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Afeefah K. '21

Aug 15 2018

H I C C U P S

Posted in: Miscellaneous

A few Fridays ago, I sat down (as I normally do at the end of a long and tiring week) to watch a Bollywood film. All I was really looking for was a good-old three hours of minimal brain activity and the occasional musical sequence. When my younger brother hit the play button, I was already half-asleep. It’s been a while since a movie has kept me up past my internally strict bedtime. It’s been even longer since a movie has lingered with me past a good night’s sleep. Hichki (which roughly translates to hiccup in English), however, has had me scrambled in thoughts for days now. And as I’ve navigated my way through those dangerous waters, I like to think I’ve approached something meaningful.

(might want to turn on english subtitles for this)

In short, the film follows Naina Mathur, an aspiring teacher with some pretty heavy baggage: Tourette syndrome. A nervous system disorder in nature, Tourette’s causes her to make uncontrollable noises and movement. For a career as... read the post »

Discussion

Aug 13 2018

8,726,400 SOS: The Conscious Subconscious

Posted in: Academics & Research, Life & Culture

*written by a '21 as a part of the 8,726,400 Seconds of Summer guest post series*


After finishing my freshmen year, I followed the common path of UROPing on campus this summer. I lived at home (about 35 minutes on a good day) and commuted into Cambridge, resulting in the traffic survivor I am today. My UROP was in one of the biotech labs and this initiated me into the 9 to 5 world, something I thought would be easy. At the beginning of this initiating process there was a lot to get used to and a lot of conflicting feelings, now nearing the end of my UROP I have truly enjoyed my time, but it took the beginning weeks to appreciate it. Here I illustrate some of the thoughts I have felt this summer.


The Conscious Subconscious

Lab coat goggles gloves, lab coat goggles gloves,
What will I do today? I hope I don’t mess up
Ethanol, check cells, please don’t die, please don’t die
Split cells
Aspirate, don’t touch anything, stay sterile
Quick but sterile, quick, but sterile... read the post »

Discussion

Aug 6 2018

8,726,400 SOS: Got Solar?

Posted in: Miscellaneous

*written by Peter C'20 and Ashisha P'20 (members of MIT SEVT) as a part of the 8,726,400 Seconds of Summer guest post series*

We did it! Over the past three weeks, the MIT Solar Electric Vehicle Team competed at the 2018 American Solar Challenge (ASC). Our newest vehicle, Flux was tested, scrutinized, and pushed to its limits and after many stressful nights and over 1,700 miles on the Oregon trail, the finish line was crossed!

Unbelievable Scenery at Scottsbluff, NE PC: Ashisha Persad

On the afternoon of July 3rd, the team members frantically packed up every tool and potentially useful item we had in our shop at the Edgerton Center- no matter how heavy or dirty it seemed, and we began the long drive to Hastings, Nebraska, with Flux securely loaded into our trailer. Several gas station lunches and toll plazas later, we finally arrived at our destination, where we met more team members who flew in for the competition. After a few team discussions and a long night of last... read the post »

Discussion

Jul 31 2018

8,726,400 SOS: When in South Africa

Posted in: Life & Culture

*written by a '21 as a part of the 8,726,400 Seconds of Summer guest post series*

For as long as I can remember I have wanted to travel the world. I remember the days when my mom would ask 7-year-old me what I wanted to be when I grew up and I would tell her about my plans to traverse the world and help people with the amazing, affordable medical technology I would design. Flash forward 11 years and not much has changed, I still want to travel the world but am now thinking of pursuing medical school. As soon as I realized I would be coming to MIT I began to delve deeper into the possible opportunities a program like MISTI could offer. Being a hopeful Course 10Eng-Biomedical and without fluency in any other language besides English I turned to one of the better suited places to do biology and chemistry research: South Africa. After emailing a couple of professors and departments at Wits University and the University of Cape Town I found a position at the Center of Biomedical TB... read the post »

Discussion

Jul 22 2018

8,726,400 SOS: A Smile Worth 1,550 Words

Posted in: Miscellaneous

*written by Mariam D. '20 as a part of the 8,726,400 Seconds of Summer guest post series*

A few dozen children stand fidgeting in lines before us, their eyes squinting in the glare of the merciless sun. There’s a myriad of expressions on their different faces that I’m trying to decipher. Most children are excited, smiling shyly. Some have an expectant look (maybe they’ve caught a glimpse of the soccer balls). Some are simply curious. And then there are the blank stares - the heavy gazes of large eyes that have tasted a life beyond what my sheltered palate can even imagine. The solemn looks that you can’t prepare for. The looks that instinctively stop you in your tracks because it doesn’t make sense for that emptiness to be emanating from such a small human being.

We had just stepped out of the bus that had brought us from our hotel in Amman. As our shoes fell upon a dusty ground surrounding the orphanage for Syrian refugees, the children sang a welcoming song in Arabic for... read the post »

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