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MIT student blogger Jess K. '10

Guest Entry: Christina Bognet by Jess K. '10

Supplemental materials to help you through the next few days.

This post is written by the beautiful and talented Christina ’10, whose first choice when applying to colleges was admittedly NOT MIT, but is quite possibly the funniest (and happiest) Baker biology genius I know, as well as a poignant and accomplished blogger. Enjoy!


Precisely one year ago today I sat drinking coffee at a Dunkin Donuts with one of my best friends, Colin, as we chatted about getting into our respective first choice schools early decision.

“I have a really good feeling for you, Christina,” he told me.

“Ahhhh, I don’t know. Probably not. But you…you’re getting into MIT. I know it. How could they not take you?”

We agonized and fantasized over getting The Big Envelope (or in Colin’s case, The Tube) until both we and the pterodactyls in our stomachs were exhausted.

The days leading up to decisions were sickeningly brutal and wonderfully exhilarating all at the same time. There would be hopeful, “I’m getting in! I’m getting in!” moments, followed by, “they’ll never take me,” moments. It was difficult to decide whether optimism or pessimism was the better approach and neutrality seemed impossible. As much as I tried to be rational in convincing myself that things would turn out okay, at the end of the day, the facts remained: I wanted to go to School A and I needed to get in. Period.

I checked the decision online, put my head in my hands and sobbed. They were not tears of joy.

Flash forward one year. I’m sitting in my dorm room looking out at the beautiful Boston skyline, taking a break from my 5.111 problem set. I had dinner a few hours ago with the very same Colin who was accepted to MIT on the day I was deferred from what I thought was my dream school.

I have grown so much in the past year and in watching my friends and myself trudge through the college admissions process, I’ve gained a lot of perspective. I don’t know how it ever got to the point where I put so much emphasis on a place that seemed perfect at the age of 18, that I actually feel as though my happiness was contingent upon my acceptance into a college. I only realize now how preposterous that truly is. Two of my best friends were rejected from their first choice schools and yet are completely in love with where they ended up and roll their eyes when reminded of how much they thought they wanted to be somewhere else.

As for me, I love MIT. I really do. I’m lucky and blessed to be here and SO grateful my dream school deferred me. But to say I wouldn’t have been happy somewhere else is unreasonable and silly. The truth is, and maybe you can’t see this yet, it’s going to be okay. It’s going to be better than okay.

However, if you’re anything like my old self, if you don’t get the news you are hoping for on Saturday or in April, you’re going to experience this crazy whirlwind of emotions. You’re going to feel sad, angry, apathetic, confused, and defeated. But somewhere in there, you’re going to have this isolated moment where you think to yourself, “WhatEVER. I’m going to succeed anywhere.”

And when that feeling comes… hold on to it and never let go.

56 responses to “Guest Entry: Christina Bognet”

  1. Thuita Maina says:

    This is an inspirational entry. Thanks Lulu for the entry.

    Regular decision applicant.

  2. Shashank says:

    Oh gr8…so u dint get to an iv or stanford or cmu or jhu or w/e…but u still gt into MIT!!!!!!

  3. raagini says:

    Thanks for the confidence

  4. Jess says:

    Thuita – I’m Jess. This post was written by my friend Christina. Lulu and I are totally different people..

    Shashank – 1) we never said that we didn’t get into any of the aforementioned schools, and 2) if you’ll read the post, as you recall, it’s not about that.

    Everyone else – Christina and I love you all smile Good luck!

  5. estefi says:

    one word: thanks smile

  6. Spacepirate says:

    *first comment* w00t!

  7. Larisa says:

    thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you

    i keep trying to re-focus all the anxiety to– “it’s not that I’m anticipating MIT so much as I’m just anticipating college period”.
    And as many times as I can say in my head:
    how could I not be myself? I will be me, whether it be at MIT or anywhere else.
    But it doesn’t stick. Nope!

    I had a similar experience in eighth grade. I didn’t get into my “dream” high school. I was not even aware that there was another public school available besides the one I had been considering for over a year (way longer than I’ve been considering MIT).
    But by accident almost, I discovered the school I go to now and I couldn’t be happier.

    But even given that experience I still can’t relax about Saturday.
    Time can’t suddenly slow down right? The earth has to explode or something first, or at least drop to absolute zero right?

  8. jas says:

    This is a beautiful post. Thanks, JKim and Christina.

  9. Bryan Henry says:

    It really makes me wonder why people that can’t type properly or bother to type out with at least decent spelling are insulting those bloggers that put effort into posting here, especially when its a great port like this.

    Thanks for the post, Jess and Christina. It helped remind me that even if I don’t get into my first choice school (MIT, of course!) its not the end of the world. The person makes the experience, not the school.

  10. Rafi says:

    Thnx… Its really nice to read about someone who knows exactly how i feel… =)

  11. Colin says:

    Oh, Prax. I’m glad you didn’t get into School A. I had a horrible night tonight, but I think things are going to be okay, somehow, and I’m glad you’re here. (Also, I really still believe you should be an admissions blogger. You’re grat.)

  12. milena says:

    great post!!! that’s exactly the way I feel right now, and even though I know that wherever I end up I’ll be happy, if I don’t get in I’ll be very disappointed, if only for a minute. But I’m happy to know that for somebody it wasn’t the end of the world, and I hope it works out that way for me too smile

  13. Nintendud says:

    I couldn’t have said it any better, Christina. That pretty much sums up my feelings towards MIT. I’ve also met many great people through the unofficial MIT chatroom, and I don’t really know how well I compare with them. We’ll see what happens on Saturday; I’m sure the chatroom will be crazy leading up to the big moment. Too bad I’ll be away, taking a tour of KPTI with KEY Club at the Boston Medical Center (which is probably better than waiting at home, counting down the hours).

    Good luck to everyone!

  14. Shana F. says:

    Thanks for the post.

    In less than 24 hours I’ll be getting a decision, and I’m scared. I doubt that I’ll get in but I’m hanging on to whatever bit of hope I can find. This post made me feel much better. Even if I don’t get in to MIT, I know I’ll be happy somewhere else. But I also know that at first there will be alot of tears and sadness if I recieve a rejection. Thank you for finally saying it’s normal. You made me see that everything will be alright no matter where I end up. It’s just hard to remember that sometimes.

    In a year none of this will matter anyways. But for now, it seems like the most important thing in the world. Finally somebody understands what I’m going through.

  15. GRP says:

    This is my first entry. I have been reading many of the other entries, but have never written any myself. It sort of makes me more nervous reading what everybody has to say. But even so, while I read, it seems like I can feel a web of invisible strings connecting everyone’s minds together as they go wade through the same emotions while they wait for decisions.

  16. Elizabeth says:

    ditto to Shana F. a little more than 22 hours, and the nerves are way up-to the point of headaches (well, not now, but the other day…). Finals next week doesn’t help! But thanks so much for the post, I don’t feel like the blogs make my nerves worse but instead I feel that relating to those that post calms me. Thanks!

  17. Christina says:

    You’re welcome, guys. Let me know if there’s anything else I can do for you. smile

  18. GRP says:

    The reason I said that reading the blogs makes me nervous is because it makes me think about what the decision will be. If I don’t think about it, I’ll be less nervous. But it’s hard to push the issue out of my head.

  19. GRP says:

    “As the sun rose I could see the light creeping into the mist above. It made me feel much better as we milled around the deck waiting…”
    From a book I was reading – just thought it sort of fit the situation

  20. This is really very touching and when I actually thought about this thing, it seemed very practical… There are so many things which we desperately want in life thinking that life will be much better if we get them, but believe me, life is no worse if we don’t…!!!
    Its more about the individual than about the place…

  21. Marion says:

    VERY inspirational. thank you =)

  22. bbllp says:

    Thanks a lot. I’m not an EA applicant and I’ll have no decision on Saturday. But I know a lot of nice friends who’re applying to MIT EA(thanks to Adam’s unofficial chat room) and I’m going to share with them whatever feelings they have after seeing the decisions.

  23. WOW! I must say that thsi blog is really inspiring. I will try to keep your advice in the back of my mind for tomorrow! I am really nervous, and I have no clue what I am doing these days. Well thank you VERY much for this blog!

  24. Andrew says:

    Exactly. Great entry.

  25. says:

    I’ve been reading your blog for awhile and I laughed a lot, thanks for adding a bit more sunshine in otherwise freezing Canadian life 0=)
    And yes, I say ‘eh?’ a lot.

    I just have a (REALLY LONG) question…how imperative is it that I take physics? Right now I am in grade 11 and I’ve never taken it before, but it is my lowest mark and I truly hate it as a class. If I wanted to apply to MIT for anything…is it true I need to take as many sciences as possible? I am truly enjoying chemistry,,,but I dread the next class of physics x.x DIE PHYSICS DIE!

    If it is absolutely necessary, I think I’ll drop it,,,and then take it next year or something. What do you think?

    Oh yeah, and THANK YOU for your advice on SATs. Not many people here are applying for American schools so I’m one of the few that might take it =p

    — jinny.

  26. Elizabeth says:

    it’s not even 7AM here and I can’t sleep! It’s so close…

  27. Adam C says:

    Well, considering it’s about two hours until I receive that fateful decision, you have succeeded in describing my current situation exactly. It was a very good entry, very inspiring.

  28. MD says:

    Yes, I’ve been awake since five too. And about an hour and 13 minutes. Can you imagine, I’ve been stuck on whitehatdesign for so long….counting…
    In any case, this blog calmed me down. Thanks.
    Uhh…and … ALL THE BEST to each and every Early Action applicant…

  29. Elizabeth says:

    You know, I only had one dream last night about the decision? It was where I got in…but it took me so long to decipher the message after I said “submit” that I wasn’t all that sure that I HAD gotten in! And yes, I spent lots of time staring at Dan Beard’s site too… I prefer the base 2, it entertains me. 45 minutes!

  30. Elizabeth says:

    You just sitting at the computer wasting time too, MD?

    tYou just sitting at the computer wasting time too, MD?

    t<26 minutes

  31. Elizabeth says:

    I typed tI typed t<25 minutes

  32. Elizabeth says:

    ok, I give up, I typed that t is less than 2 (now 4) minutes but it wasn’t showing up with that sign.

  33. Jess says:


  34. Elizabeth says:

    Thanks Jess- And thanks for all your posts! I’m gonna stop posting now though, really.

  35. virginia says:

    i had a dream last night that i got into MIT…I basically did cartwheels down my street and screamed at the top of my lungs, and just as i was dialing my best friend’s number, i woke up. it was pretty depressing to find out it was all a dream!

  36. Elizabeth says:

    Admissions are up…defered

  37. Anonymous says:

    *deferred, I can’t spell

  38. Anonymous says:

    You poor thing, you have to go to MIT. I can just imagine the tears running down your face as you came to grips with the fact that MIT was the best you could do. Everyone told you not to use so many semicolons in your essay and that Christina was ,in fact, spelled with a ch, but no, you didn’t listen. And look where that got you … MIT. I can only imagine that your parents weep as their dodging of the subject fails and they must shamefacedly admit to their friends that their daughter goes to *sob* MIT. Good job, failure.

    I am, of course, kidding. The post was actually pretty helpful, but I couldn’t resist. Oh, and JKim rules blogs.

  39. XTINA I AM SOOOOOOOOOO PROUD OF YOUU. i love you / am very proud of how you continue to utilize those hot writin’ skills.

    i am seeing you over break. no excuses. miss/love! wink divvy

  40. Colin says:


    love colly

  41. tina says:


    please go to baker formal with me tomorrow. and shopping of course.

  42. Lulu says:


    you’re welcome, of course!

  43. Crystal says:

    OK.. If you weren’t admitted for EA would it be worthless to apply RA? Or are you allowed to? I was just wondering..


  44. Thank you so much for writing this. I am deferred, and it seemed that my world was coming to an end. Thankfully I am able to see the positive side of being deferred, and I hope for the best. I know that regardless where I end up I will still be able to pursue my dreams.

  45. Emily says:

    If you were deferred for EA you will automatically be considered for RA, Crystal; if I’m remembering the stats correctly, about 300 of those admitted RA will have been deferred the first time around.

  46. Jane says:

    Very inspirational. Thanks.

    You always have cool things to post on your blogs. =D

  47. maia says:

    that is a great feeling for any moment of despair.

    thank you.

  48. Michelle says:

    Oh, Prax. I’m glad you didn’t get into School A. I had a horrible night tonight, but I think things are going to be okay, somehow, and I’m glad you’re here. (Also, I really still believe you should be an admissions blogger. You’re grat.)

    – Colin

    Man, Colin, I agree with you. Well done, Christina! smile

    PS: Can I have your pterodactyls? smile

  49. Christina says:


    You don’t want them, trust me. They do not respond to commands AND have been known to interfere with cortisol/epinephrine levels in my body. :D

  50. Mikey Yang says:

    Fantastic entry! Loved it. : ) Rock on bloggers+friends.

  51. hailey says:

    xtina! that’s my girl!

  52. Crystal says:

    Well, Emily, I appreciate your comment but… I was flat out not accepted. I feel there were some elements of my applicatio that were lacking and would like to improve them although I was… not accepted. It’s not the end of the world for me but I was just wondering smile


  53. Michael says:

    what a tough life didn’t make it into my number 1 school I guess Bunker Hill community college is my only choice…or maybe MIT! Whatever, I’ll be alright i imagine, MIT will do!!!!! So do you think there are smart people at the communiity college?? Just not that smart…right, rrrrright.

    Nice post, life’s a bitch sometimes… it just ain’t gonna work out like we want, “we can’t always get what we want, but if we try sometime, we just might find, we get what we need” as Mick Jagger and the Rolling Stones said so eleoquently in song. So be of good cheer because wherever you go there you are and the profound beauty that is you will be expressed at whatever college and your light will shine without exception!