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MIT student blogger Nisha D. '21

a semester i’m excited for by Nisha D. '21

to the tune of "a girl worth fighting for"

At long last, I’ve finally reached a semester where at least half my semester is comprised of classes I actually really want to take.

Here are the classes I took the previous three semesters, complete with a color coded key of how I classify the classes.Notice the relatively small fraction of classes per semester that I actually wanted to take and the overwhelming number of requirements/GIRs that are on there.

Now if we take a look at this semester…

Look at all those classes that I actually want to take! I’m even excited for the required classes, which is really saying something.

Let’s go through all of these so I can fangirl about each of them individually.

6.073 (Creating Video Games): I’ve been waiting to take this class since freshman fall, and it’s honestly one of the biggest reasons that I declared my double major in CMS so early (I am officially a double major, by the way!!). Classes with limited enrollment like 6.073 (officially CMS.611) are hard to get in without an affiliation in CMS. There are four projects of increasing sizes, and all of them are – you guessed it – creating video games! The final project involves creating STEM games for middle schoolers in Nepal, and I’m pretty interested in edtech, so I think that this will be a cool thing to work on. This class is also apparently known as “project management, the class”, and that’s a skill that I’d like to develop this semester, both in classes and in other arenas. I’m looking ahead to next summer to maybe get an internship in project management, so this class and my tenure as CPW Chair of East Campus will be good experience for that.

6.033 (Computer Systems Engineering): 6.033 is the Course 6 CI-M, which is one of the two communication intensive classes that Course 6s have to take. I actually think that even though this class is a requirement, I’m going to enjoy it a lot. One of the bigger components of the class involves reading papers and discussing them in recitation, and I finally feel like this is a Course 6 class that I can actually do well in – all my years of being good at English class have prepared me for this.

CMS.614 (Network Cultures): This is Petey’s class and oh boy I am hyped because a. I love Petey and b. the material of this class is super cool. According to the first line of Petey’s syllabus: “This course is a survey of important topics in the social and cultural aspects of networked media (including computers, mobile devices, entertainment technologies, and emerging media forms).” Our entire society is networked – heck, even humans are just one big network when you think about it – and learning about how they work is important!

7.013 (Intro to Biology): I actually tried to ASE Biology when I entered MIT, but I got a D on the Bio ASE, and while that is technically a passing grade (Ds get degrees), it isn’t for ASEing things, so I didn’t get any credit. I was kind of salty about this for a while, but after sitting through the first 7.013 lecture, I’m honestly kind of excited to be back in a biology class. I really like bio – in a slightly different version of this universe, I would have been a Course 7.

Other things I’m doing this semester:

  • UROP: One of the reasons I’m not really broken up about not getting into one of the classes I tried to lottery for is that I’d really like to spend a lot of time on my UROP this semester. It involves making a game in Unity as a platform to observe how creative children are, and also going around to public schools in the area to have kids play similar games. I really enjoy working on it (even though Unity is really buggy and is a disaster to work with, especially if you’re using Git) and I want to put in a lot of time so that I can finish it and hopefully have kids playing it before the end of the semester.
  • Fencing: The season ends within a month, which is weird, since fencing is literally the only activity I have that gives structure to my day. Fencing is still really difficult for me and I have so many things to work on, so I hope that I can find it in me to keep practicing from 5-7 every day even when the season ends.
  • East Campus CPW Chair: I’m finally part of the East Campus swamp (a vaguely self-derogating term used by people who care about EC politics a lot)! My job as one of three chairs is to make sure that East Campus’s CPW has a lot of awesome events and runs smoothly, and to interface with Admissions and the DormCon (Dormitory Council) CPW Chairs (Shuli is one of them!) to ensure that all the events are safe and SFW. This is a pretty big commitment, and I had to take a break from a cappella for it this semester, so I’m hoping that I can do a good job and gain a lot of experience in planning and managing large events like CPW.
  • 1E Hall Chair: 1E is the hall I live on, and I’ve finally graduated to being a hall chair! This means that me and the two other hall chairs have to attend every dormwide meeting to make sure that our hall gets a say in things, as well as make sure that all the administrative business on our hall gets taken care of. I actually ran for the position as a freshman last year, but was beaten out by three upperclassmen (which is fair), so I’m excited that I finally get to represent my hall.

I finalized my schedule today – it’s always satisfying to know that none of your classes are in flux anymore. Here it is, in all its glory!

I’ll sign off now, but hopefully I’ll be back to the blogs very soon to rant some more about how awesome my classes are and how excited I am to be in them :)