Universities in the Digital Age—Dinosaurs or Prometheans?
Taking the Fork in the Road
If there is one experience common to every university president in the United States during the past decade or so, it is being accused of leading institutional dinosaurs down a path to rapid extinction in a digital age. Peter Drucker has decreed it. Editorial writers have shouted about it. Alumni and trustees have stated it. Some of our own colleagues agree.
The issue is simply stated. Does the future of education, learning, and training belong to a new machine-based digital environment, or will the best learning remain a deeply human endeavor conducted person-to-person in a residential campus setting? I believe the answer is Yes—to both.
We are at the proverbial fork in the road where we should, and will, take both paths.
There is not an ounce of doubt in my mind that the way we learn throughout our lives is and will continue to be profoundly influenced by the use of digital media, the Internet, the World Wide Web, and devices and systems yet to be developed.
We will inhabit continually evolving electronic learning communities, in which amazing new technologies will help us learn. Cognitive science, virtual environments, and new modes of interacting will all come into play in powerful ways. We will extend educational opportunities to people throughout the world in a more cost-effective manner. On-the-job, just-in-time learning will become the norm in many industries. And there will be new players in both the for-profit and non-profit educational domains.
But there is even less doubt in my mind that the residential university will remain an essential element of our society, providing the most intense, advanced, and effective education. Machines cannot replace the magic that occurs when bright, creative young people live and learn together in the company of highly dedicated faculty.
The residential research-intensive university will not only survive, it will prosper. If anything, its importance will grow as we continue to provide access to the brightest young men and women regardless of their social and economic backgrounds.
However, the residential university also will be enhanced by wise use of the new technologies. But every institution-new and old-must make some choices about the tactical and strategic role it will play in the digital age. There is not one grand solution. Indeed, I believe that it is too early to declare comprehensive positions and strategies. Rather, it is a time for substantial experimentation and calculated risks that will help us sort out opportunities and find effective paths.
I ask only two things as universities find their way in the digital age. First, our emphasis should be on one thing-the enhancement of learning. Second, from Day One we must build serious evaluation of educational effectiveness into our experiments.
As we undertake our experiments and developments, we must have some guiding visions. At MIT we have decided that one of our dominant visions is that of openness.
The Principle of Openness
Consider the direct question How is the Internet going to be used in education, and what is your university going to do about it?
An answer from the MIT Faculty is this: Use it to provide free access to the primary materials for virtually all our courses. We are going to make our educational material available to students, faculty, and other learners, anywhere in the world, at any time, for free.
Why are we doing this?
The glory of American higher education is its democratizing reach. Its great landmarks-the establishment of land grant universities in the mid 19th century and the GI Bill at the close of World War II-spread knowledge and opportunity across our landscape on an unprecedented scale. As we have progressed from World War II to the age of the World Wide Web, we have built a system of higher education that is the envy of the world, and we have developed the Internet as a universal medium for rapidly distributing and accessing information. These forces must now combine to raise educational opportunity throughout the world.
The Internet will revolutionize all kinds of teaching and learning, and some of that will necessarily and appropriately be done in the for-profit world. But inherent to the Internet and the Web is a force for openness and opportunity that should be the bedrock of its use by universities.
Think about what a professor at a research university does. She works with her students and colleagues to discover new knowledge, shares those discoveries with the professional community through papers, seminars, and conferences, and brings it to the students in her classes. She is not only discovering the future through her research, she is bringing it right into the classroom, and using these new findings and insights to develop and refine the courses she teaches. The resulting course notes and outlines, reading lists, demonstrations, and assignments become the educational content that undergirds the actual pathways to learning-the discussions, debates, and discoveries that faculty and students engage in together.
We now have a powerful opportunity to use the Internet to enhance this process of conceiving, shaping, and organizing knowledge for use in teaching. In so doing, we can raise the quality of education everywhere.
The quality of education in universities and colleges across America has grown dramatically over the past 50 years, aided by outstanding textbooks and other formal educational materials produced by the faculty. In this century, a similar role will be played by sophisticated educational materials that will be commercially available in electronic form.
But the positive transformation of our universities came about even more through the young men and women who studied at our most cutting-edge institutions and went on to become faculty members at other schools across the land. They took with them the class notes, syllabi, and other materials they used as students and based their teaching on these materials-sampling, shaping, expanding, and improving them to fit their new contexts and students.
At MIT, we plan to speed this process to Internet time, by making the primary materials for nearly all of our 2,000 courses available on the World Wide Web, for use by anyone anywhere in the world. A new engineering university in Ghana, a precocious high school biology student in New Mexico, an architect in Madrid, a history professor in Chicago, or an executive in a management seminar down the hall at MIT will all find these materials freely and instantly available. Together they will build a web of knowledge that will enhance human learning worldwide.
The computer industry learned the hard way that closed software systems-based on a framework of proprietary knowledge-did not fit the world they themselves had created. The organic world of open software and open systems was the true wave of the future. Higher education must learn from this. We must create open knowledge systems as the new framework for teaching and learning.
In this spirit, MIT has asked itself, in the words of T. S. Eliot, Do I dare...Disturb the universe?
Our answer is yes. We call this project MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW). We see it as opening a new door to the powerful, democratizing, and transforming power of education.
We are pleased to have been joined by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation in a partnership to launch MIT OCW.
Even as we gird our institutional loins to undertake this great adventure, the reaction to its announcement has been astounding. Some have likened it to the Gutenberg printing press and to the Great Library at Alexandria. This is a bit hyperbolic for my taste, but even as clear-eyed an observer as IBM's CEO, Lou Gerstner, recently stated to Wall Street analysts:
What do you think happened when MIT put its entire course catalog on the Net, for free? If that didn't send a shiver through the higher education system in the world, I don't know what will.
We have received messages and letters from all over the world. One writer, a faculty member at another U.S. university, said
As a boy, I used to get up early in the morning to watch "Mr. Wizard" on television, and I dreamed of a day when all university courses would be available on television for interested students. That day never came, but today I am delighted to learn that my vision was too limited and that MIT is at the vanguard of a new era in education.
Another message sums the dominant international reaction well:
What I saw from your initiative is the possibility of a major global upgrade of education-professors in the U.S. and around the whole world, including those in little Uganda where I am from, will be inspired and motivated to be on par with MIT standards. The students will demand it because they will have access to high-end quality education, giving them opportunities for a better life and better access to other opportunities.... This is global, and I would like to thank you for your generosity, for your commitment to education and not just to quality content but to designing an environment that fosters curiosity and joy in learning.
MIT's opportunity to serve society in this new way is immense and we are organizing the systems and the services to the faculty that will be required to meet these high expectations.
It is very important to note that the radical concept of MIT OCW evolved through the deliberations of a faculty-led study of MIT's role in Internet-based education. As we rolled out the idea and discussed it with the faculty, we encountered some unexpected reactions and learned some important lessons.
There had been some apprehension that many would argue that we would be giving away too much potential intellectual property revenue. In fact, this argument was voiced by only a few. Almost all of our faculty saw it as a way to enhance our service to society and to improve education world wide, goals they considered to be more important than revenue possibilities.
In those discussions, however, there were other strong concerns that any university undertaking such a project must recognize. First, the undertaking should not detract from resources and innovation in our on-campus education. (Indeed, I believe that MIT OCW will lead to enhancement of on-campus education.) Second, we must generate sufficient funding to provide a high level of service, making it as easy as possible for faculty members to convert their materials to a high-quality Web format. Together with our foundation partners, we are committed to meeting these important criteria, and also to developing concepts and systems that will aid other universities who may join in the open courseware movement.
Much of the discussion and prognostication about the future of education has been based on distance education, thought of as a form or analog of business-to-consumer electronic commerce. In such a model, lectures would be delivered to large numbers of students over the Internet, or through some variant of videoconferencing. The idea of MIT OCW is different. It is more related to business-to-business commerce. It is a form of sharing among institutions. It is a form of academic publishing more than of teaching. It puts materials in the hands of others to use as they see fit.
If sharing and pedagogical openness are to become major forces, there must be systems and platforms to support it. Here too, I believe that the spirit of open systems and of LINUX should prevail.
MIT and Stanford, together with partners that to date include the Mellon Foundation, Dartmouth College, North Carolina State University, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of Wisconsin, are undertaking the Open Knowledge Initiative (OKI). This is a project to create an open-source system of web-based environments to support pedagogical sharing and the management of educational systems.
The project leader, Vijay Kumar of MIT, indicates that the primary goal of OKI is to design and develop an open and extensible architecture for learning management systems. OKI has other goals, but this is the foundation from which everything else springs. We intend OKI to become a community, a process, and an evolving open-source set of tools that will be of service to a very wide range of educational environments. If OKI is successful as an architecture, then it will inspire contributors to help us realize these other goals. It is ambitious and important.
Outward and Inward
The new media enable us to reach out to the world and extend our learning community by teaching at a distance. They also enable us to bring the world in to our students on campus. Often, we arrive at an amalgam of the two.
MIT has for some time been engaged in so-called distance education. For example, our Sloan School of Management conducts ongoing seminars with management faculty in leading Chinese universities, and our System Design and Management program uses advanced videoconferencing and the Web to teach masters-level students in their work places around the country.
Last year, Andrew Lo of the Sloan School taught his popular course on investments to twenty eight Merrill Lynch directors, vice presidents, analysts, and associates in offices in Japan, Hong Kong, and Australia. With students with very busy professional schedules located in several countries, it would have been nearly impossible to conduct the classes and discussions simultaneously. Instead, Lo's formal lectures were made available on CD-ROM, which the students could use anywhere-on commutes, at home, or during non-trading hours at work. Faculty provoked discussions and answered questions, and students met with each other and the teaching staff at all hours-by e-mail, on the Web, and through a more primitive technology: the telephone. Despite their demanding schedules, the students committed themselves to 14 weeks of very hard work; what they got in return was an immersion course in global business as well as financial engineering.
The largest MIT experiment in distance education is the Singapore-MIT Alliance (SMA). MIT has worked since 1998 in partnership with the National University of Singapore (NUS) and the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) to develop world-class, research-based, highly interactive graduate engineering education across national and institutional boundaries. Students earn SMA-based graduate degrees from NUS or NTU through access to exceptional faculty and superior research facilities in all three institutions.
Walk into one of MIT's state-of-the art classrooms at 8:00 a.m., or at 8:00 p.m. this fall, and you will find students engaged in classes together with their counterparts in Singapore. Indeed, we are planning to beam 540 hours of instruction in 12 subjects to a total of 155 students. SMA subject areas range from advanced materials for micro- and nano-systems to manufacturing systems and technology to molecular engineering of biological and chemical systems. We believe that SMA, which is supported by a 155-megabytes-per-second Internet-2 line, is the world's most technologically advanced point-to-point synchronous educational program. It uses a dual-screen delivery technology that enables students to view simultaneously camera images from the classrooms and a computer screen for displaying PowerPoint presentations. This technology also makes it possible for MIT faculty to hold help sessions for the students and conduct oral examinations of doctoral students in Singapore.
Learning-not technology-is the goal of SMA. How is it going? Singapore and MIT students enrolled in the same classes are performing at comparable levels, but professors do report that there is a very steep learning curve for preparing and presenting lectures across these boundaries. Fortunately, however, they also report that in a modest amount of time they reach a point at which the technology ceases to dominate their planning and they are able to concentrate on educational quality.
Through these and many other experiments, we are extending our learning community by teaching outward from our campus in both synchronous and asynchronous modes-carrying MIT to the world.
But what about bringing the world inward to our primary students-those in residence on our own campus? Interesting examples have been developed in our School of Architecture and Planning, where our students use technology to interact with people and projects around the world. For example, student design projects are routinely evaluated by juries of distinguished architects on several continents, whose schedules would not allow them to convene here in Cambridge. They have monitored the progress of large international construction projects such as the new Hong Kong Airport. One term, a class was team-taught by Professor Bill Mitchell at MIT and architect Frank Gehry in Santa Monica, with Mayor Jerry Brown of Oakland, California, serving as the client for a project to design a reuse of an abandoned naval base.
Many other examples could be found throughout the Institute and across academia.
Sharing Laboratories, Libraries, and Lectures
Scientists and engineers learn in laboratories as well as in classrooms. MIT professor Jesús del Alamo has developed WebLab, a novel on-line laboratory for conducting experiments to test microelectronic devices-a lab that is available to students 24 hours per day from their dorm rooms or elsewhere. Last fall, 120 students at MIT enrolled in three different courses and 20 students in Singapore performed remote measurements in real time on state-of the art devices located at MIT and at Compaq's development laboratories. At its busiest hour, WebLab handled 13 users running 99 different experiments.
WebLab has nucleated the development of a broader tool, I-Lab, which will ultimately be used for experiments in many different fields of study. Bringing the lab to the student has proved to be a great way for students to explore theory versus experiment as they study.
In the same spirit, the World Wide Web increasingly brings library resources to users wherever and whenever they need them. Some of this has become simply routine, but other aspects are in a fascinating stage of development.
Welcome to DSpace: an effort to capture, archive and distribute much of the intellectual output of MIT in the form of durable digital documents. It sounds simple. It is not, because while libraries know well how to manage books and papers, they are just starting to learn how to create and maintain digital libraries. Some of the challenges are technological, but the most difficult challenges derive from the profoundly different copyright environment that is emerging in the digital world. More about that later.
A more common vision is that of bringing a high-quality learning experience to students wherever and whenever they need it. There are many activities of this kind around the country, but a major effort at MIT has been directed to the development of PIVoT, the Physics Interactive Video Tutor. PIVoT enables students to adapt the use of course materials to their own learning styles. It includes the video segments that comprise the entire lecture set of our introductory physics course, a complete textbook, and a set of linked demonstrations and practice problems.
Students can readily navigate through the material by selecting topics or key words. A personal tutor monitors the student's path through the material and his or her performance on problems in order to make suggestions about areas to investigate or reinforce. Early indications are that the use of PIVoT does not lead to higher scores on basic tests, but appreciably improves conceptual understanding.
The level of expense and effort to develop such a tool, however, reminds us that in the long run we will need to find ways to share resources among institutions and rely on appropriate commercial development as well.
So much for laboratories and libraries. What about lectures? University campuses are replete with stunning lectures, performances, and events that should be shared beyond our boundaries. In our case, the demand for such access is especially strong among our alumni/ae and among engineers and managers in industry. To begin to bring such events to these and other constituencies, our Center for Advanced Educational Services (CAES) has joined forces with our Alumni Association and our Industrial Liaison Program to establish MIT World.
MIT World is a web site (http://web.mit.edu/mitworld) that makes available on-demand videos of events on our campus. Indeed, our intent is for it to evolve into a 24-hour-a-day TV station on the World Wide Web. Currently it contains such events as lectures by linguist Noam Chomsky; economists Paul Samuelson, Bob Solow, and Franco Modigliani; physicist Frank Wilczek; biologist Eric Lander; planetary scientist Maria Zuber; space scientist Claude Canizares; and many others. Like MIT OCW, this is a means of sharing our intellectual largess with a broader community, and is an example of what we believe many universities will develop as well.
Improving Education on Our Campus—Fueling Innovation
Despite our status as a research university with global reach, our first duty is to the education of the students on our campus, and it is to this that the vast majority of our energy, resources, time, and innovation are directed. Technology has an increasingly important role in this core endeavor. In addition to bringing the world and its information resources to the desktop of each student, it makes possible new methods of teaching and learning.
Does the shibboleth that we should replace the sage on the stage with the guide on the side point to the future of university education? The jury is still out, but I believe that, by and large, that is the case. Prudent use of technology enables faculty to concentrate more on the learning process and less on the direct transmission of information. We are proud of the many exceptional lecturers on our campus. They inspire students and organize knowledge wonderfully. But there is increasing evidence that other, more flexible modes of teaching can better stimulate discovery and improve understanding of conceptual material.
A major endeavor in the use of studio learning at MIT is spearheaded by TEAL/Physics, led by Professor John Belcher. TEAL stands for Technology Enabled Active Learning, and it will be used this fall to teach our electricity and magnetism course. Taught in newly designed facilities, its first goal is to reintroduce hands-on experiments into the large freshman introductory subjects; its second goal is to more fully and actively engage students in the introductory courses than is possible with a strict lecture format. This concept was pioneered at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and at North Carolina State University.
In studio teaching, lectures, recitations, and hands-on laboratories are merged into a single experience. Students work together in groups of nine per table in a specially equipped classroom. They make heavy use of computer simulations and visualizations. White boards are always available for impromptu discussions or explanations. Video projection screens make it possible to present and share materials in both impromptu and formal ways.
We will carefully evaluate performance in these classrooms and compare it with how students do in traditional lecture courses.
How does an institution foster and support major innovations like this? The answer is simple: Make funds available to those faculty members who want to reform or improve education and who have good ideas they want to try out. Our experience is that such funding will catalyze rapid progress, even in an institution with a long-standing commitment to teaching and learning.
We are fortunate to have established two such funds in addition to the resources that individual schools and departments provide. The first is a generous endowment established by Alex and Brit d'Arbeloff to promote excellence in MIT education. The second is a major program called I-Campus established by MIT in partnership with Microsoft. Both programs enable faculty, students, and staff to submit proposals that are judged by a committee of educators. Ten percent of the budget for each d'Arbeloff-funded project must be set aside to support careful evaluation of its effectiveness, and all I-Campus projects must have an assessment component in order to receive funding.
Currently the d'Arbeloff Fund supports fifteen projects, most associated with improvements of the freshman-year experience. They range from TEAL/Physics to a freshman project in solving complex problems. Last year, the freshman project-Mars 2000-explored the design of a mission to Mars to determine whether life exists there, drawing on many experts from outside MIT who acted as mentors and resources to the student teams. The results-in terms of intensity, engagement, and learning-appear to have been spectacular. Other funded projects ranged from pedagogical initiatives in basic mathematics to innovative advising and tutoring systems. Note that not all of these initiatives involve new uses of technology. The emphasis is on learning and on improving the student experience.
Similarly, the Microsoft I-Campus program currently funds thirteen projects that utilize computer technology to enhance learning or to effectively manage educational systems. These projects run the gamut from on-line teaching modules in electrical engineering, computer science, and fluid mechanics to collaboration at a distance in aerospace design courses. It funds work on cross-media archives to be used in teaching Shakespeare studies, and has enabled students to develop a wireless system for instantaneous interaction and feedback in the classroom, including real-time assessment of understanding.
Legal Environment and Intellectual Property Issues
As higher education-and the world at large-begins to develop new tools for the digital age, it encounters many unanticipated obstacles, mostly stemming from our litigious society and regulators straining to regulate something quite new and different.
For example, one large corporation recognized that the tools embodied in PIVoT could be used to help pass along hard-earned know how to new generations of engineers and managers. The idea was simple: to establish a tutorial web site on which experienced masters would record their experiences, approaches, and life lessons regarding engineering and managerial problems. Newer staff could then gain an in-depth understanding of the craft through this professional oral history.
This concept is excellent, and the goal is important in an age when fewer people devote long careers to a specific company or industry. In the end, however, it didn't fly very well. Why? The senior people were afraid that they would be the subjects of lawsuits if they recounted honestly mistakes of the past.
Or consider the issues associated with a library archive project like DSpace. If a traditional library owns a book, it can make that book available to anyone it chooses-library subscribers, students of the university, or anyone it lets enter its building. A library can do this because, as owner of that book, it has first copy rights: i.e., it can not only read the ideas contained in the book, it can offer them to anyone else.
However, today's digital materials do not generally afford such first copy rights. Instead of subscribing to an electronic database, we license access to it. The original owner thus has far more control than with the traditional printed book. For example, a publisher can tell the library to whom it must restrict access. This flies in the face of the traditional openness of academic libraries.
How did this state arise? It is simple-the entertainment industry and its interests have guided the development of legislation that governs electronic media. A meaningful set of changes and exemptions must be worked out in Washington if digital libraries are to realize their promise for research, scholarship, and education.
Of course, one of the hottest questions in academia is who owns the intellectual property when a faculty member produces electronic teaching materials. We are all struggling with this, and certainly no uniform approach has evolved across U.S. colleges and universities. The question is complex because the potential forms of electronic teaching materials are complex. At MIT our policies are evolving, but are becoming more concrete.
Normally when a faculty member writes a book, he or she simply owns the copyright and can independently assign it to a publisher. The institution plays no role in this. But electronic educational materials may well not simply be a book in digital form. They may capture the essence of our classroom or laboratory experience. They may be highly interactive. It may be unclear whether they comprise teaching or publishing. They may be very time consuming and expensive to produce. How do we resolve this?
Insofar as possible, we are building our policies on the foundation of the basic mission of the institution, and what we expect of a faculty member in pursuit of that mission. We exist to discover and teach and to enable our faculty to achieve full, unfettered dissemination of their intellectual property. But we also expect their appropriate commitment of time and effort to this mission. We have long-standing processes for avoiding conflicts of commitment. Faculty should not enter into contracts with outside parties that would constrain their teaching or scholarly responsibilities at MIT. They also cannot disseminate intellectual property that impairs the rights of others associated with it.
The Policies and Procedures of MIT basically indicate that MIT owns intellectual property if "substantial" MIT resources were used to generate it. This will frequently be the case when sophisticated digital teaching materials are developed. But by no means is the matter cut and dried. Time and experience will be required to establish sound understanding and application of these policies.
The Spectrum of Educational Technology: What's Next?
In this essay I have tried to portray some of my views on the nature of research universities in the digital age. I find it to be a time in which educational experiments large and small must progress, and sense that it is a time in which a deep recommitment to effective teaching and learning is evolving. I have illustrated some of the phenomena by citing a few of the activities underway at MIT.
It seems to me that the vector of these activities points to what we should expect during the next decade or so: increasing collaborative activities and electronic learning communities, on both national and international scales; the development of tutorial and studio teaching, enhanced by digital tools; production of advanced simulations and visualizations; the development of sophisticated platforms for sharing web-based materials and for managing the educational enterprise; a myriad of devices and programs for interaction; and, I very much hope, the establishment of an OpenCourseWare movement to enhance education around the world. It must be a time of experimentation and risk taking. We must conceive and implement some very large-scale projects, and also make modest modification to existing ways of teaching.
This is a picture of somewhat chaotic, intellectually entrepreneurial evolution, as opposed to overwhelming revolution. That is in the spirit of the Internet and the World Wide Web that are the bases of much of the opportunity before us. But it is important to note that the technology must serve us as educators and learners, not the other way around. The concept of appropriate technology holds. It runs from a simple wireless Personal Response System (PRS) that allows students in a lecture hall to respond to a faculty member's query about their understanding of a concept to the Internet-2 connection that makes it possible for students in MIT and Singapore to have a shared, simultaneous learning experience.
Indeed, our rather revolutionary MIT OpenCourseWare initiative is based on relatively straightforward technology. The users of MIT OCW, for the foreseeable future, will mostly reduce its content to paper form, or use it as the foundation of lectures and seminars.
Looking beyond the relatively near horizon, however, is difficult. Why? Largely because the technological platforms will continue to evolve at blinding speed, and there will inevitably be discontinuous changes and surprises.
I would particularly look to the use of new interfaces and means of human-computer interaction, which can take simulation and interactive learning to the next level. This is part of the goal of Professor Hiroshi Ishii's "Tangible Bits" group in the MIT Media Lab. Their goal is to communicate digitally mediated senses of activity and presence at the periphery of human awareness. For example, they are developing workbenches, walls, and rooms in which ambient light, sound, airflow, and water movement can display information.
Through these and other advances, the learner's interactions with his or her surroundings will soon involve all five senses, as the environment itself displays, receives, and conveys information in a myriad of forms. As they strive to understand basic concepts and learn to design or synthesize information in new ways, students will navigate virtual space and time.
Dinosaurs or Prometheans?
Now I return to the central question.
I believe that universities like MIT are making steady progress in using emerging electronic technologies to enhance and extend learning. But we must separate the wheat from the chaff, and we can only do this by keeping focused on the real objective-learning. We should not use these technologies just because they are there, or only because we see some potential revenues associated with them.
Above all, we must evaluate our educational experiments and new approaches in order to understand whether they improve learning. Evaluation is key. Understanding what doesn't work is as important as recognizing success.
Some of our experiences with long-distance collaborative design and mentoring were not successful. This was because we had not invested sufficiently in the use of expert technical operators of the videoconferencing systems. On the other hand, the simple Personal Response System has been used very effectively.
Two years ago, when Alex and Brit d'Arbeloff established their extraordinary fund to support improvements in the excellence of education at MIT, we held a daylong program of talks, proposals and brainstorming about teaching, expecting that people would focus on advances that could come from the use of digital media. Interestingly, digital media received almost no attention that day. The faculty and students were concerned about more fundamental goals and concepts. Nonetheless, in due course, many good proposals were made to this fund, and also to the Microsoft I-Campus initiative, that use electronic media and devices to improve pedagogy.
The real lesson of the MIT experience with educational technology, in my mind, is that it has forced us to rethink the educational process. Faculty engaged in these new approaches do believe that they have become better teachers-but not so much because of the technological extensions of their capability but because the process of designing the programs forces them to think in fresh ways about ancient techniques.
Thus we come full circle to the essential human quality of teaching and learning. It is our minds, our sharing spirits, our insights into our students, our quest to improve what we do, and our passion to explore new horizons that drive the quality of teaching and learning in a research university.
But we can do better in the future than in the past. That is the simple definition of progress, and this progress will be driven in part by new technological possibilities.
We are not dinosaurs. We are Prometheans.
Our progress will be driven by competition as well. Others, driven by emerging technological and market forces, will increasingly challenge our leadership in education. I welcome this, because a healthy mix of competition and cooperation fuels excellence.
We have new opportunities to form educational alliances across distance, time, institutions, and nations-alliances that will expand opportunity, learning, and understanding. This, too, I celebrate, because we and our students must be citizens of the world as well as of our own countries.
However, the energy, passion, and inventiveness of our residential students, together with an environment that combines research, scholarship, and teaching, is our greatest source of renewal and our greatest strength.
The academic year 2000–2001 brought several significant changes to MIT's senior academic and administrative leadership.
Chancellor Lawrence S. Bacow left the Institute at the end of the academic year to become the twelfth President of Tufts University. A member of the MIT Class of 1972, Professor Bacow served the Institute for over 20 years as a professor of environmental policy and as an academic leader. As Chancellor, he led efforts to implement the recommendations of the Task Force on Student Life and Learning, and played a major role in establishing MIT's alliance with Cambridge University.
Professor of City Planning Phillip L. Clay, Associate Provost since 1994, was appointed Chancellor effective July 1, 2001. In this role, Professor Clay is responsible for continuing the enhancement and integration of education, student life, and campus community. His responsibilities include oversight of major educational and international institutional partnerships; he chairs the Council on International Relationships and co-chairs the Council on the Environment.
In December 2000, Robert J. Silbey was appointed Dean of the School of Science, after service as Interim Dean. The Class of 1942 Professor of Chemistry and a Margaret MacVicar Faculty Fellow, Professor Silbey was co-chair of the Task Force on Student Life and Learning and served previously as head of the Department of Chemistry and Director of the Center for Materials Science and Engineering.
Larry G. Benedict, formerly Dean for Student Affairs at The Johns Hopkins University, joined the Institute as Dean for Student Life. Dr. Benedict's appointment completed implementation of a new organizational structure. The Dean for Undergraduate Education now oversees areas including Academic Services, Admissions, Career Services and Preprofessional Advising, Minority Education, ROTC, Student Financial Services and the Student Services Center, and Student Services Information Technology. Major areas reporting to the Dean for Student Life include Athletics, Physical Education and Recreation; the Campus Activities Complex and Office of Campus Dining; Counseling and Support Services; the MIT Card Office; and Residential Life and Student Life Programs.
Professor Steven R. Lerman, Class of 1922 Distinguished Professor and Director of the Center for Educational Computing Initiatives, completed his term as Chair of the Faculty, which was marked by thoughtful attention to questions of educational innovation. Professor Stephen C. Graves, Abraham J. Siegel Professor of Management and Engineering Systems and Co-Director, Leaders for Manufacturing Program and System Design and Management Program, succeeds Professor Lerman as Chair of the Faculty.
At the beginning of the year, the Provost announced the appointment of an Institute-wide Council on Faculty Diversity, charged with formulating plans for the recruitment and advancement of women and minority faculty throughout the Institute. Appointed Co-Chair of the Council was Nancy H. Hopkins, the Amgen Professor of Biology, who gained national recognition for her leadership in the Study of the Status of Women Faculty in the School of Science, published in 1999. The Provost and Chancellor are the other co-chairs of the new Council.
New academic department or program leaders whose service began during the year were Ellen T. Harris, Head, Music and Theater Arts Section; Professor Anthony T. Patera of the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Co-Director, Singapore-MIT Alliance; Candace L. Royer, Head, Department of Athletics, Physical Education, and Recreation; and Susan Slyomovics, Head, Anthropology Program.
Changes in the leadership of research activities included the appointments of Steven D. Eppinger, Director, Center for Innovation in Product Development; June L. Matthews, Director, Laboratory for Nuclear Science; Michael F. Rubner, Director, Center for Materials Science and Engineering; Richard J. Samuels, Director, and Stephen Van Evera, Associate Director, Center for International Studies; and Jeffrey H. Shapiro, Director, Research Laboratory of Electronics. David H. Marks was named Director of the new Laboratory for Energy and the Environment, formed through the merger of the former Energy Laboratory and Center for Environmental Initiatives.
Among notable changes in the administration during the past year were the appointments of Walter R. Bender, Executive Director, Media Laboratory; Anne P. Glavin, Director of Public Safety; Ronald E. Hasseltine, Assistant Dean for Finance, School of Science; Barbara Jablon, Director of Compensation and Human Resources Information Services, Human Resources; Nathaniel J. Johnson, Director of the Information Technology Support Process, Information Systems; William M. Kettyle, Medical Director, MIT Medical; Monica Lee, Director, Publishing Services Bureau; Laure Morris, Director, Office of Communications and Donor Relations, Resource Development; Patti Richards, Senior Communications Officer, Public Relations Services; Judith V. Sager, Director of Gift Planning, Resource Development; and Frank D. Schimmoller, Chief Financial Officer, Lincoln Laboratory.
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The honors bestowed on MIT's faculty and staff each year are a striking reminder of the outstanding quality of the Institute's education and research. The following summary touches on only a few examples of the awards and recognition earned by members of the MIT community during 2000–2001.
Two MIT professors were elected to membership in the National Academy of Sciences, one of the highest distinctions accorded within the scientific community. This year's new members from MIT were Provost Robert A. Brown, the Warren K. Lewis Professor of Chemical Engineering, and Dietmar Seyferth, the Robert T. Haslam and Bradley Dewey Professor of Chemistry Emeritus.
The National Academy of Engineering elected five new members from the MIT faculty: Professors Dimitri P. Bertsekas of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS); Rafael L. Bras of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering; James G. Fujimoto of EECS; Douglas A. Lauffenburger of the Department of Chemical Engineering, Co-Director of the Division of Bioengineering and Environmental Health; and Nancy A. Lynch of EECS.
Elected Fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences were Alexander V. d'Arbeloff, Chairman of the MIT Corporation; Shafrira Goldwasser, the RSA Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science; John Benjamin Heywood, the Sun Jae Professor of Mechanical Engineering; Barbara Imperiali, the Ellen Swallow Richards Professor of Chemistry; and Douglas A. Lauffenburger, Professor of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering.
The Institute of Medicine elected to membership Peter S. Kim of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, Professor in the Department of Biology, and Robert A. Weinberg, member of the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research and Professor of Biology.
Vahid Tarokh, Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, was awarded the Alan T. Waterman Prize, the highest honor bestowed on young researchers by the National Science Foundation, in recognition of his work on space-time codes, which have significantly improved the performance and data rates of wireless communications.
Professor of Mechanical Engineering Alexander H. Slocum, a Margaret MacVicar Faculty Fellow, was named the 2000 State of Massachusetts Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.
Continuing the tradition of service to the government by the MIT community, Institute Professor Mildred S. Dresselhaus was named Director of the Office of Science in the Department of Energy.
Charles M. Vest, President of the Institute, received the Arthur M. Bueche Award of the National Academy of Engineering, which recognizes statesmanship in science and technology, including engagement with public policy issues and contributions to industry-government-university relationships.
Appointment as MacVicar Faculty Fellows recognized outstanding commitment to excellence in teaching on the part of six members of the faculty: Professors Mary C. Boyce of the Department of Mechanical Engineering; Anne M. Mayes of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering; David A. Mindell of the Program in Science, Technology, and Society; Heidi M. Nepf of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering; Janet Sonenberg of the Music and Theater Arts Section; and J. Kim Vandiver of the Department of Ocean Engineering.
Erich P. Ippen, the Elihu Thompson Professor of Electrical Engineering, was the recipient of the twenty-eighth annual James R. Killian, Jr., Faculty Achievement Award. The selection committee cited Professor Ippen for his establishment, with Charles Shank, of the field of femtosecond optics while both were working at Bell Laboratories.
Associate Professors Justine Cassell of the Program in Media Arts and Sciences and Seth Lloyd of the Department of Mechanical Engineering received the Harold E. Edgerton Faculty Achievement Award, which recognizes junior faculty for achievements in teaching, research, and service to the MIT community.
The Gordon Y Billard Award, recognizing individuals who have performed special services of outstanding merit to MIT, was given this year to Roberta Brooks and Carmen Lazo of the Building 4 Coffee Shop, operated by Aramark, and O. Robert Simha of the Office of the Executive Vice President.
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While we celebrate the accomplishments of the MIT community, we also salute the distinguished service and outstanding achievements of current and former colleagues who have passed away. They contributed greatly to the Institute, to the nation, and to the world of knowledge, and their careers are inspirations to us.
Professor Emeritus of Meteorology James M. Austin, noted for his pioneering modeling of the meteorology of air pollution, died on November 26, 2000, at the age of 85. After receiving two degrees from universities in his native New Zealand, Professor Austin completed an Sc.D. in meteorology at MIT in 1941, when he began teaching at the Institute. During World War II, Professor Austin served as a civilian consultant to the U.S. Air Force weather service in Europe, where his forecasting was a factor in the decisions on the final bombardment of Cherbourg, France, and the D-Day landing of airborne troops, as well as the movement of advance mobile weather stations across northern France. In recognition of his wartime service, he received the Medal of Freedom from President Truman in 1946. On June 9, 1948, he launched a nightly weather forecast on WBZ-TV — the first television program broadcast live from Boston. He was a professor of meteorology until 1983 and the first director of the Institute's Summer Session.
John M. Biggs, Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering, died September 3, 2000, at the age of 80. Professor Biggs received an S.B. and an S.M. from MIT, joining the faculty in 1947 as an instructor. He was an expert in structural dynamics, earthquake engineering, wind forces in structures, the induction of bridge vibrations by traffic, and protective construction for nuclear sites. Professor Biggs helped design Boston's Central Artery, the John Hancock Towers in Boston and Chicago, and many nuclear power plants in the U.S. and abroad; he was named Construction Man of the Year by the Engineering News-Record in 1965. After his retirement from the faculty in 1982, he was active in civic and church activities in Sandwich, New Hampshire.
Marine geochemist and paleoceanographer John M. Edmond died on April 10, 2000, at the age of 57. Professor Edmond received the B.Sc. degree from the University of Glasgow (1965) and a Ph.D. from the University of California at San Diego (1970), where he studied at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. He participated in the discovery and geochemical exploration of hydrothermal systems at the mid-ocean ridges, and led research that illuminated the chemical composition of remote rivers and lakes of South America, Siberia, and Tibet. Collaborating with colleagues around the world, Professor Edmond and his research group conducted groundbreaking work on oceanic particulate matter, trace elements, and radioisotopes. He is remembered as a kind and thoughtful teacher, attentive to the needs of students and engagingly enthusiastic about his own work.
One of the world's great theoretical nuclear physicists, Institute Professor Emeritus Herman Feshbach died December 22, 2000, at the age of 83. Professor Feshbach received a B.S. from the City College of New York in 1937, and a Ph.D. from MIT in 1942; he was on the Institute faculty for more than 50 years, ten of them as Head of the Department of Physics, before his retirement in 1987. He was a revered colleague and mentor - an advocate for women and minority faculty members and a spokesman for scientific freedom and opportunity. He helped found the Union of Concerned Scientists and is remembered for his activism in the antinuclear movement and his work in opening communications between western and Soviet scientists during the Cold War. Awarded the National Medal of Science in 1986, Professor Feshbach led the development of nuclear reaction theory, co-authored major textbooks, and was the long-time editor of the Annals of Physics.
Professor Emeritus Allen F. Henry of the Department of Nuclear Engineering, who came to MIT as a visiting professor and stayed for 32 years, died on January 28, 2001, at the age of 76. An accomplished classical pianist as a child, he went on to receive three degrees, one in chemistry and two in physics, from Yale University. Prevented by a knee injury from serving in the U.S. Army, he volunteered to drive an ambulance with British troops in India. Professor Henry, who developed mathematical models to describe neutron behavior in reactors, joined MIT in 1969 after 15 years as the manager of reactor theory and methods at the Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory in West Mifflin, Pennsylvania. He went on to serve on the advisory boards of several national laboratories. A dedicated and effective teacher, he was active in graduate education at both the departmental and Institute level.
Patrick M. Hurley, Professor Emeritus of Geology and Geochemistry, died on October 21, 2000, aged 88. A native of Hong Kong with degrees in mining engineering from Victoria College and the University of British Columbia, Professor Hurley received a Ph.D. from the Institute in 1940 and joined the faculty following World War II, when he worked on antisubmarine warfare and underwater ballistics. He was known for his work on the determination of geological age and the application of nuclear physics to geology. He worked on the growth of the continental masses, continental drift, and early studies in plate tectonics; his book How Old is the Earth? was translated into 11 languages. Active in Institute governance, he served as Chair of the Faculty and chaired the search committee that led to the appointment of Jerome B. Wiesner as President and Paul E. Gray as Chancellor.
Stanley M. Jacks, retired Professor of Management, died on August 2, 2000, at the age of 83. After receiving a B.A. from Harvard in 1943, he served in the War Labor Board while attending Northeastern University Law School, where he graduated in 1946. He also earned an M.A. in Economics from Harvard in 1950. After teaching economics at MIT and labor-management relations and labor law at Simmons College, he joined the Sloan School faculty in 1959. An active arbitrator and mediator, at the Institute he pioneered the introduction of law-related courses to undergraduates and was involved in early efforts to promote the use of alternative dispute resolution techniques. After retiring in 1980, Professor Jacks devoted himself to the founding of the YMCA of Casco Bay, Maine. His son Tyler E. Jacks is Associate Professor of Biology.
Professor Emeritus Thomas H. Lee, a pioneer in developing modern management techniques, died on February 4, 2001, at the age of 77. Born in Shanghai, he earned a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Chiao Tung University in 1946 and was the Pan-Asia doubles champion in table tennis while in college. Following service in the army of the Republic of China, he worked in Shanghai for General Electric, which sent him to the United States for further training. He remained with G.E. in the U.S. for 30 years, also earning degrees from Union College and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Professor Lee joined the MIT electrical engineering faculty in 1980 and served as Director of the Laboratory for Electromagnetic and Electronic Systems. He profoundly influenced the reinvigoration of American product design and manufacturing processes, and in 1988, a year after his retirement from the Institute, he founded the Center for Quality Management. In recent years, he had been active in the study of tactics to fight corruption in business and government worldwide.
Professor of Mathematics Franklin P. Peterson died suddenly of a stroke on September 1, 2000, at the age of 70. Professor Peterson, who joined MIT in 1958 after receiving a B.S. from Northwestern University and a Ph.D. from Princeton University, was an algebraic topologist, specializing in the study of cohomology rings, which bridge the boundary between abstract topology and other disciplines of geometry. His influence is felt today in the fundamental structures of and the interplay between geometric and algebraic topology. He was a dedicated and beloved teacher and collaborator who co-authored papers with 23 mathematicians, two of whom were his students. He served for a quarter-century as treasurer of the American Mathematical Society and is remembered as a bon vivant who played bridge, tennis, and table tennis with a rare combination of competitiveness and good humor.
Clifford G. Shull, Professor Emeritus of Physics, died on March 31, 2001, at the age of 85. Professor Shull shared the Nobel Prize in 1994 for his pioneering work in neutron scattering, a technique that reveals where atoms are within a material, just as richocheting bullets reveal where obstacles are in the dark. This has proven to be the most important single technique for elucidating the structure and dynamics of solids and fluids. A native of Pittsburgh, Professor Shull received a B.S. from the Carnegie Institute of Technology in 1937. After receiving a Ph.D. from New York University in 1941, he became a research physicist at Texaco. He joined the Oak Ridge National Laboratory following the end of World War II-one of many scientists eager to build on the information and technology developed in connection with the Manhattan Project-and began his pioneering work on neutron scattering. He joined the Institute faculty in 1955 and retired in 1986. Professor Shull's students and colleagues will remember his optimism, modesty, and contagious excitement for science.
Professor Emeritus Claude E. Shannon, a pioneer in modern digital communications and information theory, died on February 24, 2001, at the age of 84. He came to MIT as a graduate student, after having received B.S. degrees in mathematics and electrical engineering from the University of Michigan in 1936; he received an S.M. in electrical engineering and a Ph.D. in mathematics in 1940. A cryptographer, Professor Shannon joined Bell Labs in 1941. During World War II, his team's work on anti-aircraft detectors was crucial when German rockets were used in the blitz of England. In A Mathematical Theory of Communication, written in 1948, he theorized that the information content of a message consists of the number of 1s and 0s it takes to transmit it-an idea at the heart of today's information age. Holder of the Institute's Donner Professorship of Science from 1958 to 1978, Professor Shannon received the National Medal of Science in 1966. He will be remembered for a love of chess, his whimsical inventions, and for juggling while riding a unicycle in the hallways at Bell.
Irwin W. Sizer, Professor Emeritus of Biology and former dean of the Graduate School, known for his work in molecular biology and as a champion of women and minority students at MIT, died on September 11, 2000, at the age of 90. During a decade as Head of the Department of Biology, Professor Sizer oversaw the transition from a classical curriculum to a modern molecular biology program; his own work focused on the use of enzyme inhibitors as antibiotics and in chemotherapy. He was instrumental in the development of Whitaker College and graduate programs including the joint program in oceanography with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute. Professor Sizer received his undergraduate degree from Brown University in 1931 and a Ph.D. from Rutgers-The State University of New Jersey in 1935; he spent the remainder of his career at the Institute. He and his wife, Helen, established the Irwin and Helen Sizer Department of Biology Career Development Professorship at the time of his retirement in 1996.
Professor Emeritus Dirk Struik, a specialist in differential geometry who gained international recognition as an historian of mathematics, died on October 22, 2000. A native of Rotterdam, Professor Struik was invited to MIT in 1926 by Professor Norbert Weiner after studying in Leiden, Rome, and Göttingen. He remained at the Institute, becoming an American citizen in 1934, but his political views led to his indictment in 1951 by a Middlesex County Grand Jury on charges that he had advocated the overthrow of the federal and state governments. MIT placed him on leave with pay pending a judicial decision. After the charges were dropped five years later, he was reinstated, although the Executive Committee of the MIT Corporation censured him for conduct unbecoming a member of the faculty, citing his use of the Fifth Amendment before the House Un-American Activities Committee and his comparative lack of candor with members of the administration. Professor Struik continued to research and teach after his formal retirement in 1960; still intellectually active, he had celebrated his 106th birthday a few weeks before his death.
Richard Terrell, a Life Member Emeritus of the MIT Corporation, died on December 4, 2000, at the age of 81. Mr. Terrell spent his career at General Motors-he joined the photographic staff as a messenger at the age of 17 and retired 42 years later as Vice Chairman of the Board, with breaks for service in the Army Air Corps in Panama and in the Navy during World War II. He served on the boards of several leading industrial firms in addition to G.M. and also gave generously of his time to civic causes, playing a key role in the revitalization of the neighborhoods around G.M.'s headquarters in the late 1970s. He joined the MIT Corporation in 1974, and although his only college degree was the S.E., a three-month degree for senior executives from the Sloan School, he served on the boards of four other colleges or universities as well.
In academic year 2000–2001, student enrollment was 10,090, compared with 9,972 in 1999–2000. There were 4,258 undergraduates (4,300 the previous year) and 5,832 graduate students (5,672 the previous year). The international student population was 2,489, representing 8 percent of the undergraduate and 36 percent of the graduate populations. These students were citizens of 109 countries. (Students with permanent residence status are included with U.S. citizens.)
In 2000–2001, there were 3,335 women students (1,755 undergraduate and 1,580 graduate) at the Institute, compared with 3,287 (1,768 undergraduate and 1,519 graduate) in 1999–2000. In September 2000, 429 first-year women entered MIT, representing 42 percent of the class of 1,017 students.
In 2000–2001, there were, as self-reported by students, 2,780 minority students (1,984 undergraduate and 796 graduate) at the Institute, compared with 2,669 (1,996 undergraduate and 673 graduate) in 1999–2000. Minority students included 402 African Americans (non-Hispanic), 89 Native Americans, 594 Hispanic Americans, and 1,695 Asian Americans. The first-year class entering in September 2000 included 495 minority students, representing 49 percent of the class.
Degrees awarded by the Institute in 2000–2001 included 1,183 bachelor's degrees, 1,553 master's degrees, 10 engineer's degrees, and 492 doctoral degrees-a total of 3,238, compared with 3,199 in 1999–2000.
Student Financial Aid
During the 2000–2001 academic year, 2,304 undergraduates received a total of $54,077,871 in student financial aid, exclusive of student employment. While the number of needy students remained approximately the same, the total aid increased by 7.5 percent, reflecting a downturn in the economy in the United States and abroad.
Total grant assistance to undergraduates was $42,515,352, an increase of 12.4 percent. Of this grant assistance, $34,416,071, or 81 percent, came from MIT; $4,053,013, or 9.5 percent, from federal sources; and $4,046,268, or 9.5 percent, from outside sources. Endowed scholarships and current gifts funded 83 percent of the MIT grants; the remaining 17 percent came from unrestricted funds. The most significant change in undergraduate scholarship funding sources from the previous year was an increase in endowed scholarships and current gifts, as a result of the strong growth in the endowment, and a corresponding decrease in unrestricted funds. Unrestricted funds decreased from $11,331,998 in FY2000 to $5,782,633 in FY2001, a decrease of 49 percent.
Undergraduate students borrowing declined 7.2 percent, to $11,562,519. Of the total loans made to undergraduates, 80 percent ($9,286,708) came from federal sources and the remaining 20 percent from institutional sources.
Graduate and professional students borrowed $15,033,908, an increase of 5.2 percent from the previous year. Of the total loans made to graduate and professional students, $9,431,905, or 63 percent, came from federal sources and the remaining 37 percent from institutional sources.
Career Services and Preprofessional Advising
MIT experienced a successful recruiting season in 2000–2001 despite the slowing economy, and the outlook for the coming year was similarly positive. The most sought-after students were those with skills, knowledge, and experience in information technology, particularly multimedia and Internet technologies. Starting salaries for those students also increased this year because of increased demand. The telecommunications, pharmaceutical, finance, and semiconductor industries have contributed noticeably to this demand. Electrical Engineering and Computer Science was the number-one department from which employers sought candidates, but employers have learned that students from a wide variety of MIT courses have substantial experience with information technology, and are willing to interview students in all majors and at all degree levels. Students were increasingly interested in entrepreneurship, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, and the business side of technical industries; interest in working for national defense laboratories has decreased. Salaries for doctoral graduates in engineering ranged on the average from $70,000 to $90,000, offers to master's candidates range from $55,000 to $70,000, and to bachelor's candidates from $45,000 to $54,000.
Over 650 employers participated in InterviewTrak, the on-line, web-based employment recruiting program of the Office of Career Services and Preprofessional Advising. Through this system, students, alumni/ae, and employers were able to communicate with each other throughout the job search process twenty-four hours a day and seven days a week. Currently, 10,716 students and alumni/ae are registered with the program.
In 2000, there were a total of 174 MIT applicants to medical school, 168 of them degree-holders. MIT students continued to do well despite higher criteria for acceptance. Of the seniors, 81 percent were accepted; of the graduate students, 57 percent; and of the alumni/ae, 59 percent. Applicants benefited from the counsel of 50 pre-medical advisors, including 21 faculty members from MIT and the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology as well as 29 physicians and senior staff.
Private support for FY2001 totaled $200.8 million and included $192.7 million in gifts, grants, and bequests and $8.1 million in support through membership in the Industrial Liaison Program. The total compares with $233.6 million in 2000, $209 million in 1999, $143.9 million in 1998, and $133.6 million in 1997. Gifts-in-kind for the past year (principally gifts of equipment) were valued at $6.2 million.
By source, gifts from alumni totaled $62.7 million; non-alumni friends: $15.9 million; corporations, corporate foundations, and trade associations: $53.1 million; foundations, charitable trusts, and other charitable organizations: $47.3 million; and others: $13.7 million.
Unrestricted revenues available for operations for FY2001 totaled $1.43 billion, and total operating expenses were $1.38 billion. Net assets decreased $0.3 million, reaching $7.9 billion at year-end. The market value of the MIT endowment at year-end was $6.3 billion, $0.3 million lower than the prior year.
The research revenues of departmental and interdepartmental laboratories, primarily on campus, totaled $410.1 million in FY2001, an increase of 8 percent from the prior year. Industrial sponsors as a group remained the largest source of sponsored funds at MIT, followed by the Department of Defense and the National Institutes of Health. Lincoln Laboratory reported revenues of $349.1 million, approximately equal to the $348.3 million in the previous year.
Facilities and Campus Environment
The academic year 2000–2001 saw a dramatic increase in the number and scale of construction activities on campus. The architectural metamorphosis now under way will add nearly one million square feet of state-of-the-art space to the Institute's 154-acre campus and will rejuvenate many existing facilities.
This was the first full year of operation for the Capital Projects Group in the Department of Facilities, which has built a strong and effective construction management operation geared to the scale of the Institute's current construction program, assembling a team of experienced, capable professionals in many fields. The Capital Projects Group has established a formal decision-making structure for project approval, reporting procedures to maintain strong oversight and accountability, and effective budgeting and projection capability. Throughout the building program, significant attention is being paid to issues of sustainability.
Such an extensive construction program has an inevitable impact on the daily operations of the Institute. In order to minimize disruption, the Department of Facilities has launched both a construction impact mitigation program and a comprehensive communications effort. Facilities is also working to preserve and enhance campus green space so that members of the community have outdoor places that provide a refuge from the noise and dirt of widespread construction sites.
During the year, work continued on many major projects:
- Design development for the Ray and Maria Stata Center for Computer, Information, and Intelligence Sciences continued even as construction proceeded on the underground garage. The slurry wall was completed in October 2000. Construction of the building is scheduled to begin in September of 2001, when the reinforced concrete structure for the below-grade facilities is complete.
- Excavation for Simmons Hall, the undergraduate residence on Vassar Street, started in mid-October. The 10-story dormitory is designed to include substantial space for activities that will support and enhance student life. The project is scheduled for occupancy at the beginning of the 2002-2003 academic year.
- Construction of the Albert and Barrie Zesiger Sports and Fitness Center began in September of 2000. The first phase includes a 50-meter Olympic pool and instructional pools with seating for 500 spectators, a health and fitness area, six squash courts, a multi-activity court, offices, and renovated locker rooms. The schematic design is complete for Phase II of the project, which will provide additional facilities on the site of the present Rockwell Cage.
- The conversion of 224 Albany Street (Building NW30) from an early 20th-century mill building to apartment-style housing for 120 graduate students began in July of 2000 and was on track for completion in August of 2001.
- The construction of graduate student housing at Sidney and Pacific Street proceeded at a brisk pace. This fast-track project was permitted in the fall, and construction began in January. The building, which will house approximately 700 students, will be occupied in the summer of 2002.
- Work continued along Vassar Street on the installation of underground utilities-including water mains, chilled water, fire protection water, telephone and electric duct banks, and steam piping-to support the Stata Center, Building NW30, the Zesiger Sports and Fitness Center, and Simmons Hall.
- The renovation of the Dreyfus Building for the Department of Chemistry continued. This comprehensive, phased renovation will provide a more efficient, safe, and code-compliant layout, address energy conservation issues, and complete repairs and upgrades to the exposed concrete skin.
Design development continued for the extension of the Media Laboratory and for a new streetscape along Vassar Street. Master planning began for expansion to the Sloan School and the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences in the East Campus, and an architect was selected for the project. Architects were also chosen for the Brain and Cognitive Science center; site selection entered its final phase and schematic design began.
The Design and Construction group within the Department of Facilities undertook a wide range of projects during the year, retrofitting the Bechtel Lecture Hall (Room 1-390) with state-of-the-art distance learning capabilities, completing phase II of renovations in Building 45 for the Capital Projects and Design and Construction groups, and completing work to accommodate the Center for Learning and Memory in Buildings E17 and E18. Two classrooms on the first and second floors of Building 1 were completed to the high standards established in recent years. Renovations to the Information Center in Building 7, completed in the spring, have greatly enhanced and improved MIT's "front door," and work is underway to clean and restore the masonry and lighting in Lobby 7.