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MIT student blogger Melis A. '08

An MIT Apprentice!!!!!! by Melis A. '08

MIT Alum Randal Pinkett has won The Apprentice!

MIT alums are known for many things, but i’s not everyday that one wins a competition to become the apprentice to one of the most recognizable real-estate moguls in the world. For those of you who haven’t heard yet, Randal Pinkett has just won The Apprentice! The MIT Alumni Association and the Black Alumni of MIT Association organized a huge event at Kresge Auditorium tonight, where about 800 members of the MIT community got to watch a fellow Techie kick butt!

Over, and over, and over again, Donald Trump and the other candidates on the show stressed Randal’s amazing education. Even Donald Trump (who studied business at the Wharton School at U. Penn) acknowledged that Randal’s education “blew him away.” Here’s his background: he has five academic degrees in engineering, business and technology including: (
-a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Rutgers University (GPA 3.9/4.0)
-an M.Sc. in Computer Science from the University of Oxford in England as a Rhodes Scholar
-an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from MIT (May 1998)
-an M.B.A. from MIT Sloan School of Management (May 1998)
-a Ph.D. from the MIT Media Laboratory (November 2001)

He even wore his Brass Rat on the show! Not only did he go to all these prestigious schools, but he really showed that he’s a compassionate person and a great leader! Everyone on the show admired him and praised him in every way.

So, at around 10:57 PM tonight, Trump decided to pick Randal to be The Apprentice over Rebecca, a financial journalist from Chicago. Trump then gave Randal his first test and asked if he should also hire Rebecca to also be an apprentice. The crowd in Kresge took a deep breath, and Randal said no! It was shocking! On one hand, I think he did the right thing in that he is way more qualified than Rebecca, but on the other, did he just want the entire spotlight for himself? Comments, anyone?

Anyway, he founded a multi-million dollar company called “BCT Partners” and consults for many other companies. Straight from The Apprentice website: “A former college championship track and field athlete, he has received numerous awards for his accomplishments as an entrepreneur and technologist including the National Society of Black Engineers “National Member of the Year.” A Leadership New Jersey Fellow and Next Generation Leadership Fellow, Randal has been featured by Black Enterprise magazine and Ebony magazine in their “30 Leaders of the Future” issue. He is a proud member of First Baptist Church in Somerset, N.J., where he resides and is happily married to his wife Zahara.”

Yay for MIT Alumni!!! (And yay for the MIT alumni website…he lists all of his telephone numbers and even his home address. Haha, I know, stalkeeerrrr.)

26 responses to “An MIT Apprentice!!!!!!”

  1. Melis says:

    I’m so sorry Cynthia, I didn’t even think about the fact that the shows are delayed on the West Coast. I’ll be more careful next time =(



    as a fellow MIT alumnus, I was all the way behind you and hoping that you became Donald’s new Apprentice.

    However I was dismayed at that last 20 seconds of the show when Donald gave you the opportunity of recommending that Rebecca also be made an Apprentice. (Co-apprentice?) Your rationale (surely not reflective of an MIT education) that there could only be one Apprentice was flawed. There have been other Apprentices and there will be other ones in the future. Furthermore there would have been no conflict between you and her since she choose the other project.

    Unfortunately the last 20 seconds showed a totally different Randal – a conceited and self absorbed individual.

    I suggest that you reconsider what you said and perhaps Rebecca can still be an Apprentice.

    Luca Bencini-Tibo MIT 74, 75

    954 448 2126

  3. Anna says:

    YAY FOR MIT! I LOVED the crowd at Kresge tonight, even with the corny contests in the middle! I love that MIT students are always so excited about our alums doing awesome things! Watching Randal get complimented on his education was like a high!

    I’m not sure how much I like the fact that he didn’t want to hire Rebecca (after all it’s not called “the apprenti” haha), but hey he deserved it! He has the most impressive resume I’ve ever seen, and he’s a very calm and competent leader. Kudos to Trump for going with competency instead of good looks and a sob story about a broken ankle.

  4. Cynthia says:

    I agree – very happy for him! If I was Randal, when asked about hiring Rebecca, I would have said “Mr. Trump, I would like to hire Rebecca to work for me.” smile I wonder when he gets to call him Donald…

    One complaint – remember that those of us on the West Coast are delayed. I saw your posting before I saw the show. :(

  5. Mia says:

    Even though I haven’t kept up with the show religiously (my mom does), even I was surprised at his decision to not hire Rebecca. Trump stated that Randall is a great leader who leads with niceness, compassion, etc. His refusal to hire his competitor, who wouldn’t even work on his chosen project, doesn’t correspond with this whole “nice” image. It was disappointing. Even though Randall is a more qualified education-wise, Rebecca has a lot of potential and Trump wanted to give her a chance. Why did Randall keep Rebecca from her dream when he knows that her success would not hurt him the least bit? That’s just mean.

  6. Anonymous says:

    whatever…I think Randal deserved to say no to Rebecca because although she’s qualified…she’s only 23 and no real business experience (she just writes about business) and he deserves all the fame. I think Rebecca should be hired maybe 5 or 10 years down the road when she has more experience…and personally, she is really confident and cool, but I really couldn’t help but get ANNNNNOOOOOYYYYYEEEDD of how she was using her broken ankle story as overcoming a major challenge. C’mon…I have a friend who overcame cancer and Randal’s grandma died in Episode I. NOTHING is a bigger challenge than losing a loved one.

    Also, I was SOOOO annoyed of that one little Toro girl and how she was backing Becca. Ok, so fine, Becca used her as a Capital Edge member although she had shown no signs of potential, but c’mon she was like worshipping her over zealously on the show. I’m surprised she didn’t go up and bow down. She looked like a fool!

    Ne wayz, I respect Randal and his decision. He had the right to win by himself. He clearly is more outstanding than Becca and it was totally his call.

  7. I heart MIT says:

    I think Randal did the correct thing, hands down. Donald Trump has not asked any other winner in past seasons to do what he asked Randal to do. Randal worked hard, and by suggesting Rebecca, it would be like demeaning all that he had accomplished. If Mr. Trump wanted Rebecca to be his apprentice so badly, he would have hired her himself. Randal should be able to enjoy his success and not have to worry about feeling bad for Rebecca! I love MIT!!! Congrats Randal!

  8. Me says:

    I was too suprised when Randal declined to hire REbecca. However, why is it that the only way a black man can win is that he has to be extremely well education, kind, nice, non threatening and get along with everyone and be best buddies with his competition? I don’t think he was being conceited just standing up for what he thought was fair and correct. Why does it have to be two when he wins? I think he did it on principal. I’m sure many of the very same people who thought he was so great will know bad mouth him. As usual, race matters.

  9. BB says:

    #1: why didn’t the Donald himself make the decision F to hire both Rebecca and Randal? Clearly he wanted them both. #2: Randal would have been a bigger person to have said yes to Rebecca. Disappointing to see the nice guy’s mean spiritedness

  10. Dan says:

    Wow that’s so much education!

  11. Dixlee says:

    Randall’s refusal to share the spotlight with Rebecca goes to show one thing: just because someone is well-educated doesn’t mean they can’t still be a jerk! For all his illustrious education Randall failed to learn how to be a good sport ~ and generous of spirit! Exactly HOW having said, “Yes,” to Donald Trump’s wish to hire, Rebecca, could possibly have impuned or lessened his ‘win,’ I don’t know! He already HAD the job! Maybe MIT and all the other universities and schools that ‘dear’ Randall attended ought to be spending a bit more time helping students develop their humanity . . . there appears to be less and less of that quality in the work place today. Unforetunately, Randall just joined ‘the club’ that already exists. He’s no different ~ just wanted Mr. Trump to think he was! Sadly he had the opportunity to ‘break’ that mold, but he chose to not be an innovator ~ but a sheep! He lost my respect . . . and I wouldn’t be too sure he didn’t lose Mr. Trump’s, too . . . we’ll see.

  12. ALUM 92 says:

    Randall is a self absorbed idiot. His actions will haunt him well into the future.

  13. J Tinsby says:

    Randall’s true ‘colors’ ( pun? ) came right to the surface in the last 25 seconds of the show. Jeez Randall, Trump wasn’t asking YOU to pay her salary, just if he should hire her. It’s clear you want all the glory and attention, but part of that needs to be tempered with some respect for your fellow man or woman.

    You could have taken the moment and showed what a big person you can truly be, instead you look like a self-aggrandizing, small, self-centered little man. You already have a successful business that allegedly is worth millions, so what do you expect to garner from your relationship with Trump?

    Randall, you should thank your lucky stars Trump even ASKED you IF he should hire Rebecca. If The Donald had had any sense, he’d never have asked you and HIRED both of you on the spot. Your performance was hardly stellar, if I remember you couldn’t even get the frequency of the satellite radio station correct in one of your tasks!

    I hope your tenure with Trump is a short one, it won’t take him long to see the type of person you really are. It was agonizingly clear to the rest of America.

  14. anon says:

    Maybe Randal didn’t think Rebecca was good enough to be hired. Just because he said “don’t hire her” doesn’t mean he’s a jerk – it may mean that he didn’t think we was qualified.

    And whoever said that the NYC business world required compassion? How many times did we hear Trump say on the show “Candidate X, you simply aren’t tough enough for this city.” Unfortunately, a bleeding heart in business often gets you nowhere.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Have you guys watched the show before?? Am I the only one who understands that it was a competition from the beginning. There is only one winner not two not three. He was the strongest candidate from the beginning. I’m disappointed at the comments here. I’m also disappointed Donald Trump for putting Randall in that position and overshadowing his victory. He never asked any of the previous Apprentices before, why would he ask Randall. Honestly, this is the most disgusting thing I’ve seen before and really questions the integrity of the game! If he has hired both, I would not watch the next Apprentice. I’m still convinced that I won’t be watching this racist game again! Randall did the right thing and has my vote 100%.

  16. Randal Fans says:

    The word is out.A site has been designed for all Randal fans out there:

    to post your comment, feedback, opinion, blog, and answer to other


  17. Camille says:

    Congratulations to Randall on his very well deserved victory. Frankly I think Mr. Trump may have lost his mind for a minute, to even think of asking Randall such an inappropriate question… heck the man was still celebrating his victory with fellow teamates, and Mr. Trump felt he had to take the spotlight away from him. If he liked Rebecca and her “loyalty” that much he couldve called her after the show to offer her a job. And I’m so glad Randall refused to share the prize, cause that may have been the last time we’d ever hear his name mentioned. Rebecca, as a beautiful white woman would’ve definitely overshadowed him or his outstanding credentials. Randall was by far more qualified than Rebecca from his education to his record on the show. He was a star from the beginning to the end… Rebecca won only one challenge, on which Randall helped her. I find myself wondering why Mr. Trump felt that Randall should’ve shared his prize. Why wasnt Bill asked to share his prize with Kwame? or the other winners asked to share. What an insult to Randall, especially when this runner up didnt even measure up. Randall keep your head up, you are a true winner!!!

  18. Lisa says:

    You people kill me with all your negative commets about Randal, Randal showed his self worth and dedication to achieve the most high. Which is and was far more then what I can honestly say about Rebecca. It sickens me deeply how you people want to continue to find fault in this superb man “Randal” who earned and deserved everything that he got. By the way It wasn’t gave to him because had that been the case he would not have won. I don’t blame Randal one bit for not wanting to share his title this was a competition for you all who have negative commits about Randal not sharing his title. Futhermore Randal made Randal Trump need to be thankful because if you ask me it was a prilviledge to have someone of Randal CHARACTER. Randal will continue to achieve with or with out Trump. As for Rebecca who was very cut throat maybe once she’s matured a bit and gotten some good work experience and knowlege under your belt then try again! As for everyone else who has negative commits regarding Randal get a education and some goals then try forming a negative opinion.

    Randal I’m with you at 110% I wouldn’t do anything differently. The apprentice and its bias behavior won’t be around much longer you’ll be around longer then that show will. After this I’m sure of. As for me and my house the appentice is no longer welcome in it.

  19. Shelley says:

    I am so GLAD GLAD GLAD that Randall said “NO Rebecca.” She had the audacity to try to attack Randall’s credibility in the board room a few episodes ago by calling him ‘irresponsible.’ Well if he’s irresponsible THEN WHAT MUST SHE BE. Randall is far from irresponsible… so he forgot a sign label.. People make mistakes, SURELY Rebecca should know this since she made plenty of mistakes. But No…. she jumped on the wagon and tried to throw Randall under the bus… and the very bridge she burned, she needed to walk over that night, and guess what Randall said SEE YA. In my opinion… the end result was “what goes around came back around in spades.” Then she had the audacity to tell Trump she was a better apprentice, and attack Randall again… then she smiles and wants a recommendation… I DONT THINK SO…

    For all those who were unhappy with the verdict… oh well… Randall is not a doormat, and he did the right thing… Get over it.

  20. Clyde says:

    It’s interesting reading the comments on your site regarding Randal’s opinion that Trump not hire Rebecca as an Apprentice.

    Honestly, I respect Randal’s opinion when asked by Trump. Initially, I was surprised and felt that he had made a faux pas; however, it is not Randal’s faux pas, but Mr. Trump’s. If Trump wasn’t prepared for Randal’s response, he should not have asked him the question, particularly in front of a live audience (and in front of Rebecca!). It would be inappropriate, except for the fact that we know well that anything goes on television.

    So, if we fault Randal for his response, it’s only because he answered the question directly and bluntly, which is a trait that Trump often exhibits.

    Trump didn’t have to listen to Randal, and Randal never suggested that out of the Apprentice forum, Trump shouldn’t hire Rebecca (when the show is off the air). But in the forum of the Apprentice, he felt that two people winning would diminish his victory.

    And I’m sure that if you had been able to ask Rebecca and Randal prior to the finale whether they could avoid the final showdown and just both be the Apprentice, that they would have answered NO, that it was a competition and that one person should win.

    It was unfair for Trump to put Randal on the spot in front of a live audidence. He certainly asserted his opinion very well… it is just that some people don’t like his opinion….because we, the audience, got emotionally attached to some of the potential “Apprenti.” We forgot that it’s a competition for our entertainment.

    By the way, if we wanted to avoid the finale, why not go back to the show even earlier and just hire the last four? Of course not, because we would say that the two fired prior to the finale were not nearly as good as Rebecca and Randal. Well, there was no comparison between Rebecca and Randal either.

    Stragetically, Randal was fortunate that Trump respected his opinion. Randal will be remembered as the winner of the Apprentice for this season. He will not have to explain each time that he refers to his Apprentice experience that he is actually one of two winners (But that he was chosen first).

    Randal made the right decision and his stock has risen because he asserted it bluntly and directly to Trump, in a Trump-like manner. He did not forget that he is in a competition, while we the audience had forgotten that it was a competition first and foremost.

    The hellabulloo (spelling?) of his comments will fade quickly enough and we’ll all enjoy hearing what Randal is up to in the future…as with Bill Rancik.

  21. It is interesting to read all the comments. Many racial, prejudiced ones and thankful too. Looks like MIT’s learn everything but did not learn how to get past perosnal prejudice and racialism.

    For the perspective of Donald Trump he hired who could really give him the best results for his money and risk.

    What Randall did was his decision on the spot.

    Who won the game in fact compare carefully–

    Randall with extra ordinary educational qualifications, degrees from most prestigeous institutions in the world and with solid business background and about 30 years of age.

    On the other hand standing next to him, challanging all the above qualifications was a young 23 year old, holding degrees from not so great school’s for the same job. Go figure yourself.

  22. Vicky says:

    I think Randal didn’t make a very wise choice by saying no to the question whether Trump should hire Rebecca. Look at the compliment Trump gave Rebecca, “You handled pressure like no one I have ever seen.” Think about how many people Trump has met and he gave Rebecca that honor. I think it is quite obvious that Trump liked Rebecca a lot.

    By saying no, I only figured out one thing about Randal. He cannot share glamour with others!

    I think Trump would just hire Rebecca for other occasions. She is too good to be granted to another firm.

  23. yvette says:

    this finale is more warlike than other apprentice finales. dont think trump was really in need of randall’s opinion whether rebecca should be hired. trump was just giving him rebecca’s head.

    remember gladiator? the victorious gladiator gets the privilege from the leader to finish his enemy. to refuse the privilege is to defy the emperor.

    star wars. anakin vs dooku. dooku lost and anakin would have arrested him. instead palpatine made anakin cut off dooku’s head. at first anakin was hesitant but it was clearly a command to him “do it” as palpatine’s new apprentice.

    instead of giving randall a flashy car, a total victory would be to give him rebecca’s head.

    the way trump made randall finish rebecca without sounding politically incorrected was by asking him if rebecca should be hired. randall would be totally naive of the art of war if he did not understand what the donald is really asking him. but he did know what it all meant and he did exactly what trump would have done. he did the right thing as a true warrior and apprentice.

  24. Ken says:

    If Donald Trump wanted to hire Rebecca he would’ve regardless of what Randal said. I think the question was just a test of toughness, and Randal proved himself down to the last minute.. and for those that feel he should have shared the title with Rebecca.. please watch the entire season again when it comes out on DVD.

  25. Anonymous says:

    I agree with Ken….For those out there thinking that Randall should have shared the glory and going on and on how his integrity and character were degraded from his final decision, please watch the entire season over again. Clearly, you will see that Randall is unquestionably more qualified than Rebecca.

    And again, it is indeed called the Apprentice, not the Apprenti. Oh, btw, how much money did Rebecca raise again at her final event?? $0

  26. anonymous says:

    Donald Trump with all his “business sense” should not have asked Randal if he should hire Rebecca in front of thousands of viewers. “Common sense” should have told “The Donald” this question could impose a negative image of Randal. Makes me question Donald Trump’s business ethics….