California Institute of Technology
Letter from the 2014-2015 Caltech Quest Liaison
Greetings from your friendly techers!
I am Netgie Laguerre, a member of the class of 2017 and Quest Liaison for the Caltech QSN Chapter. Have you ever heard the line “It never rains in southern California”? I had not either, until I caught myself staring at the clear blue sky for what seemed to be the fiftieth day straight and dared to ask my upperclassmen for an explanation of this strange sorcery. The pleasant weather and beautiful campus – that indeed was part of the opening sequence for Legally Blonde – are properties that skim the surface of what causes Caltech to be ranked by Time as the #1 university in the world for two consecutive years.
Caltech is a place where students with natural ingenuity can develop and enrich their bright scientific minds – where passions for discovery and research can thrive. The close-knit group that is the QSN family is further extended in the Caltech community. After finishing my freshman year and starting as a s-more, I can confidently vouch for this. With the 3:1 student faculty ratio, it seems the range of possibilities existing for an undergraduate are endless. There are countless opportunities to dine informally with world renowned professors – from Nobel laureates to members of the National Academy of Science and the National Academy of Engineering. They are leading in their fields of research, from polymer chemistry to theoretical particle physics, and sponsorship by our very own ASCIT student government allows these dinners to happen. The odds of performing funded research or receiving an internship opportunity during the summer or throughout the year is definitely in a techer’s favor – it seems nearly half of campus does so each year.
However, the heart of techer of life is truly the one-of-a-kind students that enroll and the culture of creative brilliance that Caltech's small size, rigorous curriculum and decades of existing traditions naturally preserves. The honor code that is succinctly summarized by “no one shall take unfair advantage of another” naturally engraves a habit of teamwork that is fundamental for many fields in science and engineering. Whether it is collaborating on hour’s worth of problem sets or our famous Ditch Day events where seniors spend months creating miniature mazes and silly challenges that will occupy an entire day (and create a lifetime of memories) teamwork is encouraged. The light-hearted pranks we manage to continue to pull even during our busy schedules, such as the MIT mug prank, further goes to show our tradition of working hard and playing harder.
Your Quest Liaison,
Netgie Laguerre ‘17