Sunday, March 9, 2008

Here We Go Again *Edit* Nifty Eh?---------------->

Well it's that time of year again. MIT decisions come out next Saturday. (Missing Pi day by 24 hours, tsk tsk.) Now originally I thought I'd write up some long post wringing my hands about how nervous I am (I am), or how excited I am (I am), or how I can't believe it's here already (I can't). But what's really more interesting for me is the journey I've gone on to get where I am just right now. I've met some amazing people along the way, and had an amazing time this year, so since noone has asked, here's my senior year in review:

July- Thanks to reading my Popular Science article about jobs in science, I decided that was my career goal. Prior to this it was a struggle between art and science, two absolutes of my personality. Popular science sealed it for me though, and so I began looking at science and engineering colleges.

August- Registered for High School. Made a list of science colleges to look at, among them : Stanford, Yale, Princeton, Caltech, MIT, and Boston University. Yale and Princeton seem too "stagnant" for me, and Caltech seems boring based off of my friend Kasra who goes there. The Boston Area looks promising and I take a look at MIT. First thing I find out: THEY MADE MINDSTORMS, MY FAVORITE TOY EVER!. Major kudo's. Then I read the mission statement about making a difference in the world through science. MIT becomes top choice for me. I look at what admission requirements are. Heart sinks a little bit. This school is damn hard to get into, but I can do it! Immediately I register for SAT and SAT II (Math II and Physics).

September- SAT rolls around, first time taking it. Bought Princeton Review (I swear by them). Skipped school Friday before so I could study. Wake up Saturday and head to Kelly's Country Kitchen for a hearty breakfast. Sit through four hours of SAT. Scores come back, I did good. Chris is pleased. Mom and I go to MIT seminar in Houston. After essentially being slack-jawed for the entirety of the seminar we both leave really excited that such a place exists. I buy Princeton Review for Physics and Math (The physics one is a terrifying beast) and immediately start studying. Interview for MIT is set up, and I decide I'm applying early action.

October- I'm working almost everyday at American Eagle, and Friday and Saturday nights for Upstage (a construction company, MIT and heavy lifting?) . This continues basically every week for October. Interview with a guy named Alfonso. He works for NASA as a thermoshielding engineer. We talk a lot about MIT. I leave forgetting that I just went to an interview for that school. I thank my theatre experience for making speaking less nerve-wracking.

November- I take the subject tests, and have finished my application. I realize that if I'd known where I was going to apply earlier, I'd have been able to take and retake my SAT's if I was unhappy with the score. Oh well we'll see how we did. Thanksgiving rocks, I eat 10,000 calories in one day (thanks in no small part to eggnog). My friends and I go camping in Brazos Bend:

Beautiful. I make it my mission to catch an alligator. They don't like the cold though, so they are nowhere to be found. I burn my hand on a hot rock and exclaim: "&*%! Jeezy Creezy! How dense is that rock? It's been away from the fire for like 30 minutes!" My friends point out how ridiculously nerdy that is for me to exclaim.

December- My best friend wants to go to Emerson, and if we both went to school in Boston, our schools would be the same distance apart as our houses are now, Crazy! Did well on my subject tests too, the anxiety about it being my only shot fades. Decisions draw near. Decision morning I had completely forgot about them. I had been up since early in the morning working in a warehouse moving things around. I was sweaty and covered in dirt when I sat down for dinner and remembered. "Oh dang!" ran into the room and saw I was deferred, incredibly happy I wasn't rejected. Make a list of things to bolster my application with, among them is to make a video. My friend Sally (Wharton '12 GO SALLY!) tells me her friend Wendi from MIT (and Pearland Alumni) wants to talk to me about colleges. Wendi and I sit down and talk about everything, and she tells me she really hopes I get in, that I seem like a great fit, and that she's surprised I was deferred. This makes me feel good. Talking with her inspires me to push the envelope of what I'm interested in. I make a phone call to the US Department of Energy:

"Hello my name is Chris Mills, I'm an applicant to MIT and passionate about the field of Alternative Fuels. If you have the time I have a few questions I'd love for you to answer for me. Thanks, have a good day"

Can't hurt right?

Two days later I get a phone call:

"Hi may I speak to Chris Mills?"


"How are you doing Chris? My name is Neil Kirschner, Director of the US Department of Energy, are there a few questions I can answer for you?"


January- Finish my video. My birthday comes around! I get the flu. January is bittersweet.

February- AMC comes around. I finish bartending school and am a licensed bartender. (That's how I'm paying for college). I start reading the blogs of Snively. Find him pretty funny. Post on his blog, instantly meet a billion other cool people like Justin, Shruthi, Viva, and others. MIT applicants are pretty cool folk.

March- Decisions come out soon, senior year is wrapping up, I feel happy to be alive and to have been a part of this whole experience.


Awake dreamer said...

Great blog. Sums it up. Add the frequent( frequent?lol) visits to MIT and dreaming how we would 'fit' in.

Anonymous said...

Hey man,

Sweet video! If I was an admissions guy you'd totally have my vote to get into MIT just because of that video:P.

Anyway, this might sound kind of dumb...but, haha I'm loling right now cause of how stupid this is..., but is your name Charlemagne, Chris or Charles? haha..

Anyway... I really hope you get in man and if we do we'll have to hit each other up over CPW!

Shruthi said...

Ah man... Thanks for the mention.. And you are passionate about alternate fuel too? That makes two of us. I even participated in some international seminars to talk about this, and in general environmental awareness. OMG, now just for this, we should get into MIT!!!!!! :)

Wendy said...

This is the first time I have been here.
And I have already noticed that countdown up on the right hand corner.
Good luck to you and also to the rest of the applicants.
I am seriously nervous.

Anonymous said...


Good luck to you too! I'm assuming you applied too? I really hope we get in... I can't get MIT off my mind! I've lost the game so many times... Haha

Shruthi said...

Hey, where did you get the countdown timer from? Can you give me a link? I have one, but its an analogue timer, and it doesnt really work all that well :D

Shruthi said...

N I just saw the video :D Awesome! Seriously :D

Michael said...

New episode of Bing Bang Theory on Monday!

Wendi said...

oh hey - i am actually working in a venture capital firm in china this summer - will be working on investing in cleantech and alternative energy!

i'm glad you're making the connections. =)

okay okay..i'll go back to studying for my math exam now...=P