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I was feeling much better today, so I decided to go to the BAMIT alum meeting. I'm glad I went. I enjoyed myself, saw some people I hadn't seen in many years, and met some interesting people.

One of the people there was a SIPB member back in the 1980s. I didn't know him well back then, but I had seen him around. (He's mentioned in the SIPB minutes I found some time back.) His wife, who entered the 'tute the same year I did was also there. Her personality hasn't changed a bit. There was another guy there from the class of 1976 who used to recruit for HP back when I was a student; he is now the national BAMIT chair. Another guy from the class of 1985 talked about how Jim Gates' Interphase classes helped him. (I was not in Interphase, but I remember going to J-Hat's 8.01 reviews. Jim Gates' physics was harder than 8.01 physics; more like 8.012.)

There was a lot of socializing but also some business. The woman who organized the meeting would like to see it become a regular thing with a variety of activities. (Apparently there was a SFBA BAMIT chapter back in the 1990s, but people moved away and it was disbanded. I don't remember hearing anything about it.) Various ideas were tossed around, such as more social events (hiking, biking, more bbqs); cultural events (arts, theatre); and various outreach programs to junior high and HS students. Some of the people suggested card playing and talked about how they learned some card games while at the 'tute. I mentioned how I used to play penny-ante poker sometimes with people who lived a floor below me, and also how I played a little bridge with EECS computing facility staff. (nessus may remember the guys who developed bridge programs; one a multi-player game and another with impressive graphics on Lisp machines.) kennita was there also; she suggested going to a jazz club. (BTW, happy birthday!)

In case you were wondering, I behaved myself – didn't flame about how hard MIT was or anything like that. (However, I think if I did not have a job right now, I might have felt ashamed; some people have done really well for themselves.) I would like to go to future events, time permitting. (I didn't volunteer for any of the student outreach; my own MIT experiences aside, I don't know if I could encourage students to go to MIT because of the high cost of tuition.)


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 28th, 2008 01:19 pm (UTC)
Starting this year, anyone with a family income under $75K and typical assets (about 30% of all MIT students) will have all of their tuition covered (where "covered" also means "grants, not loans"). If family income is under $100K, they don't consider home equity when calculating the EFC. It's not a bad deal. And they finally reduced the expected self-help contribution for students in general (by 10%), which I was pushing for them to do back in 2005-2006.
Aug. 1st, 2008 07:59 pm (UTC)
It's still a lot of money for students whose families don't qualify for the grants. IMO, the current economic conditions make it risky to incur a large debt at a young age.
Aug. 15th, 2008 01:13 am (UTC)
For example, see Laura Rowley's It's Time to Rethink College Debt.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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