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MIT blogger Elizabeth C. '13

Just A Small Town Girl by Elizabeth C. '13

Blogging in an awesome world.

Well hey there, blogosphere. Newbie #4 here. To the admissions officers here, I’m known as the girl who draws things during class and has a somewhat-creepy fascination with all things Irish (I know, it’s only week 2 of being back and Matt McGann and Chris Peterson have already called me “quirky and special” – translation: “why’d we hired this creeper?”). But [hopefully] to you guys, I’m Elizabeth – just your average course 20 (biological engineering) sophomore (whaaat, I’m not the baby of campus anymore?? Crap.) here to tell you about life at this “quirky and special” place.

I was born and raised in Columbia, MO – home of the Mizzou Tigers, Shakespeare’s Pizza, and the Kewpies (naked baby dolls that were my high school’s mascot. Seriously.) – located smack-dab in the middle of the U.S. While it’s definitely not as hick as it gets, I’ve gotten stuck behind tractors driving to school, hit deer, etc. I couldn’t fall asleep my first night at MIT because of the sirens and seeing the Boston skyline out of my window was a bizarre thing to get used to. But in addition to the people I met from Zimbabwe, NYC, and D.C., I found fellow midwesterners here with whom to reminisce about corn mazes. (And to reinforce stereotypes with, apparently.) On top of that, moving to a big city for college ended up giving me the best of both worlds – I’m a 10 minute walk away from the best parts of Boston, but I still get to fly to my awesome hometown for breaks.

Sometimes I think my path to MIT wasn’t a very normal one, but I’ve realized after meeting so many people during my freshman year that there really isn’t a “normal path” to MIT. I dreamt of becoming an entomologist and herpetologist from third to ninth grade (and admittedly, I still secretly dream of becoming an Animal Planet TV show host). I idolize Jeff Corwin like a nerdy MIT kid (eh, okay, I’m one to talk) idolizes Stephen Hawking. I flirted with the idea of a small, hipster liberal-arts college for most of high school. It’s not as if suddenly I woke up one day wanting to be an engineer – I just realized, over the course of my junior and senior years of high school, that the stuff I dreamed of doing as a kid was stuff that I still wanted to do… with a little more science thrown in. I now get to study all sorts of bio-tastic things (not just snakes and bugs!) as a course 20 major, and while I’m not exactly reading Plato under an oak tree (some folks here do, though!), I suppose I could be found reading about Duke Ellington and Miles Davis in the lovely Killian Court last year (I took Jazz History and Jazz Harmony and Arranging, but I’ll have to save that story for another post).

Despite being a science nerd, my life’s really not all that enginerdy. When I’m not in class, you can find me at home (Simmons Hall), playing cello in the symphony and Chamber Music Society, UROPing in Professor Bhatia’s bioengineering lab, chilling with my fellow Tech Catholic Community pals, showing off my child-care provider skills at the MIT Daycare, practicing for my future career in stand-up comedy, jammin’ with my musician hallmates, or – as of now – professionally blogging. I enjoy a good book of imagist poetry every now and then (see – my liberal-artsyness is still intact even after coming to the institvte). I occasionally sleep as well. (Just jokes! I actually get around eight hours a night, believe it or not.)

I’d talk more, but I have a p-set to turn in and class to go to. In the meantime, tell me what you guys want to know more about – classes, dorm life, the admissions process, etc.

P.S. Hi mom!

16 responses to “Just A Small Town Girl”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Welcome ~blogger~ and Unicorns heheh I Love them too!!

    Do i now get to say 1st smile yayyyyy

  2. Maita '13 says:

    I’m going to creep on your blog now. I promise I won’t scare away prospective students, though. wink

  3. Crystal says:

    …who took the midday train going to central square?

  4. Anonymous says:

    I just went to your blog and I love the little illustrations smile

    Anyways can you write about classes or the admission process in future blogs?

  5. Kristin '11 says:

    YOU’RE FAMOUS now!!!

  6. mom says:

    Hey, Elizabeth! Did you take the picture at Simmons Hall?

  7. oasis '11 says:

    can i super-like crystal’s comment? i seriously like lol’ed for a full minute at that!! :p

  8. Your sketches are definitely happier than what I see in the above link and this one grin

  9. Your sketches are definitely happier than what I see in the above link and this one grin

  10. Your sketches are definitely happier than what I see in the above link and this one grin

  11. Steph says:

    You UROP for Bhatia? That is sooooo cool! I would absolutely love to work in her lab. When I first applied to MIT (rejected), I wrote about her in my admissions essay (along with Dava Newman). Please write more about what you do in her lab. smile

    Welcome to the blogs btw!

  12. Alina '11 says:

    Course 20 FTW! Welcome to blogging!

  13. It is so SURPRISING!!!! YaY!!! I draw in my textbooks too, and my mom was never pleased with me about that.
    When I read about you a few days back, I showed my mom that even MITians draw in their textbooks during class and I wasn’t doing anything wrong. Thank you for that. (BTW my mom is still not convinced….never mind)
    Yeah I would very much like to know how you got into MIT
    And oh, WELCOME!!!:)

  14. Nadia ('15?) says:

    yessss, another course 20-er!!!!! welcomee

  15. JDM says:

    tehehe, I’ve also gotten stuck behind tractors on the road to school (never during my commute though), have to worry about deer (I haven’t hit one, but my mom has), and also love corn mazes. Glad to hear that I wouldn’t be the only one if I make it.

    Of course, I live in central Maryland and actually live slightly over the border here between hickland and civilization but this still made me laugh.

  16. @ mom: Yes, I took it in the Simmons Hall ball bit. (Yes, I live in a college dorm that has a play-pen. So what?)
    @ yetanotherhopeful’15: The key is drawing stuff that’s actually relevant to what the notes are on. I do it as a way of staying focused when class gets kind of… eh, you know.
    Thanks for the feedback and welcome love, everyone. I’ll definitely be keeping this stuff in mind over the semester smile