MIT Admissions

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Mar 14, 2009

Open Forum for Waitlisted Students

Posted in: Miscellaneous

In the near future, we'll have some advice and information here on the blogs about being waitlisted. In the meantime, feel free to use this forum to discuss anything waitlist-related.

Comments (Closed after 30 days to reduce spam)

. . .Does it explicitly say that you're waitlisted, or what? I'm rather confused.

Posted by: 0 on March 14, 2009

First! Applying next year though.

Posted by: Anon on March 14, 2009

Oh damn. Not first. Yes, it should explicitly say that.

Posted by: Anon on March 14, 2009

Couldn't you just say yes or no? Oh well better than rejection I suppose.

Posted by: Jon on March 14, 2009

does anyone know how big the waitlist is? im wondering if i even have a 0.0000314159% chance in may or june...

Posted by: TJ on March 14, 2009

@Tj
Check the blog posting about admissions -- says around 450

Posted by: Jon on March 14, 2009

It's 400- and something students. Read the first post on the Admissions Blog.

Posted by: Aditya on March 14, 2009

And the waiting continues...

Posted by: Andy on March 14, 2009

It says to complete and return the enclosed card by April 18 to stay on the Waitlist. What is this "enclosed card"? Also, thanks to MIT for considering me and giving me another chance, albeit a much smaller chance. smile

Posted by: Daniel on March 14, 2009

waitlisted 2...

Posted by: Orkhan on March 14, 2009

we still have some hope!
keep smiling smile

Posted by: Janet on March 14, 2009

Ah, well. Let's hope the decisions don't continues in this style. Good luck to everyone else here =)

Posted by: Meghan on March 14, 2009

Last year about 4.7 percent of waitlisted students were accepted, but if only 450 students were waitlisted this year, that's alot less than last year (741), so the percent might not be comprable. I guess we'll see!

Posted by: Sam on March 14, 2009

"It says to complete and return the enclosed card by April 18 to stay on the Waitlist. What is this "enclosed card"? Also, thanks to MIT for considering me and giving me another chance, albeit a much smaller chance. smile

Posted by: Daniel on March 14, 2009 02:21 PM"

Yeah, I have the exact same question.

And, I guess being waitlisted at MIT is equal to being rejected(or let's say "approximately equal" to be more precise)?

Posted by: Deeni on March 14, 2009

what is this enclosed card that they're talking about?

Posted by: tri on March 14, 2009

Well if anything, being waitlisted is really encouraging for my other admissions decisions- if MIT sees me as worthy of their waitlist, then that's a pretty good sign for the Ivies!

Posted by: Shane on March 14, 2009

"Please complete and return the enclosed card by April 18 to indicate whether or not you wish to stay on the Wait List. We will give you an update by late May."

Does Anybody here know what is this enclosed card???

Posted by: Homero on March 15, 2008 01:33 PM

@Homero

It will come in the mail on Tuesday/Wednesday.

Is anyone here not going to accept the Wait List?

Posted by: Rob on March 15, 2008 01:40 PM

Apparently it comes in the mail. =/

Posted by: Daniel on March 14, 2009

How does being on the waitlist work? How do they determine whom to offer a place first? And how can we accept a place if most colleges require we notify them of our acceptance by May 1st?

Anyway, being in the top 12.5% of MIT applicants feels pretty good, and redoubles my determination to qualify for USAMO.

Posted by: Jimmy on March 14, 2009

I think MIT and Caltech are conspiring against me... both schools deferred then waitlisted me raspberry

Posted by: Brian on March 14, 2009

Still hopeful that I'll be getting in. Fortunately, my second choice school doesn't have a seat deposit.

Hoping so much to be offered a seat. This is such a weird limbo to be in, but better than rejected I guess.

Posted by: Ilyanep on March 14, 2009

@Jimmy

Umm, please don't mind my asking, but how do you know you were in the top 12.5%?

Posted by: Deeni on March 14, 2009

I so saw this coming... that doesn't make it any less jarring. I'm grateful to be on the waitlist yet I'm not particularly optimistic. I would say "oh well" but I don't want to deny that I feel like I've been torn at the seams. I know my greatest mistake and I know it could have been easily avoided...
Uggh.

Posted by: Lora on March 14, 2009

I so saw this coming... that doesn't make it any less jarring. I'm grateful to be on the waitlist yet I'm not particularly optimistic. I would say "oh well" but I don't want to deny that I feel like I've been torn at the seams. I know my greatest mistake and I know it could have been easily avoided...
Uggh.

Posted by: Lora on March 14, 2009

I so saw this coming... that doesn't make it any less jarring. I'm grateful to be on the waitlist yet I'm not particularly optimistic. I would say "oh well" but I don't want to deny that I feel like I've been torn at the seams. I know my greatest mistake and I know it could have been easily avoided...
Uggh.

Posted by: Lora on March 14, 2009

@Deeni

~10% got in RA, ~2.5% got waitlisted RA, so the top 12.5% of RA candidates got in or waitlisted.

Posted by: Ilyanep on March 14, 2009

Waiting is horrible. I am glad though that myself and everyone here could not have been any lower than the top 13.1% of applicants (approx.) Thanks MIT for your time and consideration.

Posted by: 0 on March 14, 2009

Here's a question: Is it beneficial at all to submit any extra materials at this point, or are our application files essentially locked now?

Posted by: Ilyanep on March 14, 2009

@Deeni

Well, that statement requires giving a total ordering to the applicant pool. If you order by some quantitative measure of how much the admissions dept liked your application, then, since about 10% were accepted and 2.5% waitlisted, then I'm somewhere between the 10th and 12.5th percentiles.

Posted by: Jimmy on March 14, 2009

@3:10 Anon

You are not lower or higher than anybody. The top 30% is a random lottery. Sorry to break it to you, though.

Posted by: 0 on March 14, 2009

Sorry, meant well-ordering.

Posted by: Jimmy on March 14, 2009

@ Lora

I know what you mean by the whole "jarring" and "torn at the seams" thing. I guess, though, that we (and everyone else who's been waitlisted along with us) will have to keep remembering that at least we do still have a chance, and that MIT did like us enough to keep their finger on us, and that they apparently have an incredibly large amount of faith in our patience span and strength of character in asking us to undertake the challenge of agreeing to another few months of waiting for an actual decision, not even being certain of what it'll be.

I guess in the meantime, past mistakes or not, we'll all just have to keep proving why we deserve to be at MIT in our day-to-day in the meantime.

@ MIT (in general) - Thank you so much for at least still keeping us under consideration, and for all the opportunities to discover knowledge that you do offer to those inside and out your walls (well, metaphoric walls anyway...)

Posted by: refusing to be pessimistic on March 14, 2009

I probably will not stay on the waitlist but thanks for the offer. I feel honored not to have been outright rejected.

Posted by: 0 on March 14, 2009

I feel privileged to be wait-listed!! If MIT thinks we're not worth rejecting (yet), we're not hopeless nor worthless!! smilesmile No matter where we go, college is what we make out of it, and college don't determine our worth as a person (just as a student). Hmm.. that's the growing population for ya~

But, I still want to do everything I can. I'm *also* wondering if it would be useful for wait-listed students to send in additional updates.

Posted by: Sheryl-vi on March 14, 2009

And here's another question: How will MIT let us know if a spot opens up for us?

Also, anyone want to start a Facebook group? Those are the trendy thing to do.

Posted by: Ilyanep on March 14, 2009

How do you know what number you are on the waitlist?
And yeah.... more waiting. Man, I was really counting on a yes or no answer today (actually,I was expecting a no). This ambiguity about my near future kills me!

Posted by: wendelyn on March 14, 2009

How do you know what number you are on the waitlist?
And yeah.... more waiting. Man, I was really counting on a yes or no answer today (actually,I was expecting a no). This ambiguity about my near future kills me!

Posted by: wendelyn on March 14, 2009

Brian, r u the bco09 in cc?

Posted by: 0 on March 14, 2009

are athletic recruits given priority at this school on the waitlist? because if this is true as it is at other top schools, this would be AWESOME for me!

Posted by: peter on March 14, 2009

@wendelyn

There are no rankings. They reevaluate applicants when spots open up.

Posted by: Lora on March 14, 2009

Shoot, now I have to really start considering the other colleges I applied to. Don't know who I'd choose besides MIT...

Here's to hoping for an acceptance here in May!

p.s. any news on the postcards? Is MIT sending us a letter in addition to the online checking?

Posted by: Bennett on March 14, 2009

If you hate waiting, then dont stay on the waitlist. No need to complain...

Posted by: anon on March 14, 2009

@Anon

You're good, you should be a detective wink
...or I need to cover my tracks better

Posted by: Brian on March 14, 2009

I'm ambivalent, as I'm sure we all are. I didn't apply to many top tier schools besides MIT, so I'm quite honored that I was at least put on their Wait List. I guess if things don't end up going my way, I'll make my own path at whatever college I do end up going to.

In the mean time, let's all keep our hopes up! Oh and for those of you that want something to cheer you up (and like How I Met Your Mother as much as I do), go to barneysvideoresume.com and check out an awesome application. I think college apps should all be like this. Seriously, you'll love it.

Posted by: Troy on March 14, 2009

Hey, I made a group on facebook called "MIT Waitlist." If you want to join, here's the link:

http://www.facebook.com/groups/edit.php?officers&gid=70672495664#/group.php?gid=70672495664&ref=nf

best of luck to everyone in may!

Posted by: Marie R on March 14, 2009

@Marie R Haha thanks...I was thinking of just doing it myself

@Troy Agreed. I've been catching up on Bones today and reading fmylife.com to sort of relax.

Posted by: Ilyanep on March 14, 2009

I checked my decision on my friends blackberry when i was in a networking workshop. As soon as I logged in I immediately closed the phone after reading the first sentence. So, I thought I was rejected... but then I was pleasantly surprised that it was actually a wait list heh. I'm hoping that being a Gates scholarship finalist will boost my chances...

Posted by: David on March 14, 2009

@Troy

If only my application had been like that...I would have gotten in for sure.

Posted by: Rishi on March 15, 2009

People please, be happy it's better than getting rejected.


Best of luck

Posted by: Roshal on March 15, 2009

@ Ilyanep

Last year, I believe MIT did have a blog post on what to do if you were wait-listed. Maybe they'll do the same this year?

Posted by: Meghan on March 15, 2009

any indians in the waitlist??

Posted by: Nakul Khanna on March 15, 2009

Now I get to wait another 2 months ish to find out whether I have to beg for financial aid or not.

"Anyway, being in the top 12.5% of MIT applicants feels pretty good, and redoubles my determination to qualify for USAMO." -- Jimmy on March 14, 2009 03:16 PM

Exactly the same for me.

Posted by: Anonymous Person on March 15, 2009

WOAH, Ilyanep, you're a guy?! I mean, no offense, but I saw "Ilya" and always assumed you were a girl XD Guess I just have no idea what kinda names your nationality uses. Err, I am posting this because I saw you in that FB waitlisted group.

(sorry for posting here)

Posted by: Narce on March 15, 2009

@Narce Haha it's okay, I can see how you would make a mistake. But it's a Russian name.

@Laura Thanks for the link smile

Posted by: Ilyanep on March 15, 2009

Hey waitlisties...
I'm fairly sad about being on the waitlist like all of you probably are, but I'm glad that I still have a chance. I'm still able to keep my hopes up where they're usually kept anyways. smile
Thanks MIT for considering me - I feel really honored - and if it doesn't work out, I'll see you after four years!

Posted by: Gina on March 15, 2009

Any Indians waitlisted this year?

Posted by: Anonymous on March 16, 2009

And the waiting continues. But this time around I am optimistic.

Posted by: Leonard Korir, Kenya on March 16, 2009

Can somebody post the waitlist letter please...dying to know whats on it

Posted by: Anonymous on March 16, 2009

@ Anonymous

We have finished the selection process for MIT’s Class of 2013, and while we are unable to offer you admission at this time, we have placed you on our Wait List.

As you probably know, the candidates on this list are the first to be considered for admission should space become available in the class. As not every student will choose to enroll, it’s possible that we’ll be able to admit some additional applicants in May.

I know it is stressful to wait for decisions from colleges, and that this letter simply extends that waiting period. Please know that we wouldn’t ask you to wait longer if we didn’t have a good reason for doing so – each person on the Wait List is someone we’d love to see at MIT.

At the same time, we have to be realistic and note that there are no guarantees – so you should make sure that you have another option for next year should a spot at MIT not become available.

Please complete and return the enclosed card by April 18 to indicate whether or not you wish to stay on the Wait List. We will give you an update by late May.

Whatever your choice, and whatever the final outcome, we thank you for applying to MIT and we offer you our very best wishes for the future.

Sincerely,

Stuart Schmill
Dean of Admissions

Posted by: Laura on March 16, 2009

Hello everyone,

So back in 2006 I applied to MIT early action, and was deferred, and on April 1 of 2007 I was waitlisted, and then on the last day of AP Exams in May, I finally got an e-mail from Mari McQuaid (a past admissions officer) informing me that I had been accepted off the waitlist. It was phenomenal. For that year, the probability that an early action applicant would be deferred, waitlisted, and then accepted was 0.13%.

The moral is, if you really want to go to MIT, don't lose faith. Be realistic, of course, and be sure to make plans for somewhere else, but if awesome stuff has happened since you last sent them a letter, send them another one. For me, nothing happened after being waitlisted, but I sent one in January because lots of things happened in January.

As I slowly approach the halfway point of my undergraduate career at MIT, I can safely say that, despite the down moments, MIT is still the best thing that could have ever possibly happened to me.

Good luck, have faith, and remember,
It's all just business.

Ken M. Haggerty '11
Course 9, Course 4

Posted by: Ken M. Haggerty '11 on March 16, 2009

As others have stated earlier, being waitlisted is in some ways the worst possible outcome. With a "not admitted" decision, at least it's over. And as an Educational Counselor, I share your apprehensions...we all would like to see the students assigned to us get in, but the sad fact of the matter is that there's far more qualified applicants than available positions.

I was also accepted off the waitlist, many moons ago. I had cried the tears, reconciled myself to attend the local (very high quality) public university, accepted some prestigious scholarships associated with it, paid the non-refundable deposit, and basically resolved to move on with my life. And then, out of nowhere in May, I got the notice. And then went screaming in the halls. My mother's reaction? "Well we just wasted $250 for the deposit!" smile

A couple things to keep in mind. First, nobody knows at this point how many students they will take off the wait list, if any. Some years, they will take hundreds, others none. Second, the admissions office does not rank applicants, but re-evaluates those on the waitlist if and when slots come open.

So hope for the best, if you choose to stay on the waitlist. But keep in mind that you will do well, wherever you go.

Posted by: Charles S. Wong '90 on March 16, 2009

@Ken '11 @Charles '90

I applied EA too and got deferred, so I guess if I do end up accepted, I just took the really cool least probability path in.

Just out of curiosity, did you find that being accepted off of the waitlist put you at a disadvantage in some sense? I feel like the accepted students will be meeting each other for the next two months and we sort of get an anti-headstart (what do you call those again)? Just wondering what your experiences with that are.

Nevertheless, it seems like a minor hurdle and I will wait patiently till mid-late May. Thanks for the advice smile

Posted by: 0 on March 17, 2009

@Anonymous 3/17 12:09 AM

I did not feel at all disadvantaged or behind the rest of my class by coming in off the waitlist. However, please bear in mind that blogs, Facebook, the World Wide Web etc. did not exist in the mid-'80s when it was my turn. So it was impossible to participate as current prefrosh are now doing! I also did not attend Campus Preview Weekend, which did exist at the time.

That having been said, a lot of the socialization with other MIT students, including those in your class, will start when everyone arrives in late August for the start of the academic year. I made many friendships then that are still strong to this day, 23 years later.

So don't worry. If it's to be, you'll catch up in no time. And if it's not, there will be other challenges. And you'll still catch up in no time.

Posted by: Charles S. Wong '90 on March 17, 2009

@ Anonymous:

Yes, I missed Campus Preview Weekend, and I'm still bitter about it :p Or more accurately, I don't understand it and am not upset at all that I missed it. Actually, I think it's a lot more exciting arriving at campus wondering, "Is anyone going to like me?" than having that already answered for you in April.

I did a preorientation program (FAP!) which was PHENOMENAL and absolutely the high point of my life and I have already come to terms that the happiest days of my life have already past :p So yeah, preorientation programs are a pretty good way of not feeling alone after not having gone to CPW, because orientation itself doesn't present the same opportunities to socialize as FPOPs (Freshman PreOrientation Programs).

In terms of academics, the MIT process of admissions is notoriously and strangely inhuman (or so I've heard), not in the sense that they don't care about you, but in that every applicant is literally graded so as to be as objective as possible on something that's really completely opinionated. In retrospect, I was probably deferred because, in comparison to what other students here had, my high school was fairly bland in regards to science (our strengths were math, humanities, theatre, and lacrosse).

But yeah.....I'm definitely not bottom of class, or even close. It's really strange. Being waitlisted, I thought I would be a dummy compared to everyone else and just another penny in a bag of change. Part of being at MIT is realizing that at college (regardless of where you go), people aren't "smarter" but simply specialize in regards to course-of-study.

Good luck!
-Ken

P.S. "Anti-headstart" = Handicap.

Posted by: Ken M. Haggerty '11 on March 17, 2009

have been waiting for quite a while...how much more?:;

Posted by: sunil pati on March 17, 2009

well. i really wasnt expected to be waitlisted (more like denied) BUT i'm glad i was smile

dreams only come true if you continue to work hard.

GOOD LUCK everyone !

Posted by: anh on March 17, 2009

Hello all!

Does anyone know if we should also send in a progress report with our mid-April update to MIT? Thank you!

Posted by: Troy on March 19, 2009

Hey everyone!

I received the letter in the mail yesterday, and I expected the card we are supposed to fill out to be in there. I did not receive a card...did this happen to everyone or was it just left out of my letter??

Thanks!

Posted by: Wendy on March 22, 2009

Waitlists are colleges way of picking you last in gym class. You're still on the team but nobody really wants you. Harvard and Columbia just waitlisted me and my stress level has skyrocketed. Now I've gotta wait another two or three months? Ugh

Posted by: Brianne on April 1, 2009

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