Every year, freshmen flock to campus early to explore engineering, play with physics, go hiking, become leaders, observe the stars and — most importantly — bond with their fellow classmates. These Freshman Pre-Orientation Programs (FPOPs) have brought the Class of 2015 on campus a week early to get a brief introduction to one aspect of the Institute.
Even for students who will not be moving into Maseeh Hall, coming back from summer vacation might mean returning to a new and improved dorm space. Both Next House and New House saw major changes over the summer while other dorms, both undergraduate and graduate, have been subject to other smaller improvements.
There will be no East Campus roller coaster this year, revealed Mike T. Nawrot ’12, EC rush chair, in a video released last week. The City of Cambridge required the dormitory to obtain building permits for their coaster, but the process was not completed in time.
Potential members of the MIT Class of 2016 are surfing through a vastly different MIT Admissions website (http://www.mitadmissions.org). The site, launched in 2004, underwent its first major upgrade on July 11. The process involved simplifying access to links formerly hidden on the admissions site and launching the new MIT Wiki (http://www.mitadmissions.org/wiki), which can be edited by any user with an mit.edu email address.
Tired of the same old floor and wing rush in every other dormitory? How about a mixer instead? After much debate over how the Maseeh Hall in-house readjustment lottery will work, a deal was reached between the Maseeh housing advisors and the house government. On Aug. 30, the house government will hold a mixer for all those who have entered the lottery. Immediately after the mixer, attendees must fill out a form indicating with whom and where they would like to live. On the next day, the new roommates move in.
Every year, 13 diseases that affect a fifth of the world’s population are responsible for the loss of 56.6 million disability-adjusted life years and 534,000 deaths. But because these diseases only afflict the world’s most impoverished and powerless people, the international community has forgotten about them.
The massive Hurricane Irene — with wind speeds around 120 mph as of last night — is predicted to hit New England Monday morning, and it could be the largest storm the area has seen for years. The last hurricane to pass within 75 miles of Boston was Hurricane Bob 20 years ago. New York, New Jersey, Virginia, and North Carolina have already declared a state of emergency in anticipation for the arrival of Irene, which could slam New England with winds above 60 mph.
Warren E. Buffett, the legendary investor, is sinking $5 billion into Bank of America in a bold show of faith in the country’s biggest, and most beleaguered, financial institution. It comes amid deepening worries about the long-term health of the company, which has already had to set aside roughly $20 billion to atone for its mortgage misdeeds at the height of the housing bubble.
MOSCOW — Prospects seemed to dim Thursday for a timely launching of a Russian rocket that would carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station next month, with Russian space officials temporarily grounding a similar rocket after one crashed shortly after takeoff Wednesday.
WASHINGTON — The earthquake Tuesday in the Eastern United States was felt at 13 locations with nuclear power plants, from North Carolina to Michigan, but reactors shut down at only one, North Anna in Virginia, 10 miles from the epicenter. There was no damage to nuclear systems at any of the sites, according to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Yet another panel of scientists has found no evidence that a popular vaccine causes autism. But despite the scientists’ best efforts, their report is unlikely to have any impact on the frustrating debate about the safety of these crucial medicines.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, commonly known as the Stimulus, opened the door to many projects in America. ARRA aimed to boost America’s economy out of a recession that plagued the entire world. It paved the way for many things: $90.9 billion for education, with $2 billion specifically for Head Start and a 17 percent increase in the maximum Pell Grant to $5,350, and tax reductions for the middle class by $237 billion. Unfortunately for America, it indirectly led to the emergence of the Tea Party movement. This movement has done nothing productive for America and has only caused further interruptions in the country’s already strenuous democratic process.
Apparently there are more than 6,000 spoken languages in the world, as catalogued and described in the book “Languages of the World”, according to Wikipedia. So it turns out that to be outrageously multilingual, you’d have to learn a new language about every five days, given that you live until the ripe old age of 80 years. However, I would like to inform you of two possibilities you have in this regard:
In high school, many of you were likely involved in some form of student government. Whether as a class officer, a member of the executive board of Student Council , or as a student leader in some other capacity, I’m willing to bet that you left a positive mark on your school. In fact, I know you have. According to the May/June Faculty Newsletter, 31 percent of you founded an organization. Perhaps, like myself when I was a freshman, you are proud of what you’ve accomplished so far, but are wondering where you will find your niche at MIT. With over four thousand undergraduate students at this school, will you be able to have as big an impact as you did in high school? I’m here to tell you that the answer to that is a resounding “yes.”
The Stewart-Colbert rally was a good bit of entertainment in and of itself, but the best bit of comedy to come out of it was a video made by a pair of faux reporters who went about asking the rally-goers “Is Barack Obama a Keynesian?” The attendees, unaware of John Maynard Keynes and his contribution to modern macroeconomics, confused Keynesian for Kenyan; hilarity ensued.
As the 2012 race takes shape, the man that Republicans hope to beat, President Barack Obama, is looking more vulnerable with each passing day. The debt ceiling negotiations have collapsed his numbers, and recent Gallup polling shows him with just a 24 percent approval rating of his handling of the federal budget deficit. His numbers on the economy and job creation are similarly dismal, with approval hovering at 26 percent and 29 percent, respectively. In the other areas tracked by Gallup, his popularity has waned considerably — on Afghanistan, education, and foreign affairs, his approval is at 38 percent, 41 percent, and 42 percent, roughly a 10 point decline in each category from May of this year. Terrorism is the one issue on which the president has a majority approval rating, but even that number, 53 percent, is down 10 points from May, and is conspicuously low, given the recent death of Osama bin Laden. Worse still, there is little upside for the president when the numbers are broken down by party affiliation — there isn’t a single area in which 50 percent or more of independents approve of Obama’s job performance.
While I realize that almost every freshman has some anxiety about their move to their new home, I know that some of you have worries beyond not finding friends, spending REX alone, or flunking out after the first semester (which I’ll have you know is impossible thanks to pass/no record). Some of you also have to worry about revealing an aspect of your identity that you might not even be comfortable with yourself. You freshmen who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender have the added burden of finding a living group and a circle of friends who accept your deviation from traditional norms.
Ravi Coltrane is maybe not for-the-semester music. Sometimes you need a specific cocktail, to regain your dignity, or remember what love feels like, or shake off some encroaching loneliness, if only for 40–60 minutes. Ravi Coltrane isn’t good for that. If I plan on getting work done, I’ll listen to Robert Fripp, or Radiohead. Maybe if I want to feel nostalgic, I’ll listen to Tom Waits or Animal Collective. These are specific cocktails. I enjoy them within a specific context. They are connected to people I know, and places where I’ve drunk them. These songs are the way I dogear the pages of life.
While many freshmen are out exploring the history of Boston or creating soccer playing robots with their FPOPs, new varsity sports players and the rest of their teams are putting their skills to the test and getting into serious shape for the tough season ahead of them. The Tech was able to catch a few fall season varsity sports at practice and visit with some incoming freshmen.
“The ultimate lesson I learnt on my first day of international students’ orientation: Nothing at MIT can be done in a single try.” — This was my Facebook status a year ago when I had just arrived on campus. I admit, after running to the basement of the Student Center twice to get a photo taken for my ID and failing to find the right entry to the MacGregor convenience store, I was exasperated. Throughout my freshman year, I often needed help getting work done in a single try. And as it turns out, help will always be given at MIT to those who ask for it. So dear freshmen, here’s my advice to you:
In winter, melting snow reveals a layer of rich food mainly consisting of insects. This is an open invitation for the geese that have gathered at Briggs Field to take advantage of this delicious opportunity. While this is a feast for the geese, they make a mess on the field. Coyote decoys are occasionally installed to drive away these geese. This picture, taken in the winter of 2010, show geese alerted by the presence of a photographer.