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The Saratoga Falcon

College decisions bring joy and sadness to seniors

Shukla Keerti 12 102557

Since she was a child, senior Keerti Shukla has gone to MIT a countless times when visiting her aunt and uncle, who both work at the school. Although she had walked through the pristine hallways of MIT on multiple occasions, Shukla’s desire to attend MIT became concrete once she decided to pursue a major in engineering.

“It became my dream school after the fact that I wanted to major in something science or engineering related,” Shukla said. “Then it was like, MIT would be an awesome place to go.”
Shukla applied to MIT early for chemical engineering, but was deferred in December. Her disappointment was intensified by some of her friends’ successes of getting into their dream schools early.

“I didn’t expect to get in, so I was relieved I didn’t get rejected. But at the same time I wish I got accepted because then it would have been a lot less stress until now.”

Having gotten deferred, Shukla was forced to wait another three months for her admission status. As the MIT decision notification date approached, Shukla built up much anticipation.

“MIT sent me an e-mail a week before saying it’s coming out at this time on this day, so up until then I was waiting because I knew exactly when it was coming out, so that was very stressful.”

Like Shukla, dozens of seniors felt a mix of anxiety and excitement upon receiving news—sometimes good, sometimes bad—about their dream school this past month.

Although senior Gavin Chu, whose top school was UCLA, was prepared for rejection, he was still disappointed when he received the news. Less than two weeks later, however, Chu was pleasantly surprised to receive admission into UC Berkeley.

“I’m feeling kind of mutual about Berkeley right now,” said Chu. “It’s a really good school, but it’s not my dream school and I don’t really know what’s going to happen.”

Berkeley, who in past years was known to be much more exclusive than the other UCs, accepted
many students who were rejected by UCLA or even UCSD. Top-tier private schools, particularly the Ivy League, have increased selectivity with soaring application rates and record low admission rates.
For Shukla, her stress was slightly alleviated when she received an e-mail from UCLA notifying her of
admission into the school a few days before MIT released its email.

“I had gotten into UCLA, and that relieved the pressure a little bit because I would have been more than happy going to UCLA. It wasn’t that stressful when I was checking MIT, because if I don’t get in it’s not like I don’t have anywhere to go.”

On March 14, at exactly 9:26 p.m., Shukla checked her e-mail and found in her inbox the much anticipated letter from MIT.

As she opened the e-mail, she saw the words she had been waiting to hear: “On behalf of the Admissions Committee, it is my pleasure to offer you admission to the MIT Class of 2015!”

“All that stress paid off junior year and senior year,” Shukla said. “Even though school is still stressful—whoever said second semester was easy, they lied—it’s like part of the stress is relieved. I don’t have to worry about college anymore.”

Although Shukla has heard from other private schools, MIT is still at the top of her list. After going through these arduous process of college admissions, Shukla advises juniors to remain optimistic.

“Don’t stress if you’re a junior because everything works out in the end. Work hard, but don’t stress out too much.”

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