I’ve joined many clubs at MIT. I can’t say I was active in all of them, but I gained a lot of knowledge and met some cool people. Every semester, I’ve realized the importance of clubs and social groups on campus. And every semester, I tell myself to spend more time with them. Slowly, I felt more and more comfortable leaving the dorm and spending time with other people. It’s a tricky balance when you have challenging classes, but it is a tradeoff that I didn’t regret.
Here are the clubs I joined and a few random memories with each of them. If you know, you know.
MIT Chinese Students Club (MITCSC)
There are many different cultural clubs on campus. And I joined CSC, becoming cultural chair, and then social chair. One of our goals was to provide opportunities for students to meet other people on campus and celebrate cultural events. In my first year, I organized a Night Market, celebrating the mid-autumn festival. I was in charge of finding performers and planning the event. I found it strangely exciting but also tiring and draining. My favorite performer was Alex Hattori and his routine (google it). The other people in the club were pretty cool too! We had 2 YouTubers, ABBs, really smart physics majors, a few athletes, and tons of dancers. Retreats and business were also fun. But probably the best was the swag designs we got. Also, the unfortunately of the Portugal trip (but also the music video we made), all the dinners I made with CSC, Utopia (a Boston boat cruise – what a blur) were we almost got scammed by Harvard CSA, tong hua, xue mao jiao (great songs), and attempting to hang up lights and buy floating inflatables @Alex at Lunar Banquet.
HackMIT (Part of TechX)
I’ll eventually write a post as a memorial to all the time spent here, but I was a part of HackMIT for almost three years. I’ve gotten so good at knowing how bad my code is. The week leading up to HackMIT is one of the stressful and memorable weeks of my life. So many last-minute changes, talking to sponsors while tipsy, photocopying 300 pages in the middle of the hackathon, running around looking for Rinik to fix the WiFi, placing pamphlets into 1000 tote bags, trying to get people to try out Yerba tea… Jessica showing up to CR completely red-faced, making our jank HACK sign (what do you expect when computer science majors attempt to make a physical sign?) by spray-painted at night in front of BC and then stolen the next day. John from IBM riding around in his scooter and light-up glasses, students crowding around sponsor tables and diving as sponsors threw free swag… wow.
MIT Asian Dance Team (ADT)
I joined because another friend was also auditioning. It was fun and also a low commitment activity. I got into KPOP because of that and also got slightly better at dancing. Although I didn’t make new friends, I had a great time learning how to do body rolls (I can’t say I mastered them). Maybe it was because I didn’t practice. Learning about what clothes I should buy, borrowing the rest of my outfit (lol), being blinded by the performance lights, getting super into KPOP, and watching random dance videos on YouTube.
Baker Exec (Student Government)
Haha, this was a great time. Buying boba, Cheesecake Factory cheesecake, and yogurt on other people’s money! Talking about how to spend more money to increase engagement, buying 500 ice popsicles on a whim, listening to rooming drama, and best of all, getting free food at meetings…
Other clubs on campus!
You can visit http://midway.mit.edu for a complete list (I made it back in the day with a few others for virtual CPW!).
One other memory with Student Information Processing Board (Sipb): I went to a few meetings in my first year, so I wasn’t actively involved. But I liked how quickly the secretary takes notes (blazing fast WPM), and also other, other other, other other other…
If I could only give one piece of advice to an incoming college student, I’d say: “join clubs and meet people!”