Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Admission: MIT

At an Admissions event for alumni in May 2010, MIT gave some insider tips about getting in:

  • International experience of some kind is beneficial.

  • Preference for problem-based thinkers vs. discipline focused people.  An example being someone who says they want to solve a problem or do research on a particular subject (energy, medicine, etc.) as opposed to someone who is interested in studying physics.

  • “Hands On” problem solvers

  • Leaders

  • Provide examples of collaborative efforts on a project

  • Sense of humor

  • People who want to take advantage of the strength of the university to do things they have never done before and can express the reasons why MIT will be a good place for them

  • Academic talent

  • Special qualities they will bring to MIT—a talent or attribute, such as a community leader

  • Looking for examples where students have taken the initiative to do something

  • Creativity

  • Resiliency—trying and failing at something - did you learn from it and persevere?

  • Joy & enthusiasm

  • AIME is helpful (American Invitational Math Exam)—only offered to the top 1% of math students in the country

  • Applicants need to do the work and make the calls.  They do not want to hear from parents during the Admission process.

  • No preference on activities—want students to do activities they love.  They can tell when they are only doing things to look good on an application as opposed to doing things they truly enjoy.

  • The interview is very important.  They want students who are confident and can communicate well.  The interview demonstrates the level of enthusiasm and joy the student has and what their interests are and whether MIT will be a good fit for them.

They are really looking for students who stand out and are passionate about learning and being members of the community.

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