First things first: there was another home football game today — at which I cheered and Sam trumpeted — and, due to a malicious ball of burning gas 93 million miles away, I am now burned to a bright red crisp. On one side of my body.
Given that this is New England (42o north latitude) in late September, and that I was outside from 2PM-5PM, I’m pretty sure it’s physically impossible for anyone but me to get a sunburn. And yet, sunburn I did.
Anyway. This entry is a PSA for the Overnight Program, in which you, the prospective, get to experience MIT life minus the hard work. And we, the MIT students, get to show off our lives to a willing audience. (Once you’ve been at MIT for a while, there are only so many non-MIT people who are still interested in the minutiae of your MIT life. My grandmother, for instance, would much rather hear about that nice boy I’m going to marry than 7.31. Prospectives, thankfully, are not quite so boring.)
Some things you might want to do on a visit to MIT include —
- Take a campus tour (duh).
- Eat in the Student Center. I’d personally advise Anna’s Taqueria or Alpine Bagel over Lobdell Food Court… but maybe you’ll feel differently. (When I was a prospective, I ate at Lobdell because it was the only place I could remember the tour guide saying there was food. And I still decided to come here. So the food must not be that bad.)
- Sit in Killian Court and enjoy the sunshine (hopefully).
- Attend some classes! Going on a college visit without sitting in on some classes is like going to a world-renowned restaurant and using the bathroom. Classes given this term can be found here; it might be best to sit in on freshman-level classes like 18.01/18.02, 5.111/2, 3.091, or 8.01.
- Stay up late with your host (who is probably a lot more nocturnal than you are — when I came on my visit, I promptly fell asleep at midnight. My host stayed up until 4 AM working on an 8.022 pset, and thought it was hilarious that her prefrosh had conked out in what was to her mid-afternoon). See what life is really like here. Meet people. Check out the dorms.
I’ve been advised by Ben that pictures of my shirtless boyfriend in this entry might be a good way to lure people to sign up for overnights — so, girls, come on an overnight so you can stay with me and stare at my boyfriend! (Guys are welcome to come stay with my boyfriend and stare at him too — we’re both hosting.)
To sign up for an overnight, log into MyMIT, then click on the “Overnight Program” link in the left column. Super fun for everyone!
Edit (because Nehalita asked some stuff that I really should have covered!): After you request the date you want to stay, you’re matched up with a host by your/the host’s interests and perhaps a few dimensions of personality (the hosts fill out info about themselves, and you fill out info about yourself — it’s like eHarmony.com!).
Eventually, a suitable host is found, and you are given each other’s contact information so you can chat about getting to campus and other logistical stuff, like what to bring for bedtime (if you stay with me, for example, you only need to bring a pillow, since I have a couch you can sleep on. But depending on where your host lives, you could be staying on a spare mattress in a lounge or something, and might need to bring a sleeping bag). Your host will probably also advise you about how much spending money you should bring for meals, and perhaps the best way to get to campus; when I was a prospective, I was flying — alone — into Logan airport, and my host realized that I was very scared of being in the city by myself and told me to take a taxi rather than the subway. Good choice.
When I came here on my college visit, I had already been accepted. I came by myself, because flights from Ohio to Boston are godawful expensive, and stayed at Random with my host, Molly ’05. I ate lunch at Lobdell (noted above), attended 8.022 (Physics E&M for masochists) and 7.013 (Intro Biology), and took the campus tour. But what I really remember are the conversations I had with people — I talked with the Random president, who was course 9, about what course 9 was all about; I talked with a lot (it seemed to me “all”, but probably not) of Random residents about MIT life; I talked with a bunch of ESG kids about choosing MIT over a full ride to state school.
I guess my 24-hour visit to MIT was really what made me feel comfortable coming here. Before my visit, MIT was this very frightening, brilliant, prestigious place in my mind — after my visit, it was somewhere I felt comfortable. Suddenly, I was in this place where there were lots of other smart kids, and they were all nice and reassuring to a very scared prefrosh, and I knew that MIT was where I wanted to be. (Cue schmaltzy music, I suppose — although I really am feeling very goopy and nostalgic over this right now.)