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MIT student blogger Anthony R. '09

So, you’re applying to college. by Anthony R. '09

If you’re applying early (to MIT or elsewhere), you’re probably nearing the tail end of your paperwork. If you’re applying regular action, you probably aren’t.

For well over a year, from my rural roost, I sort of idealized MIT. The more I read, the more I learned, the more I wanted to live here and study here. Who wouldn’t want to be in the center of the world’s technology research, with the world’s brightest minds, in the urban locale of Boston and in the cosmopolitan Northeast? “In.” If only I were to get in, I thought, I’d be set. My life would be made. And I’d finally be the heck away from the desert.

But it wasn’t immediately obvious that beyond the new bedroom, the different desk, and the temperamental window shade, I’d still be the same person underneath. I still like trains and I still enjoy panini sandwiches with fresh basil. I still like sleeping late on weekends, and tears, smiles, and hugs still feel the same to me. The tools and responses and personality I’ve developed over the course of my life make me who I am. College will just lead me to another logical stage of development, one of career plans or just a new direction in which to mosey.

I’d be the same person with the same ambitions, interests, and traits had I decided to attend any other university or college, even my local community college. If you’ve got your heart set on a specific school, take a few steps back and ask yourself why. If you’re thinking about MIT, your answers will likely be forthcoming and copious. But if you wind up somewhere else in the end, just remember that you’ll be successful wherever you go. It is you that makes you, not your school. :-)

27 responses to “So, you’re applying to college.”

  1. Carla says:

    That is exactly how I feel about MIT, the more I read and learn about it the more I want to attend there… but I am not sure if I’ll make it… Hope I will though. Excellent entry, I think you are explaining exactly how many people feel about MIT

  2. Kristin says:

    Wow, I guess I’m repeating what several people already said, but that just about hit the nail on the head. It’s true that it’s really important to remember that it doesn’t matter too terribly much where you go, just what you do wherever you are. I keep forgetting that in my craze over MIT – thanks for the reminder.

  3. Anonymous says:

    MIT: more than a dream university, the place where I want to spend the next four years of my life

  4. Christina says:

    Take it from someone who *knows*…there is more than one “perfect” place for you, despite what you may think. Wherever you go to college, the chances that you will be severely unhappy are preeeetty low. Basically anywhere you go, you will find your people.

    That said, good luck EA applicants!

  5. Catherine says:

    Thanks for the reassurance. =)

  6. Same feelings, Anthony. Spot on.

  7. Sam says:

    I feel the exaclty the asme way. The faculty, facilities, everything about MIT amazes me. MIT has everything I want in a college city life, research opportunities, and the facilites. I hope I get in but if I won’t I won’t be devestated; there’s still grad school.

  8. A small hint of hope, in possible failure.

    I’ll tell myself this after I get deferred.


    But then again, I’d do well to follow your advice.

  9. I had a blog post similar to this at some point, but regardless of logic, it still hurts when you get a decision you didn’t want. Why? Not because it ruins your life, but merely because you spent so much time on it (writing the essays and pouring your heart out, that is).

    After the fact, you realize that it really doesn’t matter that much where you go. What matters is what you do with the resources you have available to you. There is “furniture” here just as at any other school; they are just much fewer in number.

    And that’s comforting.

  10. MIT; Fantastic University both academically and in the social and sporting arenas. What more could one want? And in Boston! There is absolutely no other city that I’d prefer to spend my young years in.
    I know about Boston from my best friend who’s in Boston College, as well as my father and grandfather… who both studied at MIT! haha

  11. Keith Mosher says:

    Even though it has been already been stated, I just want put in my two cents and say that I am feeling the same thing right now. I too am stuck in the desert and the more I learn about MIT, the more I want to go. Hopefully, I’ll get in *crosses fingers* *uncrosses fingers to continue working on essays which should have been done by now*, if not, I guess I’ll take this post to heart and be happy wherever I go.

  12. S M Nawaz. says:

    Nothing except one thing amazes me about MIT thats MIT develop brains into superbrains by the quality of education it provide, i myself think that getting into MIT is something challenging a superbrain….this is one of the reason i would like to be a MIT student someday {IA}.

  13. ladyaphelion says:

    I concur as well. I hear often enough the words, “You’ll be successful wherever you go.” Well! I certainly hope so. Nevertheless I’ll keep dreaming that “wherever I go” will be MIT. I’ve long dreamed of learning at MIT and I know I’ll benefit from the chance; still, I can get by wherever I go. I’ll just be so much happier to do it all at my dream school.

  14. thekeri says:

    Well, that made me feel a little better. ^_^

  15. OJ Jackson says:

    I think the same way you did Anthony, I live out in West Texas, and while I love Texas, MIT is my dream school. I like almost everything I’ve ever read about the place; my only reservation is the food. It will be very hard for me to get used to the boston food. Out here it is a rare meal that doesnt include jalepenos or serranoes. Up there it’ll be different.

  16. Pia says:

    seriously, you never know where you’ll wind up you guys. I never really thought I’d get to MIT…I didn’t HAVE a dream school. I basically picked MIT because it was a letter that made me scream (I kept recycling other ones by accident). So this is a message for people who DON’T know: it works out for you guys too.

  17. Pia says:

    ok, wait, this is for all the people who love MIT, sorry! Don’t worry, they can tell. trust me, you think sheer desperation is unattractive? maybe in a bar, but not at MIT. I think that works for other stuff too actually…=P

  18. Cem says:

    So is anyone else just counting the days till mid December? It’s not frusterating, but it messes with my mind. One day I think, “MIT needs me; MIT wants me.” The next day it’s “How did I ever stand a chance?” If only, if only…

  19. Anthony says:

    Look at it this way — mid-December is finals time here tongue laugh

  20. Bassem says:

    You know what ? i dunno if i feel the same way as you feel, you know when someone want to be important and different then the others but for some reasons he can’t ?
    for example i’m pretty good in computer stuff but for a reason my grads aren’t so well to let me go to MIT but still i’m trying my best.
    I know 6 different programing languages but what will they do for me. I think if i can’t get to MIT my whole idea of going to college will be changed, my thoughts will be blown away with the wind, i know there are other schools and universities but this one is special, since i first heard of MIT i set my way to make my best to enter it and be a part of the best reaserch facility. If your grades are reasuring mine are not and i’ll count the days till this letter arrives.

  21. Bassem says:

    but again life is life, and not all your dreams come true…

    [Don’t think i’m a desperate i’m still holding a tiny little candle of hope smile ]

  22. Cem says:

    Still counting… My angst has lessened. Light a candle for me too. smile

  23. Vijay says:

    Nice post…I feel the same way about MIT. Going elsewhere would be fine I guess, but theres nothing like working and learning with the best! Good luck you guys, you all deserve good news in december.

  24. Rose says:

    Ha, yah. Everyone said exactly what I was thinking, but very nice entry. I’m still scared out of my mind…

  25. asim says:

    i m applying to MIT. i belong to underdeveloped country. i dont have any brilliant student
    i want someone to be my friend
    [email protected]