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History of Rush and Orientation

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Freshman Camp

Beginning in 1926, incoming freshmen could choose to attend Freshman Camp, where they would spend a weekend at a camp site with some representatives from the upperclassmen. The purpose of Freshman Camp was for the freshmen to get to know each other and bond as a class, and for them to learn about the Institute through several talks given by leaders of clubs and other organizations. Freshman Camp took place at Camp Massapoag and later at Camp Wonderland.

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Freshmen Weekend In 1949, the issue of relocating Freshman Camp to take place on campus began to be discussed, and a committee was formed to make a decision. For the freshmen entering in 1949, it was eventually decided that the Camp would take place partly at MIT and partly at Camp Wonderland; it would be more focused on introducing freshmen to all the Institute's activities than in previous years, and it would include tours of labs and dorms.

In 1950, Freshman Camp was completely relocated to campus and was renamed "Freshmen Weekend." Students in general were unhappy with this change, but it was deemed necessary because the freshman classes were now big enough that there was not space for all of them at the camp, and it also significantly reduced the cost to participants.

The Activities Midway was introduced in 1964. Freshmen Weekend was expanded to four days in 1965.

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Rush week

definitely existed in 1944, some controversy over IFC's decision of when to officially schedule it

what's "Summer Rush"??

International students

Sorority recruitment

sorority recruitment ... used to be at the same time as Rush, moved in 2002?

R/O week In 1968, a motion was passed by the IFC and DormCon to create Residence/Orientation Week, commonly referred to as R/O Week, which would combine the fraternities' Rush Week with activities hosted by the dorms. Previously, dorms had not had any recruitment-like process, and freshmen visiting the dorms learned about the buildings but not so much about the people. R/O Week existed until 2002.

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Housing lotteries

how have students been assigned to dorms in the past?

  • temp assignments used to always be temporary, everyone moves to FSILG or enters new lottery
  • option to stay in temp assignment was introduced at same time as FOC -
  • beginning in 2000, incoming frosh rank dorm preferences and that affects summer lottery assignments

i3 introduced in 2001 -

Freshmen On Campus

The decision to require all freshmen to live in dormitories, referred to as Freshmen On Campus or FOC, was made in 1998 and implemented beginning in 2002, though it was suggested as early as 1989. The proposal in 1997 was spurred by the alcohol-related death of freshman Scott Krueger in a fraternity.

The reasoning behind Freshmen On Campus is that living in dorms will allow freshmen to interact with a wider variety of people and to be closer to all the resources of MIT. Proponents argue that the decision to live in an FSILG is bigger than the decision of what dorm to live in, and that Rush is too short and busy for freshmen to make a well-informed decision. Opponents argue that freshmen are capable of making their own decisions and that it is important for students to be allowed to live in the group they feel most comfortable in. The controversy over when to hold Rush has existed since at least 1949, with some people suggesting that FSILGs should not be allowed to recruit members until after the students' first semester or first year.

For the first few years(?) of FOC, MIT gave a financial subsidy to FSILGs to make up for the loss of membership. [when did Rush happen, how did it affect]

Although FOC is an official policy, MIT does nothing to enforce it. As a result, many freshmen actually do move into their FSILGs, and many more live part-time in their dorms and part-time in their FSILGs.

In 2010, a petition was created to demonstrate support for allowing at least second-semester freshmen to live in FSILGs. The petition was signed by hundreds of members of the MIT community, but ultimately did not result in any policy changes.

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Residence Exploration, or REX, was introduced in Orientation 2003. [...]

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 "[Two Days Reserved For 'REX'.]"  February 28, 2003.

Orientation changes in 2011

In January 2011, the UAAP announced a plan to significantly shorten Orientation beginning that fall. After much student outcry and discussion with administrators, particularly because of the threat to REX, it was announced that Orientation 2011 would follow the same schedule as that of 2010 except for International Orientation, but students still suspect that administrators might try to shorten REX in the future.

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