OTC student is first to attend MIT

OTC student is first to attend MIT

Friday, May 24, 2013

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Two years ago, Amado Antonini and his brother, Robert, came to Ozarks Technical Community College from Venezuela to get their GED.

Now, after two years in the College's Honors program, Amado Antonini is about to continue on his dream to become an engineer. He received word by email earlier this month that he had been accepted for the fall enrollment at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Antonini is the first OTC student to win a place in the prestigious educational institution.

"I am super excited. I can't believe it. If you told me when I came here that I'd be here today talking about going to MIT, I wouldn't believe it but we've done it," he said.

Antonini, who worked as a tutor in the Speckman Tutoring and Learning Center and has a 4.0 GPA, had perfect scores on the SAT's mathematics and physics tests that led to his admission at MIT.

"I studied to solve the problems. It took me a month of studying along with studying the formulas for physics," he said.

Todd Yerby, director of the honors program, said he's confident Antonini will do well at MIT.

"Transferring to MIT will be an exciting experience for Amado.  He will do very well there and I can't wait to see what the rest of his college and professional paths will hold," Yerby said

When Atonini, who will likely study mechanical engineering, found out he had been accepted, his brother was almost more excited than he was.

"I was trying to take it all in and Robert was jumping all around," Amado said.

The brothers came to the area two years ago to get an American education and came to OTC because of mutual friends they had living in Bolivar. They share an apartment in Springfield. They've shared a few classes together but never sat together in class.

Heading to MIT later this summer will be an exciting time for Amado but also a sad time. He will have to be separated from his brother for the first time since they came to America.

"That's a downside," Amado said. "I have to leave everyone I met. We have a nice group of people from the calculus and physics classes who are friends. I will come back and visit," he said.

Amado will leave with a fondness in his heart for OTC, which was the springboard for his educational future and possible career.

"Everywhere I went on campus somebody wanted to help me. I would recommend OTC to anyone. It's all good here," he said.