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Here I am, less than a month from starting what will arguably be the best four years of my life. Am I incredibly excited? Scared? Still half-convinced that I was perhaps admitted by mistake?

Yes, yes, and yes!

I’m holding on tightly to these precious last days of summer. Knowing that this may very well be my last summer to myself, I have chosen to deliberately forgo internships. Instead, I’ve created a summer bucket list and am slowly but surely going through it. With items like fly a kite, fill a sketchbook, and visit the zoo, my list is probably as far from lab work as you can get. Nonetheless, I am eager to UROP once school starts.

In many ways, my path to MIT began three years ago when my interest in science sparked for the first time. For the first 14 years of my life, I had always thought of myself as a humanities girl. I attended a magnet humanities program in middle school, and a liberal arts IB program in high school. English and history were my favorites.

But when given the option of an elective sophomore year, I chose an additional science class: anatomy and physiology. For half of high school, I wanted to be a doctor. I almost didn’t sign up for the class, though. Cat dissections? No, thank you. After that class (and only partially getting over my fear), I didn’t hesitate to pile on the science classes. Even though I no longer wanted to be a doctor, I realized that science was fun! By the time I graduated, I had taken eight science classes while fulfilling the requirements to obtain an IB diploma. Now that high school is behind me, I’m facing my future with high hopes.

I’m thrilled to be attending MIT. I first visited the summer before my senior year. I quickly fell in love with the math and science puns in the hallway flyers; the engaging admissions officers and modern campus (no ivy here) sealed the deal. I may not have endured the cold, harsh winters in the Northeast yet, but Boston sure put on a pretty face in the summer.

Like many prefrosh, I thought CPW was the epitome of all things awesome about MIT. While I know CPW was a little white lie, it was a one-of-a-kind experience that I’m glad to have had. I couldn’t believe the number of activities going on at one time, as well as the rampant amounts of free food. Forget the freshman 15, I was going to put on weight from CPW alone.

My first look at a MIT dorm, East Campus, astonished me. MIT was even cooler than expected —nerdy references were everywhere! From the walls to the ceilings, the freedom to express spoke volumes about MIT. Having to return to a slew of make-up work and tests back home in Maryland was slightly disheartening. Yet, the enthusiasm I acquired at CPW has stayed with me throughout the summer.

Periodical mailings and paperwork requests have ensured that MIT is never far from my mind. I greatly enjoyed Burton Conner’s i3 video this year and found myself humming to the cover of “Just a Friend” long after I ranked my housing preferences. Housing lottery results came out at the end of July; I am temped in New House.

As for freshman learning communities, I lotteried into ESG at the beginning of summer. I chose ESG because of the small classes that are the hallmark of the program. I am determined to go out of my comfort zone in college, and becoming an active learner in the classroom offers exactly that. (The lizard tattoos given out at CPW also helped.)

I’m now waiting with bated breath for my final lottery results — the HASS-D lottery. With 24.900 (Intro to Linguistics) as my first choice and 21H.001 (How to Stage a Revolution) as my second, I’m crossing my fingers, but expecting the worst.

I’ll arrive on MIT’s campus on Aug. 21 for my FPOP. I hope the coming years will be remembered with the utmost fondness, even if there’s a touch of masochism in there.

So here I am, MIT. I’m as ready as I’ll ever be.