Wow – just noticed that my last entry was published over a month ago. Sorry guys, I apparently thought I was Nance for a second there… my bad. Meanwhile Mr. Prolific has logged 43 entries so far in 2007 – I think he deserves some sort of trophy, don’t you?
Before I tell you about my travels over the last month, I just want to take a minute to thank our senior bloggers Bryan, Sam, Mitra and Jessie. They’ve been a huge part of building this community, and I’m really, really going to miss them. Thanks guys, for sharing so much of yourselves over the years and for simply being awesome.
With four bloggers graduating, we’ll definitely have some openings in the fall and I’ll post the application details soon. I’m also happy to announce the arrival of a new blogger, Evan Broder ’10. Evan was actually hired last year, but we made him take a gap year because he decided to live in Burton Conner and we already had 3 bloggers living there (no longer the case with Sam and Mitra graduating). Look for Evan’s blog to launch later this month.
So where have I been?
The last time I wrote, our office had just received some really bad news and the fallout kept me pretty busy for the following couple of weeks (happily, the dust has settled quite a bit since then).
Mid-May found me on a plane to California for the Ivy-Plus conference. This conference happens every other year and is attended by admissions people from the 8 Ivy League schools, Stanford, and MIT. (Basically we share ideas and concerns and try to work together to make everything a little better in the field.) This year was Stanford’s turn to host, and they did an amazing job – big thanks to Rick Shaw (Stanford’s Dean) who kept us entertained and well-fed at every turn.
Even though I lived in Berkeley and Oakland for over a year after college, I somehow never made it down to Stanford during that era, so this was my first time seeing the campus. What a beautiful place! Mad props to Stanford students – if I lived in a place that cool I’m not sure I’d ever be able to get any work done.
I went on a student-led tour and our guide was refreshingly honest. Response to “the earthquake question” (which I gather is fairly common on their tours): “yep, no doubt we’re overdue for the big one, but no one really thinks about it too much.” :-) (As you guys know from these blogs I’m a big fan of college reps just being real and not trying to sugarcoat things… so bravo.)
Post-California, I had about 12 hours at home before getting on another plane to attend my college reunion (I won’t say which number, but you can stalk me on facebook and figure it out). That was an absolute blast, and also the first vacation I’ve had in as long as I can remember – it went way too fast.
After Memorial Day, I had a whirlwind four days in the office before leaving again for Waitsfield, Vermont, where I spent a week hiking (and eating… a lot) with my family. To those of you who call Vermont home: I am jealous. What an amazing state you have! (And I honestly didn’t mind how hard it was to find cell phone service and internet access!)
(P.S. you may think Ben & Jerry’s is good when you eat it out of the pint, but that pales in comparison to tasting it right off the production line – trust me.)
So now I’m back and making plans for the summer. I have a bunch of behind-the-scenes upgrades to do on this site, some print redesign projects, a bunch of new copy to write, and a lot of planning meetings to attend. We’re also moving a significant part of our reading and selection process online this summer, which involves a lot of learning and testing. Should be an interesting few months.
If you guys have ideas for things you’d like to see on mitadmissions.org or MyMIT, drop a comment into this thread and let me know. I’m not promising we can do all of them, but we’ll sure give it a shot.
Hope your summers are off to a great start!
P.S. In response to Greg’s comment about the server taking forever to post comments, I totally agree and that’s at the top of my list of things to address this summer. We’ll be moving to a new server and hopefully upgrading the software, so the slow comments should be fixed before the busy fall season kicks off. Sorry for the inconvenience!