MIT Admissions

Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Chris Peterson SM '13

Jul 18 2017

MIT: Progressions

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Earlier today, I got an email from Kenny Friedman '17, who took my course last fall. Long story short: while researching some old media appearances of Professor Chomsky, Kenny, with the help of the MIT Museum, unearthed a lost (literally: it had been misnamed and misfiled) MIT Admissions recruitment video from 1969 called MIT: Progressions.  


I'd seen (and we've postedMIT: The Movie (1992), which was (unbelievably) still used on fall travel recruitment well into the aughts. There's an even older silent movie called Technology (1934) that was sent by reel across the country to help prospectives understand the place. 

But what's amazing to me is the salience and relevance of this film. The student activism of 1968-1969 — against the Vietnam War, against nuclear armament, for civil rights — was arguably the single most politically active moment in the Institute's history before today. In this video we see antiwar protests (led by Chomsky) outside Stratton, students... read the post »


Jul 1 2017

Be A Blogger 2017!

Posted in: Miscellaneous

It's summer in Cambridge, which means three things:

1) A ten year old girl at nerd camp yelled at me for being part of the globalist illuminati responsible for the common core 

2) I'm trying to learn to spin dragon staff 

3) It's time for those of you who might want to be bloggers to let your dreams TAKE FLIGHT

What does it mean to be an admissions blogger? 

The mission of the blogs is to help prospective students understand what MIT is like.  
Admissions officers can write about holistic admissions authentically, but we can’t write about what it’s like to live in Conner 2, or plan stuff for REX, or UROP, or decide how to pick your classes, or a really cool new thing you learned today in class, and so forth. MIT operates by setting a very high standard of admission to the academic enterprise and then offering those who clear the bar substantial creative autonomy to independently pursue whatever they think is interesting and worthwhile; the blogs are a specific... read the post »


Jun 19 2017

Aliens, Bitcoin, Camps

Posted in: Miscellaneous

The blogs have been pretty quiet for the last week. Most of our bloggers are home, with some recently graduated, or have just begun work and UROPs. Meanwhile, the admissions team has been attending conferences, picking up long-dormant projects, and starting new initiatives.

I'm currently at nerd camp, but anytime the blogs go unblogged for too long, I get antsy, so I wanted to make a quick post and point your attention at two things. 

First: some of you may follow alien/human (and MIT PhD student) @jonnysun on Twitter. If you don't, you should; his persona, and associated art projects (like @tinycarebot), are earnest, lovely things in the world. Jonny was also just profiled in the New York Times on the occasion of the publication of his new book (!!!), Everyone's a Aliebn When Ur a Aliebn Too: A Book

everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too is the illustrated story of a lonely alien sent to observe Earth, only to meet all sorts of creatures with all sorts of perspectives on... read the post »


Jun 9 2017

The Class of 2017 Graduates from MIT

Posted in: Miscellaneous

livestream of the graduation ceremonies


Today occasions the 151st Commencement of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Over the next few hours of pomp, circumstance, and Tim Cook, 2,988 students will become graduates, turn their rat around, and join the global nerd illuminati far-flung family of MIT alumni. 


Of particular interest to our office are the Class of 2017 undergraduates, whom we admitted, in the main, four years ago. In the intervening years, we, as MIT staff, have come to know and work with so many of them, like our bloggers Vincent and Krystal, our student workers and tour guides, and, in my case, the students who took my classes. We have had the chance to see them strive and struggle, and to become the people we knew they were capable of becoming all those years ago when we read their applications. 

We are very proud of them. 



May 30 2017

West Coast Trip Report

Posted in: Miscellaneous

I'm back in Boston and absurdly jetlagged. I promised, though, that I would post updates from my West Coast trip after I returned, so, here is my trip report, with 100% more screaming toilets than I had anticipated. [ASK] me about traveling for 2.5 weeks in two carry-on bags. 

May 13-14: Bae-Area Bloggers

I'll arrive this afternoon, try to grab a quick coffee with CMS/Civic classmate Rodrigo, who now runs product at Neighborly, before heading over to a celebration dinner for Jess K. '10 graduating from med school.


My flight was delayed due to ongoing construction at SFO so I couldn't connect with Rodrigo. I did, however, make Dr. Kim's graduation dinner.



Tomorrow, I'll drive down to South Bay and work out at Stanford


h a c k e d


then stop by the Stupid Shit No One Needs And Terrible Ideas Hackathon to hang out with Rachel F. '12 and Danny B.D. '15 before flying to LAX that night.


Not only did I get to do this, but I got to see Danny and... read the post »