Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, or MIT for short, is a college name commonly heard among students.  It usually holds the connotations of a prestigious school full of extremely intelligent scholars.  In plain statistics, this holds true for the most part as a large majority of accepted applicants have 4.0 unweighted GPAs and SAT scores above the 2100 mark.  The school was founded in 1861 and is situated in Cambridge, Massachusetts with the goal to educate students in science, technology, and other features of the 21st century. The private university emphasizes discovery and stimulation next to their intense academic studies.

The school was originally proposed by William Barton Rogers who wanted the institution for rapid scientific and technological advances.  The thought of MIT being a school was not the first priority for Rogers and thus the school became heavily focused on research and laboratory work.  Over time, MIT progressed through time to the excellent university we know today with splendid achievements including the invention of the transistor radio, the start of the biotechnology field, and the minicomputer.

MIT is known especially for its advancements in engineering and the physical sciences.  As of recent times, MIT is also growing great biology, economics, management, and linguistics departments next to the engineering and physics studies.  MIT has also received a multitude of Nobel Prizes with most of them in sciences. Besides the sciences, MIT has won prizes in medicine, economics, and peace.  Some names of these winners include MIT alumni Robert S. Mulliken who won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1966 for his early development of the molecular orbital theory and Andrew Fire who won the Prize in 2006 in Medicine or Physiology for the discovery of RNA interference.  There are many other Nobel Prize winners at MIT besides these two who should be recognized for their discoveries and advancements, but the rest of the MIT research awaits.

I myself can see myself studying in either the School of Engineering or School of Science if I were accepted into MIT.  In the School of Engineering, I would likely take a course in either Biological Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering,  or Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.  The courses in Biology and Physics caught my interest as well in the School of Science.  In all of these courses and departments, MIT's goal can be seen once again in their desire to discover and expand their respective fields.

The Dreyfus Building
The architecture of the MIT campus is extremely diverse with its campus divided into four major regions of architecture: the Boston campus, the new Cambridge campus pre-World War II, the Cold War development, and present day buildings.  The buildings hold a commitment to a minimalist style while still expressing cheerfulness.  There are many buildings and monuments to see including the Great Dome, an imitation of the Pantheon of Rome that is commonly referred to as "The Center of the Universe" constructed in 1916.  More recently constructed in 1970 is the Dreyfus Building meant for the research in the Department of Chemistry and has a monument nearby in front of the building.  Since I could not find a description of the monument anywhere online, I would like to find this building and hopefully find out the history behind it.

The Brown-I cohort will be visiting MIT during our first week in Rhode Island, and I am really looking forward to this well-known institution of technology.  The many architectural styles of MIT and the strong emphasis on discovery really made me interested in MIT, a school that I once knew nothing about aside from its name.  

There are likely many stories and a lot of information about MIT floating around the internet, and I'd like to find all of it if I could.  The old school seems to have gathered its fair share of history all of which looks to be worthwhile to read.  However, the night is short and I've been rambling on enough it seems, so with that this post will come to its end.

1 comment:

  1. Brandon, how fantastic is it that MIT is the home of the biotechnology field, and you will be studying techniques in biotechnology for your program? Perhaps that was an obvious observation, but I just couldn't hold it in.

    I am impressed with the research and synthesis you have done here. I am also a sucker for interesting architecture, and the Dreyfus Building pictured above seems to have a definite modern aesthetic. Looking forward to our site visit after reading this!