Senior Wisdom: Akhil Mehta
Written by Bwog Staff
Claim to fame: Former publisher of the Columbia Spectator and one time water polo “freshman phenom”
Where are you going? First to Europe with Doug Yolen and Keshal Patel, then to a cubicle in midtown.
Three things you learned at Columbia:
Columbia always thinks of you as a liability, especially when you think throwing oranges at Ruggles from John Jay is a good idea (its not).
For 99% of people on this campus, it is possible to get 8 hours of sleep a night without sacrificing academics, fun, or friends.
How to efficiently model stochastic processes, simulate random variables, assign probabilities to anything, optimally bid at auctions, and manage inventory. These skills are surprisingly applicable in the real world.
“Back in my day…” JJ’s was the place to be and actually had good food, there were hunger strikes, protests, and “bias incidents”, and the Morton Williams receipts said “Welcome class of 2011”…oh wait, that still exists.
Justify your existence in 30 words or fewer: When the Toronto Maple Leafs win a Stanley Cup I will be the guy with the sign that says “Now I can die in peace.” Also, I’ve worn a kilt.
Is the War on Fun over? Who won? Any war stories? I think the seniors won the war on 40s on 40; that was an awesome evening and went undisturbed. I don’t have any personal war stories, a combination of being friends with RAs and abiding by the “if they can’t see it, hear it, or smell it, it doesn’t exist” rule.
Would you rather give up oral sex or cheese? One is a means to an end and one is an end in itself. If you can get the end, I say give up the means.
Advice for the class of 2015:
1) Find an activity that you’re passionate about with people you like. You don’t have to be the best at it, but the people you meet will become some of your best friends at Columbia.
2) Explore the campus – there are tunnels, roofs, hidden study (or do something more scandalous) spots, and a room full of pillows.
3) Live in John Jay – if you want quiet and solitude, close your door. If you want to hang out with people, they’re always around. And you’d be surprised how many people you can fit into a John Jay single; I think our record was 30.
4) Take floor hockey, it’s the best PE class
Any regrets? Not taking a Gulati econ class, missing the 114th Varsity Show, never watching a football game, doing an RA sponsored citywide scavenger hunt sophomore year, not being able to take a language, only figuring out CampusFood was awesome two weeks ago, and only taking floor hockey four semesters.