He has his personal Instagram account. He stars because the featured profile image on MIT Admission’s Facebook web page. When MIT’s Campus Preview Weekend 2022 got here round, he joyfully opened his arms extensively to welcome the admitted Class of 2026 at a campus picture sales space. You could find him in every single place on campus, from murals and posters within the MIT Welcome Middle to laptop computer stickers, pins, and keychains on a pupil’s backpack.
No, this isn’t MIT’s iconic mascot, Tim the Beaver. That is Extensive Tim, an lovely beaver character who loves MIT, acquiring width, and injecting some levity into MIT life. Rumor has it that Extensive Tim double-majors in consuming and sleeping, however his sole mission is to make folks comfortable and smile. And by all accounts, he excels at his job.
Extensive Tim is the brainchild of senior Tianyuan (Margaret) Zheng, a double main in Course 18 (Arithmetic) and 6-14 (Pc Science, Economics, and Information Science), with a minor in music. Rising up in Qingdao, China, and later Cellular, Alabama, her love of the humanities has at all times been as sturdy as her love of arithmetic.
Zheng aspired to attend MIT ever since her first campus go to at age 10. “I keep in mind seeing professors, college students, and hundreds of posters for every kind of actions on the Infinite Hall — I used to be mesmerized. I assumed, ‘there are such a lot of issues to do right here!’” says Zheng.
Along with furthering her research in arithmetic, economics, and laptop science, she naturally gravitates towards artistic shops to mix her technical pursuits with creative endeavors. She is the co-founder of a comedic Instagram account with Gloria Lin ’22 and juniors Audrey Cui and Penny Brant, which explains complicated STEM ideas with artwork, humor, and love.
Extensive Tim was born as a by-product from that web page throughout the week of Valentine’s Day on an @mitadmissions guest post. As MIT Admissions started to undertake extra drawings of Extensive Tim in collaboration with Zheng, his recognition grew quickly amongst MIT college students.
“Extensive Tim has develop into a sort of unofficial illustration of our mascot with all of his stats maximized: friendliness, cuteness, potential hug-ability,” says Chris Peterson, director of particular tasks for MIT Admissions and Pupil Monetary Companies. “What started as a small piece of digital fan artwork posted to the Admissions’ Instagram account to welcome the 2024s to campus for his or her first in-person semester has expanded, each actually and figuratively, to embody all the group, as infinite because the eponymous hall itself.”
Peterson, who has labored with Zheng to create extra supplies that includes Extensive Tim, isn’t shocked that the rotund beaver has been such a giant hit with present and potential college students. “It’s easy physics: attraction is instantly proportional to mass, in order Extensive Tim turns into bigger and bigger, folks love him increasingly.”
Because the character gained momentum, Zheng created an Instagram account for Extensive Tim to advertise artwork and creativity on campus. She companions with many student-run artwork and cultural organizations that depict Extensive Tim taking part in quite a few campus occasions, freed from cost. “I needed extra folks to know that MIT not solely excels in STEM, but additionally encompasses such a wealthy assortment of creative abilities, quirkiness, and tradition — and on high of this, MIT college students know learn how to have enjoyable.”
Extensive Tim just isn’t Zheng’s first expertise in MIT artwork organizations or beaver drawing. She has been an govt board member of The Borderline, an artwork membership that created MIT’s 200-foot-long, augmented-reality mural tunnel, in addition to an artist on Ring Committee 2023, a 12-student committee chosen by every class to design a unique MIT ring for his or her fellow classmates.
In her free time, she likes to improvise on the piano, typically throughout jam periods organized by McCormick Corridor, the place she additionally serves as a co-president. “I’ve to confess that I’ve over-committed each semester,” she says, “however I really like my communities at MIT a lot, that I always wish to do one thing to make them even happier locations to be.”
With some further assist from Extensive Tim.