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MIT staff blogger Ben Jones

My First Full Reading Day by Ben Jones

So far you're all awesome, of course.

Here’s what I will see every Monday, Friday, Saturday, and many Wednesdays for the next 4 months…

(Sorry for the bad photo; I only had my camera phone here at the library.)

I sit in the same chair every day and try to look mysterious so that other people in the library will think I’m special.

Perhaps this year I’ll get crazy and occasionally sit at that other table. You know, change it up. :-)

And so far you’re all awesome. Big surprise!

[edit] Just saw the first comment about this all sounding monotonous. The setting? Indeed. But in the same way that a good book can carry you out of your reading chair and into an adventure, each applicant’s folder is a story. When I’m “in the zone,” I don’t notice the monotony of this library, because I’m somewhere in Texas, or Jersey, or California, or…

And you guys are anything but monotonous. :-)

41 responses to “My First Full Reading Day”

  1. glareflair17 says:

    WOW! That sounds so monotonous! But at the same time you do have a lot of influence in the futures of several individuals. I commend you.

    Good Luck!

  2. Sh1fty says:

    to look misterious you have to make faces and laugh out loud from time to time. that will totally confuse people around you :D and you should go like “offcourse!” every now and then. if there is a single person in that library who doesn’t know what exactly you’re doing and is not confused then you’re doing something wrong :D your system seems rather simple, i should have something like that. for now i work in a “creative mess”, and i really do know where every single thing on my desk is (the exact spot in the pile). wait, does this mean that you won’t be traveling for a while?

  3. Keri says:

    Yo. I wish I could read. (Applications, that is. Don’t give me the obvious comeback here.)

  4. Laura says:

    OK, call me oblivious (which I am), but I don’t think I’ve ever seen that location before. Which library is it???

    (Please don’t say Hayden, because I’m there all the time and would be really sad if I were that clueless…)

  5. Hey, Ben! Good luck finding the best class of 2011. I finished applying EA, all boxes checked except Midyear Grade Rept., and I hope you will have fun reading my and all the other Early people’s Apps that arrive at your desk. It’s 75 and Sunny here, how’s reading in Cambridge?

  6. Exciting to hear you’re looking at applications! Unfortunately, the weather here wasn’t so nice, probably similar to Cambridge’s — rained all day(though I prefer frolicking in the rain.) To spice up the day, maybe you could go to the library in a hoody sweatshirt + black sunglasses as to look all mysterious and such — though I wouldn’t know how that might affect your reading smile.

  7. Ah, awesome! Have fun with that; I know I would!

  8. Omar '10 says:

    Have fun with that Ben! I’m pretty sure you enjoy and I hope you’re still reading applications 8-9 years from now when my little brother is applying to MIT grin

    Well, I g2g now, PSETs, Tests and Papers are waiting for me! :p

  9. Arka'10 says:

    Have fun reading for the class of 2011 wink
    Lifes really cool here….

  10. theresa says:

    YAY looking mysterious.. I was watching keith olbermann one night and they said scientists perfected the invisbility cloak… maybe you should just get that and have like random feet sticking out..
    If I saw that I’d probably freak.. haha just kidding smile
    have fun, Ben!

  11. Thuita Maina says:

    Am an international regular applicant. I hope you go through my applications; you will not notice the monotony of the library, because you will be somewhere in Africa, Kenya, Nairobi….

    Thuita Maina

  12. lucy says:

    hmm…just the thought that one of those might be mine makes me nervous…actually….im too sick and tired to be nervous now.

  13. Thuita Maina says:

    I have noted with a lot of concern that the webpage titled ‘The match between You and MIT’ is always being finalized. “We’re finalizing the content for this section; you’ll find it here in a few days. In the meantime, please explore the blog entries to your left for various perspectives on the topic.” This notice has been there for the past four months!!!

    Thuita Maina,
    International freshman applicant.

  14. Sarab says:

    Am now feeling the meaning of fear. I don’t think even Tennesyon light brigade knows the true meaning of it.
    I don’t envy you ’cause of the decisions you’ll have to make.

  15. Sarab says:

    Just re-read a blog you had written before and hell, it brought me back to mother Earth.

    You know what they say about teenage life being a rollercoaster, I have experienced the rollercoaster but once I started applying for college I know exactly what it’s like.

    Sheesh, sometimes I wish there were no bindings and dreams, but as whoever said, its better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all.

  16. Demilee says:

    hi ,find you because of other’s blog ,i like your job and want to be.

    best wish to you!

  17. Anonymous says:

    Hi, just read the old post linked by sarab – absolutely beautiful. I’m curious, is the whole big envelope small envelope thing true, or just a myth?

  18. Amy Liao says:

    Wow, it’s awesome to see the human side of reading. And it’s unbelievably exciting to hear that you actually think reading our applications is interesting and that we’re “awesome”.

    Good luck reading, and have fun!

  19. Kelly says:

    Wow, that makes me nervous, but excited!

    Should I be worried that my secondary school report isn’t processed yet? My school says they’ve sent it…

  20. Stephan says:

    Hi! Will you also review international transfer applications?
    Then you will read about me someday. I am from Germany and I’m so excited about applying to MIT!

    Enjoy it!
    And good luck to all of you!

  21. lulu says:

    BEN ben ben ben ben ben BEN ben ben ben.

  22. Anonymous says:

    is there any wifi(wireless local network) support in the library? I don’t like the wire,oops
    Apple’s laptop is real beautiful.

  23. Ruben says:

    When should the checks next to the evaluations and transcripts appear?

  24. lulu says:

    there is wifi EVERYWHERE

  25. Monika says:

    I think through the essay I really had to think about my life…(sounds too impressive here;))
    so your work must be like getting to know hundreds of people…
    @stephan: I’m german too- i would like to contact you: my email is [email protected]
    @abishek:Yeah, I’m worrying about TOEFL too…

  26. Anon says:

    my second quarter only ends in late january — is that when i should send in my mid-year grade report?

  27. Adam says:

    Wow, thats an incredibly tidy workspace. I suppose once you’ve read something on the order of 10^5 applications, I suppose you start to become efficient. Now.. Character density analysis! I must find out what you wrote for that comment on the screen of your laptop! grin Just joking of course.

    Thanks again for posting. Its amazing knowing how many lives you’ll affect with your work.
    T-minus 30 days, 16 hours, 44 minutes, and 51 seconds.

  28. Edward says:

    Hello.Among those who give responses here,I think I must be a unique one.Because the purpose I came here is to make friends.Well ,I am a freshman studying at DUT(Dalian University of Technology)China.MIT have been my dream since I was at middle school.And at the same time I think more communication with students abroad is necessary for us.So,can we make friends?My email address is [email protected] major is Electronic information engineering&English;.Thank you

  29. Edward says:

    Hello.Among those who give responses here,I think I must be a unique one.Because the purpose I came here is to make friends.Well ,I am a freshman studying at DUT(Dalian University of Technology)China.MIT have been my dream since I was at middle school.And at the same time I think more communication with students abroad is necessary for us.So,can we make friends?My email address is [email protected] major is Electronic information engineering&English;.Thank you

  30. Indian says:

    Dear Abhishek
    I agree with you- Can’t people who score less then 90 speak english? But please keep in mind that you should try to be polite – not because Ben will get angry, but because as Mahatma Gandhi once said it” outside you aren’t known as a Gujrati or a Bengali or Marathi; you are just known as an INDIAN”. Your remarks may negative impacts on the mind of people of other countries about indian students. Please try be calm!
    Your name tells me you are a hindu , so read on.

    “Anger is gateway to hell”
    -Lord Krishna , Bhagvatgita

  31. Saad Zaheer says:

    I have the same question as Laura’s. I kept staring at the picture for quite some time trying to figure out which part of Hayden were you at. Yes, I am also in Hayden so much it makes me forget that MIT has six/seven other libraries. The fact that the picture was taken from a cell phone makes me feel a little better though.

  32. abhishek says:

    hi ben.
    i m a student from india
    i wanna ask u one thing. WHY THE HELL DO U REQUIRE MIN 90 SCORE IN TOEFL(ibt).can a person below this score cant communicate in english or what.the toefl exam can be american student can also get score less than 90.
    PLEASE DO SOMETHING REGARDING IT.plz dont make 90 as a comulsory score.

  33. Karen says:

    there used to be another girl that blogged. Anne, I think. She was Asian…

    What happened to her?

  34. Arash says:

    You use a Mac? I’m disappointed in you, Ben! wink

    Any stats you can give us, like maybe a target date for when decisions will be released? I might feel a bit better if I know exactly how many nanoseconds are left…

  35. anonymous says:

    The library is not even at MIT, suckas!!

  36. Jane says:

    Hi Ben, what do you think about the Jian Li’s case against Princeton?

  37. Anon says:

    hi, ben —

    i took my SATs and ACTs in october and subject tests in november, and asked that all the scores be sent to you guys. however, on my application tracker, they say they haven’t been received. should i panic?

  38. A says:

    BEN —

    when do we get decisions??

  39. Anonymous says:

    when do Regular action applicants get to know ur decision…?..n the ones on the waiting list?…when our tests on our complete course material are taken in jan..which would be after i’ve sent n my application…lcan we send are grade updates?…/email it..or mail an official report?…n updates of other achievments?