MIT Reports to the President 1999–2000


The Joint Program of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology offers advanced degrees in oceanography and applied ocean science and engineering. Graduate study encompasses virtually all of the basic sciences as they apply to the marine environment: physics, chemistry, geology, geophysics, and biology. Students who choose applied ocean science and engineering may concentrate in the major fields (civil, environmental, mechanical, and electrical), materials science, or oceanographic engineering. More than 160 scientists/faculty from the two institutions participate in the Joint Program. There are currently 111 students enrolled in the five areas of study offered in the Program: biological, chemical, and physical oceanography; marine geology and geophysics, and oceanographic engineering.

Since all the MIT faculty involved in the Joint Program are members of an academic department, their individual accomplishments and awards are reported through those departments. These include Courses I, II, VI, VII, XII and XIII.

The Report on the Response of the MIT/WHOI Joint Program to the Extenal Review Committee was submitted to Dr. Robert Gagosian and President Vest in November 1999, addressing the challenges set forth in the 1998 External Review of the Joint Program. Specific actions taken to strengthen the program included:

The Response Report also reaffirmed the original Memorandum of Understanding between MIT and WHOI that established the Joint Program in 1968, and noted that high quality education in oceanography and ocean engineering may well be more important today than it was when the program began.

MIT officially joined CORE (Consortium for Oceanographic Research and Education), an organization of 61 member institutions who combine their efforts in order to help educate policymakers and the general public about the benefits of current and future oceanographic research.

WHOI held Commencement Exercises on June 3, 2000 for graduates of the Joint Program. Although commencement at MIT is an annual event, WHOI hosts a formal Commencement ceremony every ten years on the decadal anniversary of the founding of the Institution. Twenty-one recipients were on hand to receive the degrees of Master of Science, Ocean Engineer, Doctor of Philosophy and Doctor of Science. The formal ceremonies also recognized alumni/ae who have graduated since June 1990. Following Commencement, the MIT/WHOI Joint Program Alumni Association conducted a career seminar with current and former students.

More information about this Program can be found on the World Wide Web at—whoi/www/.

Paola Rizzoli, Ronni Schwartz

MIT Reports to the President 1999–2000