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MIT student blogger Bryan O. '07

I am Treasured :) by Bryan

Graduate school visit #1 (Updated)

Mission Log 3042007

It’s 6 o clock in the morning, and I ask myself. Bryan, what are you doing today? I’m going to GRAD SCHOOL! I surreptitiously jump out of my lofted bed trying to land with a gymnast’s dismount onto the floor below without awaking my roommate. I put my contacts in, and stroll down the stairs and ask myself the second big question for the day. Subway or Taxi? Realizing I’d filled out a survey online that had a $30 payout, I decided to be a high-roller and take a cab to the airport.

After a short ride to the airport, I board transcontinental flight #1 to LAX. Not Lacrosse City, folks but Los Angeles. After a 5 hour nap, I awaken to the sounds of wheels skidding on the landing strip. Woo hoo, I’m “early”. Yay for airlines padding flight times so we’re always early these days. Anyone else notice that? Looking at the flight departures, I realize that I can make an earlier flight, so I do the “My plane is leaving” hustle.

“STOP!” yells the TSA officer.

Everyone stops in place. Anybody remember “Saved by the Bell” when Zach would say freeze and then the whole scene would freeze except for him? Yea, I experienced that first hand as I stood in place as the TSA officers wandered through the garden of temporary statues.

“Hammer Time.”

The scene resumes.

I skidaddle over to my gate and I’m off to Oakland. Take Bart from OAK to Downtown Berkeley, and here I am.

I call Mitra who is also in the Berkeley area.

*Commence really exciting part of my story*

This was my first time to the Berkeley area, so it was all new to me.

First Stop: Cafe Gratitude

Mitra blogged about Cafe Gratitude here.

I ordered an “I Am Treasured” smoothie which included avocado, pineapple, lime, and hazelnut milk. Don’t knock it until you try it. Although, I also acknowledge that if I tried to recreate this in my room, it would probably have too much avocado and would just be gross.

Other sampled items include: “I Am Adored,” …

At the end of the meal, the waitress asks us, “What is your gift to life?” (This explains the little placeholder I had while I recovered from the sleepless trip I had to Berkeley.)

Second Stop: Intermezzo

Byline: A four dollar salad feeds four people and stuffs them. =)

Monday and Tuesday were pretty similar days. Four interviews each day with faculty member from both the UCSF and Berkeley campuses. The rest of the time is spent with walking around the campus and the city to get an idea of who the people are.

Now to reconnect this to you and your college admissions process. I will expand on this topic in a later blog entry, but here are a few things to think about as you visit colleges before making your decision:

1. What are the people like? Both your incoming class and the current students?
2. Ask TOUGH questions to the current students, and if you don’t think you’ve received an adequate answer, ask the question a different way or ask someone else. You’re making a decision that will likely affect the next four years of your life. Make sure you don’t have *too many* lingering questions. There will always be some, and it’s normal.
3. Walk around the campus. How do you feel after the tour? What are people doing? Do you feel like you could be one of them?

41 responses to “I am Treasured :)”

  1. bhushan says:

    First Post!!!

    to meet my best best best…………… friend GOD

  2. Anonymous says:

    My optimistic nature

  3. Life is a mystery, not a problem to be solved.

  4. Best gift ……. My Once-upon-a-time girlfriend sent me a I Love You greetings.

    Before that nobody had shown what love is, I had no clue!!

    But I came to know what love was, and had some clues,

    Alas, I have lost it in the blackhole of time!

  5. amjad says:

    Guys if i start a group for MIT 07 applicants at facebook who will join the group?
    what for?
    well, we can just talk there and waste time lol. i mean we are gonna post comments here at mit blogs and there at the group wasting double the time, and that’s what we want. i guess we all want to waste our time at least ’till march 17th smile

  6. Amjad says:

    what do you mean with life anyways Bryan.
    what is it?

  7. Basant says:

    my smile, my honesty, my dedication, my work…

  8. bhushan says:

    madman what u said can be my second gift

  9. Anonymous says:

    amjad what r u waiting for start it

  10. Adam S. says:

    Well, I’m not too sure about my gift to life yet, but here’s a couple of gifts to fellow applicants!

    A timer counting down to decisions.

    The unofficial MIT admissions chat – resurrected! Current MIT students are absolutely welcome!

    Enjoy. grin The chat was a lot of fun & very interesting during EA decisions — hope to see you there!

  11. Aditya says:

    Another countdown to decisions
    This one uses the roman numbers on the MIT dome to give (days:hours) left

  12. Anonymous says:

    Guys I we analyze last years threads…In 2005, international selection had been completed by 6 or 7 march and in 2006, international selection started in these days, so guyz I thinks its all done this time, as MIT has even released a date for decisions much earlier than previous only re-checkin of admitted piles might be goin on these days.

  13. Amjad says:

    I just created a group on facebook. its name is “MIT 07 Applicants”. And hey everybody, i’m gonna accept any add by you guys.
    go take a look at it.

  14. AJ Singh says:

    “What is your gift to life”

    In A.R Rehman’s Pray for me Brother (which I coincidentally heard today for the first time), there is a beautiful line which goes like:
    Life is a blessing, not just a show

    The greatest gift anyone can give to their lives is to make good use out of it, whether for oneself or for someone else. You wouldn’t want to remain, as my dad says, dead pieces of meat. And what my personal gift is will only be known when my life is over.

    Mark Twain says Live life so that when you die, even the undertaker feels sorry


  15. Ormen says:

    I don’t have any gifts. I only give my work all the dedication that is required, but I would not expect that to be unusual in the overachiever- community that MiT is. I strive for perfection.

    I love this Navy SEAL saying; “You just change to perfect – minor adjustments”.

  16. Thuita Maina says:

    Nice question Brian.

    Am one of those people who believe that we are here on earth to make a difference (not money). I want to offer something to life, something everlasting……And guess what?

    You will know if you live long enough to see me shine!!

  17. Anurag says:

    I guess life is a gift to me!

  18. wow, these people have got your blog on lockdown… I just missed post #16 by 1 :(

    And I’ll think about your question after I program this handman game thingie…

  19. Hi I know, I am writing in wrong place, but I remember I saw a post, that said MIT only accepts those guys who call MIT in witty names………

    I just made one… Please let your comments come… tell me how you liked it.

    M.I.T. =
    <li>Madness in mind.</li>
    <li>Innovation, as a result of madness.</li>
    <li>Tempest in the world of science.</li></ol>

    M.I.T. =


  20. Amjad says:

    I just created a group on facebook for MIT 07 applicants. its name is “MIT 07 Applicants”. And hey everybody, i’m gonna accept any add by you guys.
    go take a look at it.
    Join it. it’ll be fun

  21. I wish I knew!!!

    Ankit Chandra
    Gaborone, Botswana

  22. milena says:

    My gift to life is my love for it. I treasure my life.

  23. Solomon says:

    My gift to life is my presence in the world, which is going to make a positive change in my life.

  24. Solomon says:

    My gift to life is my presence in the world, which is going to make a positive change in
    the lives of others.

  25. Anthony Vila says:

    Well, I have 2 answers to that question, if that is okay. My first gift to life is to actually be able to live and benefit others. My second gift would have to be my open mind: I don’t tend to reject other people or their ideas.

  26. Sarab says:

    My existence and the fact that each moment of my existence is a celebration

  27. Hopeful says:

    My gift to life is love for my God, love for my Prophet, and love for my mother.
    I know some of you might find this disturbing but I can’t help it……..I like being religious smile
    Best of luck to all the applicants!

  28. bhushan says:

    hey hopeful
    read mine too for religous one

  29. Meng says:

    My best gift of life is to be me. Everything that exists inside my person always bring me happiness. I love it.

  30. Hanna says:

    Elizabeth d. Am sorry. There seems to b a problem on my side. Am not being able to reply.
    Really sorry.

  31. Pradeep says:

    My gift to life, yet to be given, is fulfilling my role(which i have already found) and creating a landmark.


  32. turnef says:

    This has not happened yet, but my biggest gift to life will be that I will work to elongate it.(if that’s a gift. I am against aging though.)
    I will save human lives in anywhere of the world. (Go Doctors Without Borders!)
    So far, I hope by being an environmentalist I am making life and our world happy (especially after all the recent theories about the end of the world). In the mean time, volunteering is in my opinion one of the best ways for a gift to life. I try to do it whenever I find time. And lastly, my smile. smile

  33. Anonymous says:

    life gives us enough. We are very small to give it something.

  34. Ying Wei says:

    “What is your gift to life?”

    hmm…to me, the best gift is to live my life to full extent,achieve my dream to be a biologist and to help others as much as i can smile

  35. Hanna says:

    My best gift to life is my uniqueness. I am sure everyone brings something particular in the world by their very existence, their very presence….

  36. Hanna says:

    Btw, thanks Adam for the countdown timer.

  37. Chandresh says:

    My gifts = my theorems , for example:

    any two infinitely differentiable functions agreeing on z in a subset of C of the form z = z_1 +/- k(z_2) for ANY k > 0 are equivalent on z_1 + K(z_2) for ALL K in R, such that even if k TENDS to 0 the theorem still holds! [It seems obvious, but certain universality theorems about holomorphics would have one thinkng otherwise.]

  38. Chandresh says:

    + my Zeal. There’s discipline, austerity, honesty and seraphic innocence, but zeal is the most important thing in the universe.

  39. Guyomar says:

    I don’t know if I have given any gifts to life. I certainly have accepted many of the gifts offered to me throughout my existence, but perhaps have not really given anything of great significance back. Some say that my writing has touched and inspired them so perhaps that is my gift.

  40. bonbon says:

    My gift = my absolute perfection…I Jest.
    My real gift is my optimism and all my attempts to make peolple smile : )

  41. Pradeep says:

    hey Brian….

    what was your answer to the waitress’s question??