MIT Admissions

Massachusetts Institute of Technology



Mar 15, 2008


Posted in: Process & Statistics

In the near future, we'll have some advice 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)


Posted by: Vanilla on March 15, 2008

Wow. I'm in a bit of an odd situation. Waitlisted here and at Caltech...

Posted by: Matt on March 15, 2008


Posted by: Kinshuk on March 15, 2008

Waitlist but accepted at Caltech...

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

the wait goes on..............

but still, I love you guys! you were amazing!

Posted by: mo on March 15, 2008

Hey Matt, let' form a club. Same here. Waitlisted here and at Caltech.

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

I am in that club, wait listed at Caltech too!

Posted by: kevin on March 15, 2008

How do you know if you are on the wait list?

Posted by: Ivan on March 15, 2008

wait listed! this is confusing.... i have to wait until the end of May now? they say they will "update" me in May, what does that mean?

Posted by: quentin on March 15, 2008

Hm...well, all I can say is "Thanks" to Mr. Barkowitz who helped me be ok with this.

Posted by: Matt on March 15, 2008

I'm waitlisted, hope May will come soon !

Posted by: Isshak on March 15, 2008

Can`t party tonight, damn!

Posted by: viraj on March 15, 2008

@ 1st Anonymous - me too!!!!! goodness this is so annoying i wish they just told me i was rejected! i got into caltech. may is so far away...i dont want to put everything else on hold just for the chance that i miiiiight get in, but most likely not. alas.

Posted by: Amanda on March 15, 2008

Both my best friend and I were waitlisted at both Caltech and MIT.

Posted by: Evan on March 15, 2008

Waitlisted, but accepted at Yale, with likelies at Stanford, Columbia, Duke, and UVa

Posted by: :) on March 15, 2008

Where do you see if you are on the waitlist?

Posted by: Ivan on March 15, 2008

do we still have an okay chance of getting in, or is it relatively over?

Posted by: amandaL on March 15, 2008

Relatively over afaik

Posted by: Angus on March 15, 2008

waitlisted at Caltech and MIT as well... odd...

Posted by: Kevin on March 15, 2008

same here wow, accepted at caltech, waitlisted at mit.

Posted by: Granton on March 15, 2008

where did you guys see that you made it on the waitlist?

Posted by: Ivan on March 15, 2008

so Kevin! i am kevin too. got waitlisted on both sides. i think we can be buddies.

Posted by: kevin on March 15, 2008

It says in your letter if you are waitlisted or not. By the way, how do we say to you if we want to be on the waitlist ?

Posted by: Isshak on March 15, 2008

waitlisted! ok so.....

Posted by: yukiko on March 15, 2008

How many people has been wait listed¿?

Posted by: Al on March 15, 2008

So, even if we don't get in off of the Wait List, at least we know that MIT really enjoyed our applications and liked us smile

Posted by: Lauren S. on March 15, 2008

Admitted to Caltech, waitlisted at MIT... but the deposit for Caltech is due May 1st (if I'm remembering correctly). Will we know by then?

Posted by: mp on March 15, 2008

same here, waitlisted at MIT but admitted to Caltech

Posted by: Janis on March 15, 2008

I expected to be rejected, so I'm really excited that I was waitlisted!

Posted by: Claire on March 15, 2008

Last year they waitlisted about 500 applicants and admitted 20, so there is a chance for some of us but not many.

I'm confused about how the waitlist process goes - we have to decide by May 1 where we're going but we won't know until late May whether or not we can go to MIT. Does anyone know how this works?

Posted by: Rob on March 15, 2008

yeah, the same question crosses my mind.

how many people were on the waitlist?

Posted by: Granton on March 15, 2008

Well, I was expecting a rejection.....

Posted by: Kitty on March 15, 2008

Man, If Isshak got waitlisted..i can fairly assume how the adcom works...and as i read somewhere...our decision is in all probability affected by wat the reader has for breakfast!

Posted by: Binga on March 15, 2008

I think you have to send a deposit to the school you will be going to if you don't get into MIT, then when MIT accepts you, you tell the other school you won't be going there. But I don't think you get the 1st deposit back.

Posted by: Claire on March 15, 2008

There's nothing like waiting for something since elementary school only to be told that you have to wait some more, and then some more after that (I was deferred at first) ...

Posted by: Jim on March 15, 2008

MIT, you defer me in EA. You waitlist me in RA. You're probably going to make me fight an ogre come late May to see if I'm worth admitting. Seriously now, most girls I've known haven't led me on this badly. You should be ashamed of yourself.

Nah, just kidding grin Waitlisted's alright (an honor, really) - and it's not a rejection. Out of curiosity, what percentage of the applicant pool are we? Less than the admits or more?

Posted by: J.L on March 15, 2008

I second Rob's question.. how are we to know whether or not we can go to MIT if deposits are due for other schools by May 1st and we won't know of MIT's decision till the end of May?
so basically... we got a consolation prize, but unless we've got absolutely nowhere to go come the middle of May, goodbye MIT?

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

I am glad that I atleast got would have really painful to see that "REJECTED"....okai...a month or two more of dreaming about MIT i guess!!!

Posted by: Disha on March 15, 2008

Hah, also waitlisted at MIT, accepted at Caltech. Wonder how many of us there are?

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

@ Ivan

if it says you're waitlisted on the 1st paragraph of
then you are.

There is a little bit of hope......

Posted by: Mo on March 15, 2008

yet, i'm waitlisted by MIT and accepted by Caltech, too. being waitlisted is so annoying!

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

To everyone wondering how the waitlist thing works, I am pretty sure that Claire has the right idea. From what I can figure out by reading previous blogs and such, you have to accept your spot wherever else you got accepted, but tell the admissions people at your other school that you are on the MIT waitlist. If you get in to MIT and choose to attend (I'm not sure if MIT's list is binding or not) then you forfeit your deposit at the other college and go to MIT.

Posted by: Matt on March 15, 2008

At least I can still smile.

"MIT, you defer me in EA. You waitlist me in RA. You're probably going to make me fight an ogre come late May to see if I'm worth admitting. Seriously now, most girls I've known haven't led me on this badly. You should be ashamed of yourself." -J.L

This is my quote of the week.

Posted by: Rob on March 15, 2008

I second Rob's post.

That quote made my day a whole lot better.

Posted by: Matt on March 15, 2008

Waitlist=a second chance at rejection.

Posted by: Anonymous on March 15, 2008

I can't believe they didn't reject me. Like, it totally blows my mind. I'm happy enough with this.

Posted by: Hadley on March 15, 2008

Hey Kevin, that sounds like fun... where else did you apply? maybe we'll both get accepted there and we can go there instead =P

Posted by: Kevin on March 15, 2008

I'm Waitlisted at both MIT and Caltech as well, but glad to finally hear something back. Best luck to the rest of you still hoping to get in; at this point I'm seeing a couple of scholarships to state universities that look really good...

Posted by: Alan on March 15, 2008

Ha... @Alan that's so true... I really should just go with those instead of waiting around for a school that may consider me eventually...

Posted by: Kevin Mader on March 15, 2008


I don't understand what you are saying, can you say it differently ? What's about me ?

Posted by: Isshak on March 15, 2008

Wow. I can't believe they didn't flat-out reject me. I'm in a serious state of shock. o.o

Oh, well. Hope for the future!

Posted by: JP on March 15, 2008

I view being waitlisted as a challenge... A challenge to be eventually admitted. So MIT, brace yourself, because here I come. This is going to be more fun than being accepted.

Posted by: PinxiSimitu on March 15, 2008

Hey, can we, the waitlisted, go to CPW¿

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

I wish i had some kind of positive message to post. I don't. Can I leave two negative messages.

Hello everyone I am Ishaan, I believe To err is human , to joke divine :D

Posted by: G.I. Joke Ishaan (India) on March 15, 2008

When will we know how many applicants got waitlisted?
Oh God I hope this year's yield is huge so they can take people off the waitlist, and by people I mean me...
I wonder how many other internationals got waitlisted. God helps us all, I hate this uncertainty limbo they call a Waitlist, but I guess it beats rejection

Posted by: Andrea on March 15, 2008

By the way, one of my great friends here was an international student who was waitlisted. Each year is different, but being admitted from the waitlist can definitely happen!

Posted by: Paul on March 15, 2008

Oh i posted in the wrong section :(

Posted by: G.I. Joke Ishaan (India) on March 15, 2008

Does anybody notice that the posts for the admitted students blog roughly is double the number of posts for this blog. I predict that the ratio is probably 2-1 for the admits to the waitlists.

Posted by: Granton on March 15, 2008

"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


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


Posted by: Eric on March 15, 2008

Hey, is there any way of knowing what place you are on the waitlist?

Posted by: Viraj on March 15, 2008

Doh! More waiting! >_Doh! More waiting! >_<

Posted by: Derek on March 15, 2008 is so much better than rejection. But it really hurts to know that Ill be waiting for yet another decision letter from MIT.

I am begging the people who got admitted to Caltech to go there
(Just for the record, I did not apply to Caltech because it is not need blind for international).

Good luck to all with the decisions from other universities. God bless.

Posted by: Faizan on March 15, 2008


If you take a look here

you can see that last year there were like 1550 Freshman admits, and 500 waitlist, so last year it was more like 3-1. But that doesn't mean that it's different this year or something. I really have no clue.

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

Deferred EA, waitlisted now...

For both Cal Tech AND MIT.

Posted by: Jack on March 15, 2008

Yup, I know one of the 20 that got in through the waitlist for 2011. It's rare, but it's not impossible. Don't give up!

Posted by: Oasis on March 15, 2008

Does anyone here know when the actual numbers for this year will be released? Such as how many applied, how many were admitted etc. I heard 27,000+ applied to Harvard.

I personally think everyone here needs to celebrate. I mean...MIT thinks we're good enough to go there. That is an enormous accomplishment, no matter what happens in May.

Posted by: Hadley on March 15, 2008

wait listed for me. Good luck to all.

Posted by: Chow on March 15, 2008

So i read in princeton review, 66% of applicants who got accepted attended?
But then i read that out of 500 waitlist people, only 20 got in in the waitlist.
Can somebody explain?

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

@ Anonymous -

I'm not an admissions officer, but I'll try to explain this.

So what happens is that MIT generally anticipates the number of people that are not going to come as part of their estimate when they are admitting students.

For example, last year, MIT admission officers already anticipated that there will be ~65% "yield" (people who decide to accept admission) in the number of students, so they would accept more than the actual class size. After they figure out the "yield" and the expected class size, then they adjust the expected class size up and down from the yield by using the waitlist. If a record number of people decide to accept MIT, then the waitlist might not even be used. This is also the reason why you guys have to wait until May (after everyone admitted had expressed their decision by May 1) until you get a final word on your status.

You can read this article for more information (it's about our class, 2011):

Posted by: Oasis on March 15, 2008

Waitlisted as well, and believe it or not, I was happy to read the decision. At least it's not a rejection! Let's just hope that MIT will use the waitlist a lot this year.

Posted by: Alex on March 15, 2008

^make that Alexa (I've just seen an "Alex" on the 'accepted' forum)

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

Well, wait listed. I guess I should be happy; I was preparing myself for rejection. And if I'm wait listed at MIT, it reflects well on my chances at my other (slightly) less selective schools.

At the same time, it continues the emotional roller-coaster for another six weeks. But with a 4% take-rate last year, I'm not holding out much hope.

Posted by: Micah on March 15, 2008

Getting into MIT is my dream......I think I still have a chance of getting into MIT.............

Posted by: Talal Saleem Almani on March 15, 2008

Only and only MIT.............

Posted by: Talal Saleem Almani on March 15, 2008

does anyone know if we have to pay to stay on the Wait List?

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

It is a bitter-sweet moment.......You are not accepted nor rejected.............You can just hope for the better future..............................................

Posted by: Talal Saleem Almani on March 15, 2008

Wait-listed...hmmm...I'm both elated and then dissappointed...was there something I lacked in my application I could have easily changed? I'm wondering that now, but I guess wait-listed is better than rejected and reflects that all of us were at least "liked" by the admissions officers.

The thing to remember is that what happens, happens for the best--in conjunction with destiny. I think all of us should be happy to even be considered individuals who could potentially be admitted later on. As Talal said, it is a bitter-sweet moment. smile

Posted by: anonymous1 on March 15, 2008

Does any other website keep stats on the 'waitlisted at School A', 'accepted at school B'? I know the decisions are made individually, but I applied to 4 other high selective schools (Duke, Dartmouth, Stanford, and one other I won't mention here).

Curious George wants to know!

Posted by: George on March 15, 2008

@ wink
you got your yale decision already? i thought it was april 1....did they send it to you early or smth??

Posted by: Blaargh on March 15, 2008

Some Ivy schools call or send a letter their cream-of-the-crop applicants and kind of "hint" that they already got in before other decisions are released. If you didn't get a call or a letter, it doesn't mean you didn't get in; they alert those kids about decisions early so they have more time to decide.

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

i hate waiting :(

Posted by: Rebecca on March 15, 2008

US Naval Academy FTW!!!

Posted by: Anon on March 15, 2008

Alright, I've been thinking about it for a few hours now and I think we should all take a proactive stance towards the waitlist by convincing admitted students not to attend MIT. We can work it out right? If MIT thinks we're bright enough to enroll there we are definately bright enough to figure this out.


Just kidding. I'm actually really happy that the admissions officers at MIT think I'm good enough to attend their school. Now I just hope I actually get the chance to attend it come next fall. smile

Posted by: Will P on March 15, 2008

I'm almost positive that the wait list is non binding, but I know I can't afford two deposits even if I really wanted to.

Posted by: Steph on March 15, 2008

and props to the guy talking about fighting ogres; thanks for making me laugh.

Posted by: Steph on March 15, 2008

How many are on the waitlist this year? Surely not 500 again?

Posted by: 0 on March 15, 2008

i dunno whether to be happy or saddened by this news, i guess all we can do is wait and see.

Posted by: Vavoom on March 16, 2008

Haha, the humor in all these forums (particularly "Waitlisted" and "Rejected") makes me happy--it shows how reslient and positive we are. I have realized that there are so many awesome people out there from my treks through MIT's admission blogs, which is truly encouraging. I wholeheartedly agree with those who said being waitlisted at MIT is an achievement in itself--you tried, and you made it to Semifinalist standing XDDD

Posted by: Jen on March 16, 2008

Jen, if you're right, then I must have the curse of the semifinalist... USABO, Siemens, and now MIT!

Waitlist is definitely not bad. Best of luck to everyone here!

Posted by: Elliott on March 16, 2008

eh waitlisted here but accepted at Caltech, Columbia, and Dartmouth

Good luck guys, and I'll see some of you at Caltech's Prefrosh Weekend!

Posted by: Andy on March 16, 2008

I'm in the same boat as J.L. Only add the waitlist at caltech to the mess.

With the incredibly low admittance of waitlisted students, it seems to me like I'll need to beg and grovel and pledge to clean every building on campus with a toothbrush in order to have the slightest chance of getting in. 4% last year? That's pretty rough. But if gaining admission means being the personal servant to all the admissions officers, a practice dummy for the football team, and target practice for Archery club, then I'll do it and be happy it was archery club and not the rifle team.

Posted by: Awkward Turtle on March 16, 2008

@ Anonymous
aaah ok. thanks for clearing that up...that's kind of silly though. they should do it all at once. oh well, the ivies are nuts we all know that raspberry
@ Jen
you are sooo right! the posts for the rejects (like me) and the waitlisted are so much more interesting/soulful than the OMG's of the admitted (no offence intended). Just goes to show what awesome people we are

Posted by: Blaargh / Kamya on March 16, 2008

sorry, i meant how awesome we are.

Posted by: Kamya on March 16, 2008

^^Awkward Turtle, you'd deserve to get off the waitlist just for that post smile) honestly

Posted by: Alexa on March 16, 2008

Wait-listed at MIT and accepted at Caltech...

Posted by: Interesting on March 16, 2008

i am not admittted and not even waitlisted
you are the lucky who(waitlisted) get the light in dark
atleast you have chance to get select

Posted by: Akash on March 16, 2008

I am also wait listed.......Does anybody knows is there any preference given to accomplished athlete in the wait list...................

Posted by: Almani on March 16, 2008

Hopefully good news will come in MAY. I love MIT!!!

Posted by: Chris T on March 16, 2008

(Originally written as a comment on Matt McGann's "Deffered" post last December)

Hello Everyone,
Let me tell you an interesting story:
I applied early action to MIT last year. Ever since I first moved to America in the fourth grade I had wanted to go to MIT. After nine years of hard work and sending my life in a 10*14" manila envelope, I, too, was deferred. Unwavered, I continued the application process, applied to a whole bunch of other schools regular decision, and waited. I sent a one-page letter off in January to all my schools because a lot of good things happened in January which I thought they should know about. In the spring, another letter came from MIT. I was waitlisted. Everyone told me to let it go, choose a school, and have it be done. My math teacher said they didn't deserve me if they couldn't make up their minds. A friend's mother said I was too normal for MIT. But I wanted it. I wanted MIT so bad. So I stayed on the waitlist.
An e-mail came on the last day of AP exams. I had just finished AP Ovid & Catullus when I came home, checked the mail (nothing), checked my phone (nothing), and turned on the news (nothing special) when finally I opened up my Outlook e-mail to find a message from Mari McQuaid titled:
"WELCOME MIT Class of 2011"
It might have taken me six months, but it was damn well worth it.

I've been at MIT seven months now and I have never felt more at home. Coursework was surprisingly easy, people INCREDIBLY friendly, faculty so supportive. I have never been happier than I am right now. I fit into MIT like a face-centered cubic crystal. After coming here, I now understand why it took me until the waitlist to get in. You would not believe how talented kids here are.

In short, then, the moral of my story is:
If you want it bad, don't give up.
Being deferred or waitlisted is just part of the process.
Be stoic about the admissions process. If you gave it your all, then there's nothing more you can do.
And remember,
it's all just business.

All the best,
Ken Haggerty

Posted by: Ken Haggerty '11 on March 16, 2008

Hey Ken, your words truly give hope to not give up on our dream. Let's just hope now that the ending will be the same ! But you're right, we must continue to hope for the best !

Posted by: Isshak on March 16, 2008

Ken's post just made my day. I was already set on staying on the waitlist, but to hear a story of success of someone who was also waitlisted is soo good... it makes the awful statistics a little less daunting. Thanks

Posted by: Andrea on March 16, 2008

Hi I am also waitlisted. Can anybody tell me what is the criteria for selecting applicants from the waitlist? Also does coach recommendation count in helping people get off from the waitlist?

Posted by: Talal on March 17, 2008

God, Ken. That post helped me out so much. Thanks.

Posted by: Matt on March 17, 2008

does anyone know if the admissions staff likes getting letters from waitlisted people? like more info to help persuade them to take us? also, does mit rank its waitlist and admit people in a certain order, or is it completely random? how is one waitlisted person chosen over another?

Posted by: Amanda on March 17, 2008

I would like to know the above as well! Thanks!

Posted by: Ross Klosterman on March 17, 2008

i was wait listed too, and i know the wait is going to be tough. but we have two from our high school that were honored enough to be put on the wait list. go hprhs!

Posted by: sam on March 17, 2008

Thanks ken for that story.Was also wait listed. Lets keep our hopes alive! Will always love MIT!!

Posted by: Lawrence on March 18, 2008

Historically, the waitlist is not ranked. If MIT decides to take people off the waitlist, all the admissions officers will have another round of selection and re-evaluate all the waitlisted students.

Wise words from Mollie about the waitlist:

"If you get an offer from MIT (which usually happens around mid-May), they will send you a financial aid offer at the same time, and you'll have a few weeks to make a decision. You should pick a college by the May 1 reply deadline [for US schools] and send in whatever deposit is required by that college, but if you are accepted to MIT and decide to go, you can just notify that college that you will not be coming in the fall."

Hope this helps! Matt will be putting out an entry with more information for waitlisted students soon.

Posted by: Paul on March 18, 2008

I have talked to admissions officers and have been told that this will be a prolific year for the waitlist, they plan to accept at least 1/4th of the waitlist. Have a great day!

Posted by: Alex Mallory on March 18, 2008

How many people are on the waitlist this year? MIT is my number one choice and I'm thankful for being put in the waitlist. I never thought I'd have made it this far...

Posted by: Andy on March 18, 2008

This year's waitlist has 739 hopefuls, which is a lot.
But if what Alex Mallory said is true then I'm not giving up hope.

Posted by: Andrea on March 18, 2008

Is the wait list ranked???

Posted by: Pavel on March 18, 2008

Gr8!!!...If 1/4 is the scene then i guess we have a good reason to be all the more optimistic....Thanks for keeping our spirits high!!

What usually are the chances of internationals being admitted from waitlist? I guess they would admit us only if space becomes available in the quota for international students..??

Posted by: Disha on March 19, 2008

Reading everyone's post has been really encouraging for me. Even though I hadn't been expecting to get accepted, now I feel determined to do my best to get admitted later on. MIT has been my first choice all the way, and everyone's optimism has made me feel more confident about being waitlisted.
I know in one of Matt's earlier posts (from 2006), he said to keep MIT updated with good news or give the office a phone call. Is that all I (and everyone else on the waitlist) can do?
I want to be proactive, but at the same time, I also don't want to come off as overly aggressive.

Posted by: Tiffany on March 19, 2008

Having lived in United States for four years, having finished high school, getting a 3.9 gpa even though i can not perfectly speak english, having taken 5 ap courses, 2 collge physics courses, particpated in 25 math competitions and having won honors in 22 of them, having played varsity football for 2 years, having a 29 act with a terrible english score, having won few science competitions, having taken 10 semesters of math, 12 sems of science, having tutored students math and science, having been a math T.A., having participated in 20 clubs, having the ablity to speak 4 languages everyday, and yet not getting accepted! You know how I feel as an Internations Applicant! But life goes on and I have to try again!

Posted by: 0 on March 19, 2008

This year there is more chance for waitlisted students to get off from the list...........Good Luck to everyone.....

Posted by: Almani on March 20, 2008

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