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Elijah T. '11

Jun 9 2011

Full Steam Ahead

Posted in: Academics & Research

On Sunday night, I sat alone on a bench in South Station holding what was literally and – perhaps more importantly – figuratively a one-way ticket home. There was a semblance of relief, knowing that years of toiling away at problem sets, preparing for exams, and pulling all-nighters had finally moved from the present to the past. But, for some reason, this wasn’t what I imagined my final moments in Boston feeling like. I expected there to be more elation, more joy, and more optimism as I looked toward the beginning of the rest of my life. But, in reality, there was none of that, as instead I felt sorrow that the good times and the friends I left behind won’t be returning in September.

At the start of May, the end of my undergraduate career couldn’t have come fast enough. The last two weeks of term were spent in a pressure cooker, as presentation followed project, and project followed paper. But the moment did eventually come; at precisely 3:23pm on Thursday, May 12, my work at MIT... read the post »

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Apr 19 2011

Marathon Monday

Posted in: Life & Culture

Yesterday was the third Monday in April, meaning it’s Patriots’ Day (a holiday celebrated almost exclusively in Massachusetts and Maine). The third day in a four-day weekend, it also marks what has been a Boston tradition – 115 years running (no pun intended). Of course, I’m referring to the Boston Marathon (won by Kenyan runner Geoffrey Mutai in record time). A number of MIT students run each year, but even for those (like myself) who don’t know anyone participating, there’s quite the celebratory atmosphere.

I made my way from North Station to Kenmore Square around 11:20 am; thanks to the number of spectators heading that direction on the T, it took 45 minutes to go (compared to the usual twenty minutes). Despite the extremely packed state on the trains, Kenmore Square is a nice place to watch the marathon because there’s so much space and it’s not actually packed there.

One of our fraternities, Phi Sig, hosts a Marathon Day party every year at their house, which is located along... read the post »

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Apr 1 2011

A Night at the Office

Posted in: Best of the Blogs, Life & Culture

As a news editor for The Tech, every couple weeks, I have the pleasure of spending a Monday night or Thursday night in the newspaper's office in the Student Center. Last night was one of those nights; let me guide you through the laborious process:

6:19pm: I arrive at the Tech office twenty minutes late; articles are nominally due at 6pm, so it would make sense that I should be there. That often doesn't happen, as you will gradually see here.

6:30pm: Those in the office dig into the bi-weekly offering of free food; even though the food (wings!) has been in the office for quite some time, so people know when to show up in the office, no one is permitted to touch it until exactly 6:30pm.

7:06pm: The first draft of the article of the night – on McCormick transfers – is finished.

7:28pm: It's tough when writers have to balance their articles with their problem sets. In light of that, one of our writers (Rebecca '14) asks, “When's the latest I can get my article to you?", to... read the post »

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Mar 8 2011

The Great Debate

Posted in: Life & Culture

Last week, six of MIT’s most illustrious professors gathered in 26-100 in a quest to solve one of the greatest conundrums of our time: latke or hamentaschen?

The latke and the hamentaschen are both Jewish foods that have long divided the world, being the source of almost every battle, economic downturn, and cataclysmic natural event (including the extinction of the dinosaurs). After fighting two world wars over it, in 1946, the scientific community convened for the first time at the University of Chicago to debate each foods' merits. Since then, the tradition has spread to other universities around the country, including MIT, which hosts the event every March between the two holidays the latke and hamentaschen represent.

The latke, essentially a potato pancake, is traditionally eaten during Hanukah, in November or December, while the hamentash, a fruit-filled triangular delicacy, is associated with Purim, which is in February or March (this year, it begins at sundown on March 19).... read the post »

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Feb 28 2011

Final Forty-Five

Posted in: Academics & Research

Add Date -- the last date on which you can add a class -- is this Friday, so I thought it'd be an opportune time to discuss the classes I’m taking this term.

I’m taking a total of 45 credits, the fewest credits I’ve ever taken at MIT. Part of the reason for that is that one of my classes (1.013) has a four-hour lab 12-4pm on Wednesday, which blocks out a lot of other classes. For that reason, 21F.702 (Spanish II) and 14.02 (Macroeconomics), two candidates for a fifth class, were not truly feasible. But, I’m a second semester senior! I’ll enjoy the extra time this term, even though it’ll still be less leisurely than last term, when I didn’t have class until 1pm any day of the week.

1.011 – Project Evaluation (9 credits)

Required by all Course IC students (although generally taken during junior year), the aim of this course is to provide the tools engineers need to evaluate projects and determine whether they are worthwhile and feasible (from environmental, social, and financial... read the post »

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