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How do I get make myself a competitive candidate for mechanical engineering in MIT?

I am currently a junior in high school and I am wondering what I need to do to help me gain an advantage getting into MIT. I am pulled to MIT because it is the top engineering school in the US and I am very passionate about mechanical engineering. Ever since I was little, I was rigorously train in mathematics and I am a musician and I love being creative. I have won the AMC at my school, gotten top grades in math, winning acknowledgement from my teachers, and I have made various competitive band orchestras. I recently gained an internship at GE but I don't know if this is enough and I want to know what I can do more. #college #college-admissions #mit #mechanical-engineering #engineering

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Shayne’s Answer

It sounds like you are on the right track! You seem to have a keen grasps on the essential items that competitive schools are looking for (impressive grades, extracurricular activities, high standardized test scores, etc). I worked in graduate admissions part-time while at school, so I can share with you a few other items that may be helpful!

1. Make sure your resume and/or essay is clearly written! Countless times we would receive essays with typos that were unfocused. Not writing a clear and concise essay that answers the prompt fully is a quick way to lose your chance at your dream school. Editing your essay countless times to make sure you are not making any grammatical mistakes is key. Make sure to highlight your internship, diversity of activities and any other accomplishments that you feel necessary to share.

2. Ensure you visit the school and start meeting with current students and faculty. You want to make sure you meet as many people as possible from MIT if this is your school of choice. Making those personal connections will give you great insight and will provide you a valuable talking-point when interviewing. It also is possible that you end up interviewing with someone you have already spoken with, which would make things much easier!

3. Prepare thoroughly for your interview! The interview is a key piece of the application process, so make sure you have several key examples ready for various questions. The internet has countless lists of possible interview questions; I would recommend going though as many of these as possible. A good tip is to make sure you can speak clearly about 6-7 key events that you participated in. Interviewers are looking for you to describe the situation, your role in the situation and the outcome of the situation. Be yourself and make sure to show personality as well. Coming off as too rehearsed can also be troublesome.

I hope you find these tips helpful. Best of luck!
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much! This is very helpful and I will try my best to follow your advice. Jinsung
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Peter’s Answer

You are correct in your assumption that you will need tp stand out in order to get accepted into a school such as MIT. One of the best ways to do that is to get involved in after-school engineering activities such as a robotics club, popsicle-bridge contest, Future Cities Competition, etc. Take on a leadership role in the club and/or its activities. Another approach is to contact the Public Works Divisions of some local towns or cities. They may have some part-time or summer intern opportunities related to engineering activities.

Good Luck, Pete Sturtevant, PE
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much! This is really helpful Jinsung
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