Chris Peterson SM '13
Apr 17 2017
Today is the 121st Boston Marathon, the oldest, and most famous, marathon in the world. The race begins at 10AM in Hopkinton, a suburb of Boston, and winds 26.2 miles through Ashland, Framingham, Natick, Wellesley, Newton, Brookline, and finally Boston, where the freshly-painted finish line welcomes runners home, under the protective wing of the Boston Public Library, and in the company of all those who ran before and with them.
Today, I'll also be watching, rather than running, the Marathon, for the first time since 2013, when the Tsarnaev brothers killed my friend Martin, and later MIT Police Officer Sean Collier. Regular readers of this blog may recall my post, last April, about MIT and the Marathon, and what each taught me about the other. One hard lesson I've learned, as a described in that post, that it's possible to overtrain both body and mind to the point where either/both get injured. That's what happened to me: overuse injuries in my knees and hips that never... read the post »
Apr 3 2017
In January, President Trump signed Executive Order 13769, or "travel ban," which, among other things, suspended entry to the United States for residents of certain countries. This past weekend, a group of universities including MIT filed an amicus brief in federal court opposing the travel ban. The brief argues that international students and faculty, including (but not limited to) those from the countries affected by the ban, contribute to our campus and the world afterward, and that the travel ban harms students, faculty, scholars, and universities.
Since January, when the order was signed, we have heard many questions from prospective international students. Some of these questions have come from citizens of the countries covered by the ban; others have come from international students from countries not (yet) affected by the ban, but who worry about anti-international sentiment and are reconsidering their decision to apply to universities in America (according to one recent... read the post »
Mar 14 2017
MIT Regular Action admissions decisions for the Class of 2021 are now available at
You can log in using the same username and password that you use to log in to your MyMIT account. There are no interim screens, so you should be sure you are ready to receive your decision online before logging in to decisions.mit.edu.
Between Early and Regular Action, 20,247 students applied to join the MIT Class of 2021. As of today (inclusive of Early Action), we have offered admission to 1,438 students.
These 1,438 students are truly exceptional. The admitted Class of 2021 includes musicians and mathematicians, farmhands and physicists, rocketeers and raconteurs, from Albania to Zambia and everywhere in between. Individually they represent more than 60 countries and 1,000 high schools; together, they constitute an incredible community, each contributing a set of rare skills and perspectives while holding in common the highest caliber of... read the post »
Feb 24 2017
MIT senior Lilly Chin just won the College Jeopardy championships! And she was ahead by so much at the end that this was her final Jeopardy answer:
I have been privileged to know and befriend some of the best and brightest minds in America and around the world. But right now, I don't think I've ever been prouder to be an MIT Admissions officer.
CONGRATS LILLY YOU ARE THE GREATEST OF ALL TIME. WE ALL LOVE YOU LOTS.
edit: more Lilly content posted this morning includes this MIT News article about her win and a great interview, posted by Jeopardy, and featuring Lilly as she sat in her extremely tricked out dorm room on Tetazoo in East Campus:
also, some Lilly Reaction GIFs from the r/Jeopardy subreddit
Also, it is Because Of Lilly that MIT suddenly had a custom snapchat filter activated on campus last night:
I think one of the bloggers who knows Lilly is going to do a longer interview of her with lots of good questions... read the post »
Feb 16 2017
Early this morning I got a text from my friend and former student Jeremy R. '16 with a link to a new McDonald's commercial for their new Suction Tube for Reverse Axial Withdrawal, or STRAW. It's a clear send-up of Jony Ive's breathless product launches, complete with pictures of prototyping sessions and fluid analyses with subtitles like "real engineers, doing real engineer stuff." Jeremy instructed me to look a bit after a minute into the video. I generally listen to Jeremy, so I did.
That's when I saw it.
Can you see it?
That is, of course, an MIT class ring, or so-called brass rat, a touchstone of MIT culture with a long and illustrious history. They're easily recognizable and are sometimes even used intentionally in media as a sort of wink-and-a-nod that a character attended MIT, perhaps most famously, as Matt once... read the post »