at East Campus, regardless of their rush performance. “We just do what we like, and hang out,” she said. “I like to make food.” Sharp worked in the kitchen this weekend preparing $4000 worth of rush food.

Baker has planned several informal events for the coming days, including an “unhappy happy hour” on the roofdeck, karaoke, and small barbeques. Random has planned events which include a game of Jenga played with pieces of 2x4 foot lumber.

Sharp said that East Campus had a $20,000 rush budget this year. “We had a big surplus. We have over 400 people in our dorm, so we had a huge budget,” she said. “This seemed like a good time to have a four-day party.”

East and west square off

Yesterday also featured a large water fight between West and East Campus dormitories. “It started from a fight that I had with the Senior House rush chair. We decided to settle it on the playing field,” Maron said.

According to Ankur M. Mehta ’03, Baker was doing quite well until members of East Campus, Random Hall, and the Tau Epsilon Phi fraternity joined the fight. The combined forces quickly forced Baker to make a hasty retreat.

“East Campus reamed West Campus,” said Charisse L. Massay ’03, a Senior House resident. According to Massay, the victors marched around campus chanting “Water makes the grass grow. Kill! Kill! Kill!” after winning the fight.

Bexley chooses not to rush

As usual, Bexley elected to participate in “anti-rush,” a series of activities designed to scare away prospective members. One tactic involved spraying water out of a window and onto any freshmen who entered or left the dorm.

Jenny A. Lichter ’05 said that “there was some vaseline on some railways.” In addition, she said that her suite mate heard some loud pornography.

Lichter is not currently considering Bexley, and plans to move to Burton-Conner. “I think that I want to be in a more social environment,” she said.