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MIT staff blogger Matt McGann '00

New Year Notes by Matt McGann '00


Happy 2006, everyone! Before heading back to the office tomorrow, here are a few notes…

  • Some folks from MIT and NIST further confirmed that, yes, E=mc2.
  • The new mayor of Edison, NJ, Jun Choi ’94, was sworn in today.
  • Jun’s MIT classmate, Jeff Ma ’94, has started an “athlete stock market,” according to an article in the Los Angeles Times.
  • The new Technology Review had a number of interesting MIT articles, including this article about MIT’s top faculty members, the Institute Professors.
  • During the break a couple articles were published about the MyMIT blogs:
    The Blog Squad, Technology Review
    Colleges using blogs to attract students, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
  • And finally today, a little trivia contest (props to the good folks at Hopkins Insider for the idea):
    1. In order, what were the five most popular home states for admitted students?
    2. What was the most popular male name and the most popular female name of students admitted early?

41 responses to “New Year Notes”

  1. Kallie says:

    Q, you’re stealing my thunder! ;p

  2. Steven Lu says:

    1. MA, CA, NY, TX, FL

    2. Michael, Jessica

  3. Considering we have the wonderful 2010 Guestbook, it just takes a spreadsheet (well, I used a database, but I like to make things fancy smile and a little number crunching to answer the questions:

    [EDIT: Quentin’s guestbook data temporarily censored, to keep the trivia guessing fun & entertaining… -MM]

    Of course, this is only data from the guestbook, so it’s only about 2/3 of the whole class. These numbers are based on the 212 people who are currently in the guestbook.

    Matt, I did some nifty things with the guestbook data, but I’m not sure how to share it – I don’t want to post anything in the blog here, because the guestbook is password protected. How might I share stuff? Among the things I’ve made from the data are an AIM buddy list file to add all the 2010’ers to your buddy list and a collage of all the uploaded pictures to get to know people. On my todo list is a Google Earth file of where 2010’ers hail from.

    I’d really like to share what I’ve done, but I don’t want to share it with anyone who doesn’t already have access to the information – do you have any suggestions?

    Thanks for all you do,


  4. Anonymous says:

    1. CA, NY, MA, FL, IL

    2. Michael… and… uh… Sarah?

  5. Caroline says:

    That Anonymous post above was me.

    I have a sort of random question… Would a student ever be denied the request to defer acceptance from MIT to complete a 13th year of high school abroad? I want to, because I’ll graduate when I’m 17 and I don’t want to be the youngest person (again!) in college.

  6. Kim says:

    There are usually a decent number of 17-year-old freshman… If I’m accepted anywhere, I’ll probably be entering college when I’m 16 or 17. (Not that it doesn’t still make sense to complete a 13th year abroad… just that you wouldn’t be too unusually young.)

  7. Masha says:

    Quentin, youre my hero smile

  8. 1. NY,NJ,PA,MA,FL

    2. Sam, Christine?

  9. “The new mayor of Edison, NJ, Jun Choi ’94, was sworn in today”

    see? we jerseyans are smaaart

  10. Kristin R. says:

    The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article uses a quote from a comment I left on Bryan’s blog…about acceptance to MIT eclipsing my birth! A bit more embarrassing without any context, but still really cool. All I do is brag to my friends about MIT Admissions’ accessability.

  11. Haha, Quentin did the same thing I did last year (I think Anthony did this last year too). Awesome.

    Also, “Admissions officers post that they listened to the new CD from the group Resonance, ate Indian food for lunch or went to see “Harry Potter.””

    Awesomeness. smile


  12. Anas Maghfur says:


    Female: Emily

    Male: John McClane

  13. zoogies says:

    I’m going to guess CA, NY, MA, FL, TX and for names…Sam, Jen? Trivia games are fun, and as was that article’s recounting of Mr. Nance “eliciting names for his son” XD

  14. Rebecca says:

    Just for fun, gonna take a guess…

    CA, NY, TX, MA, TJ

    Michael, Kristin ?

  15. Rebecca says:

    *NJ, not TJ…oops

  16. Somehow, I don’t think NV was one of those lucky states. :snaps fingers in disappointment:

    My guess for the states would be:

    MA (of course), NY, CA, TX, and… :points to random state: YOU!… I mean PA.

    Sorry, guys; I just couldn’t bring myself to pick FL.

  17. Nalin K says:

    1) NY, MA, CA, NJ, PA

    2) I like Michael…but my official guesses are Christopher and Ashley.

  18. Anonymous says:

    First of all, I would like to wish the whole admission team, you and Ben a very happy and prosperous new year!

    Secondly, I must remark that MIT’s application status system is THE BEST i have seen out of all the colleges i have applied. This trully shows how much consideration and seriousnes MIT gives to each and every applicant. No wonder it can pick out the true gems out of the pack (a quote from my teacher). MIT is really at a class of its own.

    Thirdly, i just wanted to ask: how would you compare the admission process and selectivity of MIT with University of Cambridge. Is it possible that if a person is rejected from Cambridge, he might not get into MIT?

    Thanks for your time and consideration.

  19. mugho pine says:

    CA, NY, MA, TX, FL

    Dan/Daniel and Steph/Stephanie? (with Emily in 2nd for the girls?)

  20. Kenneth Wong says:

    Class of 2009:

    Nothing regarding the third, fourth, or fifth greatest represented states though.

  21. Michael B says:

    I hope they keep the names statistics from last year. Maybe I’ll get in on that alone, just in case they need another one. But any ideas? Why do you think that the names Sara, Michael and David are so popular in our generation? Or maybe it’s not the clothes, but the name that makes people who they are?

  22. mugho pine says:

    Kenneth, you’re spoiling the fun tongue laugh

    I’m still supporting my number 3, 4, & 5 states. And the names are from me spending far too much time counting through the guestbook instead of searching for useful links like that one.

  23. shikhar says:

    hi matt,

    so whats up at the office these days. Well I was kinda wondering if u could suggest some cool science stuff one should do if he’s taking a gap year (I know we have to decide that ourself) but there’s a friend of mine who didn’t know about US admission procedures and is therefore taking an year off coz he could not apply this year. So he was looking for some ideas on what academic stuff (apart from ones likings) do people do usually if they take a gap year.

  24. Dave says:

    Hey Matt,

    I clicked on the link to your archives (older blog @ and well, your site has been severely vandalized.

    The comments are extremely obscene :( … you should really remove them (uphold MIT’s pristine image and all smile )

  25. gradstudent says:

    Yeah, there are lots of 16/17-year-old frosh, but I’d finish out my 13th year if I were you, especially if you’re sick of always being the youngest one. I was in a very similar situation (got US HS diploma after 11th year in 12-year baccalaureate program) and I am still very glad I finished my baccalaureate before going off to college. I got to really enjoy the process (if enjoying two weeks of written and oral exams is at all possible) because I knew I was doing it only for my satisfaction and still had my ticket to college no matter what my final score.

    I’m pretty sure any request for deferral accompanied by a reasonable plan for what you’ll do in the meantime (whether that’s finish another diploma, do service work, work on the family farm, or dedicate yourself to your music/sport – anything other than “sit on my butt and watch TV for a year”) will be respected.

  26. Edward says:

    Hi Matt!

    Thanx for advising me to wait coz now my two teacher recommendations have been processed and I’m getting hopeful that the school report and test results will also be processed soon.

    Thank you.

  27. thekeri says:

    1. MA, CA, FL, NY, NJ…no, scratch NJ, make that TX.

    2. Jessica, and…. I don’t know, Michael?

    And hey, don’t discount Florida all that quickly!

    Last week, some of us got together just to meet and hang out. There were seven of us. We knew of at least four more who couldn’t make it, and that was in South Florida alone. ^_^

  28. Anonymous says:

    Hello and Happy New Year to everybody. In the additional information section of my application, I describe a digital image that I created. My description highlights all the features of the painting I wished to discuss – but I now feel sending a copy of the image in would complement my description and enhance my application.

    I am aware that the focus of the supplementary question might only be describing the work…and I now find myself at a crossroad…

    Would the MIT Admissions Office welcome/accept a copy of the image I describe, if I send a copy by mail (the image is small and on regular printer paper)? Should I submit the copy, having the opportunity to?… or would sending the copy create a hassle?


  29. Dear Matt


    My evaluations and transcripts have all been processed. That’s a major relief! Thanks to all of you down at the admissions office!

    One question. I’ve sent a few photographs that I had taken, as part of the supplementary materials. Although q.13 asks us to describe a thing your created, well, i didnt know what to write about the pictures as, well, to use a cliche, a picture is worth a thousand words. Do i have to send any thing else describing those pictures?



  30. s says:

    A question:

    I think I mailed my ISFAA to Room 3-108.

    Where are we supposed to send the Financial Aid materials?

  31. Hello, Matt,

    One of the teachers who wrote my recs had to be out of the country for much of December, and therefore did not make the deadline. Will it still be read? Is there a cutoff point at which you no longer look at official (not supplemental) stuff that we send? Please let me know.


  32. Janice says:

    Hi Matt!

    I had my two teachers send their evaluation letters in the beginning of December, but my app tracking shows that the letters haven’t been processed yet…

    And the same things goes with my SAT scores(frome December).

    Should I be worried or should I just wait a while?


  33. Hi, Matt

    My name is Juan Jhong Chung. I am international applicant from Peru. There is no currier service in my city so my father traveled to Lima, the capital city, and send my transcript and the two recomendation letters from my teachers but he sent them with his name on December 29 by DHL. The problem is that in the application tracking system, it says they haven’t arrived yet, so maybe it is because my name does not appear on the envelope. What can I do to be sure you have recieved these material and that you know it is mine. When I sent this question to [email protected], they told me that you were on holidays and that I have to wait until January 3rd. I know you are very busy this time of the year. I apologize if I am being a little bit impatient. Thank you very much your help.

  34. Manisha says:

    Here’s wishing you an awesome NEW YEAR. You= all of MIT Admissions, Simmons and Anna’s, etc etc!!!

  35. Linda says:

    I was just wondering- both of my recommendations were postmarked (or my teachers swear that they were) two weeks ago. I’m a bit freaked out that the onlne tracking says that they haven’t been processed yet. Is this normal? What do you think that I should do?

  36. TCM says:

    Hi Matt

    I have already have the two evaluations sent to the admission office.

    Lately, I have completed proving a theorem (in Maths), of which I was really proud, so I decided to send it to MIT as the creation. The problem is my work was done just 3 days before the deadline so I dind’t have time to rewrite it or fully translated it to English ( what I sent to MIT wa such a mess, and my English is also not really good). Is this supplemental documents accepted after the deadline.

    I also showed my work to my professor. Though he said that the problem had no real meaning (for had longly been proved before), he got excited by my perseverance and the way that I found solution (this one is a bit beyond my knowledge). He suggested that if I want he would sent a recomendation letter to MIT

    Mail to US is extremely costly , can I send the supplemental document and ask my professor to send the recomendation letter by email. I think that this is the most easy way to do that.

    Best regards.

  37. Okay, I put some stuff up. Look up my guestbook entry in MyMIT to find the link smile


  38. Jess says:

    Aw, crap. Please let the most popular female name NOT be Jessica. We have three in my lit class. My teacher calls it his Jessica class. “I say the name Jessica and half my class looks up!”

    I should change my name to something cool. Like Jamonga. No idea where that came from.

  39. Victoria says:

    I remember seeing the article in the NYT about E=mc^2. I’m so glad Einstein was right… C:-)

    You started a trend!

    Not sure about the states. I’m pretty sure it includes NY, MA, and CA, though.

    If my letters of rec were sent in on the same day (separate envelopes) and one of them is recorded and the other isn’t, should I have my teacher resend it?


  40. KT says:

    Hi Matt! I have two questions to ask.

    1. Would it show on the application tracking site whether or not the admissions office received a supplementary material I sent in?

    2. If it says that I still haven’t had my interview, when in fact I have, should I start worrying? (My interview was on October 20th)

    Thank you!

  41. Anonymous says:

    What is the absolute last date for receiving the January test scores? Please be specific.