The bezel of the 2020 Brass Rat features MIT’s iconic mascot, the beaver, at the heart of the MIT-Boston landscape. The beaver, sporting its very own Brass Rat, unifies itself with our class and simultaneously presents in his right hand a representation of our unified world. Instead of proffering the typical representation, the globe the beaver offers to the wearer exhibits Pangaea, symbolizing the diversity of our student body and the notion that although we are all from different places both domestic and international, we make up and stand for one world. The beaver sits upon a dam of branches where Pi is inscribed, a tribute to the memorable date when many of us were officially admitted to MIT.

Falling off of the dam and into the river are 8 ivy leaves and a pinecone, symbolic of those who have fallen beneath the engineering prestige of MIT. The Massachusetts Avenue bridge displays the 153rd smoot mark to herald that we are the 153rd graduating class. Binary in the railings of the bridge spells out “.5 2 HE,” an ambiguous reference potentially indicating that our trip across the bridge is a journey taken either “halfway to heaven” or “halfway to hell”. At the end of the bridge, a tent welcomes the user, much like convocation, One World, and many other MIT celebrations do for our student body. To the right of the tent, there are three banners around the Lobby 10 pillars, emblematic of the opportunities for open discourses as well as the safe spaces for a diversity of opinions fostered in and around MIT’s student body. Above the banners and below the 2020 plaque are two hackers who know that one should never hack alone while setting up the eye chart hack that introduced us to MIT on the first day of our freshman year. In the bezel, the hack spells MIT’s traditionally ambiguous acronym, IHTFP.

Proceeding to the right of our bezel, we have Stata, Walker, and the Green building as quintessentially recognized MIT buildings. On the Green Building, students play the revived tetris hack that takes place during the exciting introductions REX and CPW provide to prospective members of our MIT community. Above the bridge, we have included an accurate depiction of Boston’s solar eclipse, a noteworthy moment that occurred the summer after our freshman year. In the background, the Boston T crosses the Salt and Pepper Bridge over the Charles River heading toward Boston, alluding to the occasional trips that students take to explore the world outside of MIT’s bubble.

On Boston side, we have the Esplanade, the Prudential Center, the Custom House Clock Tower, the Citgo Sign, and classic brownstone buildings. Looking closely, there are people on the Esplanade running, biking, hammocking, and relishing in the synthesis of nature with the energy of Boston. The Prudential exhibits 24 floors, mirroring the 24 majors of MIT. Upon inspection of the Clocktower, the two letters of P and T represent the two pathways that we follow when it comes to MIT’s workload, punting and tooling. Furthermore, the Citgo Sign behind the brownstones stands as a historically conserved Boston landmark recently recognized during our Freshman year.

In the sky, the North Star symbolizes the entire community that have graced the 2020 class, and the direction that we have found here at MIT. The star stands as a tribute to those of our classmates who will not be with us in person on graduation day, but will always be a part of our community.


Our Class Shank showcases the Great Dome with our graduating year in Roman numerals across the top. With trees flanking the sides, Killian Court sprawls into the foreground. Whether napping on the grass or gazing out the window, students see Killian as a place to relax and enjoy nature. Gravitational waves make up the tufts of grass on Killian Court to celebrate the momentous Nobel Prize awarded to MIT’s Professor Weiss and other researchers in October 2017. This research and direct observation of gravitational waves confirmed the last prediction of Albert Einstein’s century-old theory of general relativity. This observation brings us one step closer to understanding the universe. In the foreground, the Greek goddess Athena (and the namesake of MIT’s computing environment) strikes a triumphant pose. Athena represents our accomplishments and never-ending pursuit of knowledge. Adorning her breastplate is a ferocious Kerberos, the mythological protector of Hell as well as our school’s network security system. In her right hand, Athena thrusts forward her spear with a fiery drive toward progress. The spear, adorned with a spacecraft to commemorate SpaceX’s successful landing of the Falcon 9 reusable rocket our freshman year. This successful launch, along with many other technological breakthroughs, brings humanity closer to our future in the cosmos. Athena extends a helping hand to someone in need. Although all of us have had our fair share of ups and downs at MIT, we are surrounded by a community that will help us get back on our feet. Our Class Shank stands as a testament to our class’s innovation, camaraderie, and passion for making the world a better place.


Historically, the Seal Shank has always been proudly brandished with our school’s name, and engraved with our school’s seal in the center. The traditional seal depicts both a craftsman at the anvil and a scholar with a book, each resting on the same pedestal to reflect the cooperation between knowledge and practice. Together, they represent our school motto, Mens et Manus, or “mind and hand”. The motto is printed on a flowing banner at the base of the seal. Sitting on top of the pedestal is a lamp and a flame in the figure of a ‘20,’ to signify our class’ burning drive for innovation and progress.

This year, the seal’s craftsman is represented by a member of our own class, Ironheart. Marvel’s new superhero, Riri Williams, is said to have built a suit of armour in her Simmons dorm room by reverse-engineering technology from an old Iron Man suit. While fictional, her story is representative of the incredibly creative endeavors occurring in dorms all across campus. Also notable in Riri’s inclusion is the divergence from the traditional seal, which has until recent years only depicted two males.

Rising in the sky behind our school’s seal is the same night sky that will be see on graduation night. Complete with the full moon that will illuminate campus that evening, the sky is also flanked by the big and little dipper constellations. Symbols of beauty and direction at night, the Dippers point towards the North Star, a figure meant to always guide you forward. This represents the lofty goals and ambitions that direct and motivate all MIT students.

Finally, encompassing our seal are the wings of a Great Owl. Mirroring the Athena on the opposite of the ring, the owl represents wisdom and the distinctly nocturnal habits of MIT students. The owl is composed of the same letters that make up the Alchemist statue sitting across from lobby 7. These letters conceal the symbol of S cubed, a campus program that lends support to much of our student body as they experience the inevitable challenges we all come to face. The alchemist lettering also exemplifies the intersection of arts and sciences at MIT, an identifying aspect of our school that parallels the diversity of our student body.