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)

Junior Ella Gohari is entering her third year on the Patriot Post staff and second year as co-Print-Editor-in-Chief. After co-leading the Patriot Post last year, she is excited to continue taking the Patriot Post to new heights in the year ahead. She has done research with Mrs. Joykutty since 6th grade, and is now editor-in-chief of the Sigma Xi Science Society’s magazine. On weekends, she volunteers with Village Book Builders and OTTER to teach underprivileged children, and is also peer tutor chair for the Science National Honor Society. She hopes you enjoy your time reading the Patriot Post.