Seven students break the “MIT curse”

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On the nerdiest day of the year — Pi Day, or March 14 — four lucky Heritage students were greeted with a surprise when they signed into their MIT portals. Against all odds, they each landed a spot at the highly-selective institution. This feat was made even more impressive by the fact that MIT accepted the smallest class in their history this year. 

Coupled with the three students who got in during the early round, the seven total admits finally broke the so-called MIT curse plaguing Heritage since 2014. The maximum number of students admitted to MIT has been no more than three per year, according to Naviance, but this year saw that number more than double. Below, read some of the advice and stories three admits shared:

“Throughout high school, a lot of my activities surrounded the central theme of my intended path: a double major in math and chemistry,” senior Sharvaa Selvan said. As a heavily involved member of the math competition and science bowl teams, it was his consistency, he believed, that made his application shine. He further advised potential applicants to focus on “quality over quantity,” adding: “you aren’t going to have space to write about the five clubs you were a secretary in. Instead, focus on making important memories in your core activities.”

Senior Kayana Coradin had similar advice, emphasizing the importance of “be[ing] authentic… schools don’t want robots.” She explained while she was “a bit discouraged over not having the ‘perfect statistics’ [like straight A+s], [she] made up for it by dedicating a lot of time and effort into [her] essays and doing everything in [her] power to deliver the best and most authentic application possible.”

The Princeton Review recently released its 2023 College Hopes and Worries survey that revealed MIT is now the most popular “dream college” for students. With so much competition, it can be difficult to differentiate oneself from the thousands of applicants. Luckily, supplemental essays provide a way for students to share their true selves. “I felt like my writing supplements were the strongest part of my application,” senior Carolina Silva said. “My voice shone through the most.”

Ultimately, MIT isn’t necessarily looking for perfection; instead, as these admitted students demonstrate, they want students who genuinely care about what they do and express it through their applications. As Silva put it: “There’s going to be ups and downs through the whole college application process… but take comfort that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. You will be accepted into a college, and at the end of the day, you will be okay.”

Senior Kayana Coradin, who plans on majoring in mechanical engineering with a specialization in biomedical devices, was walking her dog when she got the news of her MIT acceptance. “When I saw I got in, I sprinted home while screaming,” she said. “I felt like all my hard work finally paid off.” (Photo/Kayana Coradin)

“At first, I couldn’t believe it,” senior Carolina Silva, who is going in as a chemistry major, said about her acceptance. “I genuinely thought I might be hallucinating the confetti.” (Photo/Carolina Silva)

Senior Ellaheh Gohari is entering her fourth (and sadly final) year on staff and third year as co-EIC of the Patriot Post. She loves learning new things and can often be found going down Wikipedia rabbit holes in search of random knowledge. Outside of room 25310, she serves as co-president to both the Girls Excelling in Math and Science club and the Science National Honor Society. A science-lover, she enjoys exploring the subject through research projects with UMiami, volunteer tutoring with OTTER and fact-checks with MediaWise. She hopes you enjoy your time reading the Patriot Post.