Skip to content ↓
MIT student blogger Jessie L. '07

Spring Break post by Jessie L. '07

Hi, readers. Congrats to those of you who got in. I remember when I got in. It was my first college decision, and I was so excited, and so surprised – I had not expected it at all! Enjoy your victory, but remember that admission just means that you got your foot in the door. It’s not the end in itself. Take advantage of what MIT has to offer you, because there’s a bunch of kids who didn’t get your spot.

For those who didn’t get in – we’ll all be there at some point, whether it’s other college applications, grad/professional school applications, job applications…there are many opportunities in life to not get in to someplace where you wanted to be. I was turned down by three of the ten schools to which I applied for undergrad. You’ll have the chance to succeed wherever you end up. It hurts, but you’ll be fine.

I’m going through the job-seeking process…I can empathize with the applicant pool. At least you guys get to see statistics on numbers of applicants, percentage accepted, and stuff like that. :)

I haven’t done a Q&A in a while. I’m sure that the new admittees, and possibly others, have questions. Feel free to post your questions as comments on this entry, and I’ll answer them. It saves me having to be inspired in order to blog. ;)

40 responses to “Spring Break post”

  1. Mick says:

    First post, YEEEEEEEEEEEEES!!!! I’m so pumped for MIT!

  2. Jeremias says:

    First post. Can’t wait for CPW.

  3. Jeremias says:

    Oh… beat to it.

  4. Amelia says:

    What fields does course 9 include? Primarily biology? Chemistry? Mathematics? A little bit of everything?

    Thanks-it’s really fun to read your blog!

  5. Anna says:

    Do you know anyone at MIT who came from a rural area or a small, noncompetitive high school? I’m a little worried about how difficult it might be to catch up academically!

  6. Abhishek says:

    Hi. I feel sad to say but its reality that i am a loser who failed to got in. But i have decided that now my only aim is to get in MIT so i need your little bit help.
    I am an international applicant from India and i will be taking admission in IIT Bombay this year. I dropped my one year after school to get admission in 1 of the best college like MIT. Do you think that besides high end academics in college MIT give preferance to college reputation for transfer students?

  7. Abhishek says:

    Can you please provide me some helpful tips and suggestions for transfer application like what areas are important in college before applying to MIT etc. Also it will be extremely helpful for me if you can make me in contact with someone who was also a transfer applicant and got admissions. I can ask him some questions through mail. My address is [email protected]. Please request someone to give my madness some time as MIT is not a college but a passion for me. Thanks a lot.grin

  8. Daniel says:


    I’m from Lawrence County High School in Lawrenceburg, TN. I hope that answers your question. lol! I’ll be right there with you!

  9. Christina says:

    Anna: I’m a senior at MIT who went to Grangeville High School in Grangeville, Idaho (pop. ~3500). Catching up was tough (I’d never seen calculus), and in some ways I still feel like I’m behind (though how much of that is due to my background and how much is due to inherent flaws in the way I work/learn is an open question).

    My biggest piece of advice is to know when and how to ask for help. Work through problem sets with as much of your own brainpower as you can, but do ask friends for ideas and problem-solving strategies when you’re stuck (within your course’s collaboration policy). When you get help from a friend, demand that they explain their statements, rather than just accepting their help without building a better understanding. And talk to a TA, a tutor, or a professor as soon as you don’t understand the concepts that are being taught in class. There are a lot of resources out there that I definitely wish I’d taken advantage of instead of keeping my head down and hoping to muddle through.

    You’re definitely not going to breeze through things the way you did in high school, and you’ll need to adjust your time management accordingly–no more “I’ll do that assignment in an hour the night before it’s due”, if you value your sanity.

    The freshman classes (calculus, physics, chem, etc) are definitely available in varieties suited to a less comprehensive background, and will get you up to speed just fine as long as you stay on top of the material and get help when you need it so that you actually retain what you learn for later use at MIT.

    MIT is hard! But you learn so much! And you get to do REALLY COOL STUFF, like building robots! And the experience of actually having to work at something is a really valuable one. I go back and forth on whether I’m glad I came here, but most of the time I really do think MIT was the best choice I could’ve made.

  10. jinjin says:

    I don’t know how much you know about this, but can you please tell me about the music program? Especially for pianists.

  11. anonymous says:

    Did you want to go to those 3 schools you got rejected from?

  12. Kate says:

    Hey, I was just wondering if many people got straight A+’s or 7’s (I’m in IB). Am I likely to still be considered if I get mostly 6’s (B+/A-)? Thanks in advance!

  13. Laura says:


    I currently attend Flagstaff High School in Flagstaff, Arizona. It is not as rural as some areas, but my high school doesn’t offer many AP classes, especially sciences. I’m in the same boat. See you at CPW!

  14. Ramya S. says:

    Ok, I’m going to be unlame and actually post on here. I read your blog, I don’t really have a question, just wanted to say I read your blog and I met your friend Maggie a couple weeks ago when she came to Texas! I think this is a pretty neat idea especially since students get a chance to ask questions to current students. I wish I had talked to more students when I was looking for schools.

  15. Anna says:

    Thanks for the advice, Christina! Difficult but do-able is what I’m hoping for. Alright Daniel and Laura: Let’s do this!

  16. Melissa '11 says:

    Kate –

    I have an average of one B a semester with all other A’s. I don’t have IBs, but of my APs, I have two 3’s, a 4, and a 5 (5 being the highest). I was accepted early. From my understanding, MIT just uses grades/scores to see if you’re CAPABLE – A/Bs and 6s on a scale of 7 show that. It’s the rest that really matters.

  17. Kate says:

    Sorry to be a pain, but would taking Music instead of Chemistry hurt my application at all? I enjoy music (I’m a violist) an infinite amount more than Chem. But then, other universities might look down on it for an engineering applicant. Not everyone can be so lucky as to be admitted to MIT.

    @Abishek, you’re not a loser if you even bothered applying! It takes guts to take a risk like that.

    On topic: good luck getting a job Jessie!

  18. I wasn’t one of the applicants this year nor do I know any rejected applicants so please do not take my comment as an attack of any sort (because I really do think it’s extremely difficult to decide who takes spots in MIT’s classes). But I really don’t think it makes rejected applicants feel any better when you say you got rejected by 3 schools out of 10, that’s only a 30% rejection rate. Also, you got accepted to MIT! Something these students will most likely never experience. I’m not sure if your way was the best way to go to sympathize with rejectees.

  19. Paul ('11) says:

    You have a good point, DA – but the fact of the matter is that every rejection hurts, no matter where it comes from. I think it’s helpful for people to realize that everyone, even MIT students, has been through some kind of rejection. (Besides, Jessie didn’t mention which three schools she was rejected from – for all you or I know, they could have been her top three choices.)

    Personally, I think it will always sound awkward for a current MIT student to try and console someone who didn’t get in. But I will say one thing: at least she tried.

  20. Kasienia says:

    Why is MIT better than CIT?