MIT Reports to the President 1994-95

Counseling and Support Services (CSS)

This has been a successful, but arduous year for CSS. The counseling staff has been short one counseling dean and was taxed heavily with demands for individual counseling, crisis management, and emergency consultation and referrals. Student programs, support to special student groups, and work with the Committee on Academic Performance (CAP) and other constituencies around the Institute added to the demands for service. Hiring a fourth counseling dean at the conclusion of a search currently underway will improve the ability of CSS to serve the Institute.

Rich Goldhammer was hired as a learning disabilities consultant and he has already proven to be an important resource for students, staff and faculty. Learning disabilities and attention deficit disorders are crucial areas for CSS staff, since they intersect frequently and obviously with students' academic and personal experiences at MIT.


An increase in the demands for counseling on college campuses has been reported nationally and MIT has not been an exception. This year, the death of a former student who was well-known in the MIT community, and several complex student psychiatric situations requiring hospitalizations and extensive follow-up inside and outside MIT, added to an already heavy counseling load in CSS.


Readmission, withdrawals, leaves of absence, and excused absences from finals were managed by the CSS staff, with increased emphasis on collective decision-making by the deans, uniform guidelines and input from academic departments.


Students of Color (Arnold Henderson and Ayida Mthembu)

Committee on Race Relations; Martin Luther King, Jr. Committee; Minority Administrators Group; Albert Hill Award Committee; Presentations to the Black Student Union, the National Society of Black Engineers and Hispanic Professional Engineers; assistance with Kwanzaa, Black History Month and Hispanic Month; support for Minority Awards Banquet and Commencement's Minority Student's Luncheon.

Women Students (Ayida Mthembu, Lynn Roberson, and Jackie Simonis)

Coordination of 1995 East Coast Latina Conference; Sponsorship of Asian/Asian-American Women's Lunch series; presentations/trainings on rape, harassment and violence; "success and strategy" workshops for graduate women featuring women faculty speakers; personal development workshops for undergraduate women; advising of special women's groups, including women's committee of GAMIT, women of African descent, Mujeres Latinas; Cheney Room renovations and maintenance.

Students with Disabilities (Arnold Henderson and Jackie Simonis)

Hiring and supervision of learning disabilities consultant; Americans With Disabilities Act Advisory Committee; management of accommodations (readers, notetakers, etc.) for students with physical disabilities; coordination of Commencement disabilities support.

Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Students (Arnold Henderson, Lynn Roberson)

Sponsorship/participation in gay/lesbian/bisexual R/O reception; Contact Line peer helpline supervision

Jacqueline R. Simonis


The Council on Primary and Secondary Education (CPSE) includes representatives from all of MIT's schools. CPSE is developing and overseeing programs which bring the strengths of MIT to the American K-12 educational system.


Professional Growth Of Educators
The Institute for Learning and Teaching (TILT) is a year-long professional development program for educators that begins with a three-week, residential workshop on MIT's campus in July. Community-based teams of teachers, school administrators, and interested volunteers (parents, school board members, university representatives, or industrialists) experience activities that promote personal growth, integrate disciplines within a research/technical project, and develop their skills at working in groups and partnerships. Throughout the three weeks, teachers develop skills in team building, group dynamics, effective communication, negotiation, grant writing, brainstorming, mind mapping, working with different learning styles, group reflection and debriefing, and computer use.

Every year, TILT chooses two different technologies to investigate. Formerly called How a City Works, the program in past years focused on water treatment and delivery, construction, mass transportation, and telecommunications. In 1994, the workshop ran from July 11-29, and teams explored either power generation, and health care. Each team was linked to a site (a business or facility engaged in the technology) and explored in detail one technical aspect of the technology, determining who it serves and how it serves them. Teams examined how the sciences, mathematics, and the social sciences intertwine to produce the technology, how it might be changing, and how it compares with trends in education. In 1995, TILT will begin with its three-week workshop running July 10-28 and will focus on food processing and aviation technologies.

Attending TILT'94 were teams from Berkeley, CA; Attleboro, MA; Fall River, MA; Haverhill, MA; Salem, MA; Sutton, MA; and New York, NY. All teams returned to their communities in August with the charge to share their experiences with colleagues in their home community and to promote school improvement. To help them maintain communication with TILT, MIT, and other community groups, each team was given seed money and was loaned a laptop computer with a subscription to America Online for one year. TILT staff also continued to help them to think about the possibilities of the TILT a program based on the philosophy and techniques.

TILT'94 was funded by the Noyce Foundation, Pew Charitable Trusts, Citibank, ComEnergy, Polaroid, GTE Foundation, National Science Foundation's Engineering Coalition of Schools for Excellence in Education and Leadership, Sutton Public Schools, Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School, and Diman Regional Vocational Technical High School. Support for the UROP students was provided by the MIT Class of 1992.

Collaborative For Excellence In Teacher Preparation Program
MIT is part of a new collaborative including Harvard, UMASS Boston, Wheelock College, and the Boston and Cambridge school systems that seeks to improve teacher preparation courses for students who will teach mathematics and science at the K-12 levels. The project, which at MIT will reside in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning, has been funded by the National Science Foundation for $5,000,000 over five years. Monies from the grant at MIT will be used to further develop the Teacher Certification Program, which is supervised by Professor Jeanne Bamberger.

MIT/Wellesley Teacher Certification Program
To foster the continuing growth of a cadre of new teachers who meet MIT's standards of excellence in science, mathematics, and technology, MIT, through a joint program with Wellesley College, offers undergraduates preparation for Massachusetts State Certification in mathematics and science at the middle and high school levels. This program, started in the fall 1993, has now been integrated into MIT's Department of Urban Studies and Planning. Undergraduates in the program must complete a major in the subject area in which they wish to teach. In addition, they must complete three courses at MIT and two at Wellesley; one of the latter is a seminar taken in conjunction with the required 150 hours of supervised practice teaching. Students must also complete 75 hours of supervised classroom observations; these observations often take place in the classrooms of teachers participating in the MIT Teacher Fellows Program at Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School.

The Noyce Prize, a $10,000 prize provided by the Noyce Foundation, is awarded each year to an outstanding undergraduate student who completes a degree in science, mathematics, or engineering and who elects to teach in the public school system. This June, the award was given to Ricardo J. Campbell, a graduating senior in chemical engineering. The first recipient of the prize, Sally Buta, has just completed certification and will started teaching physics this fall.

Teacher Fellows
The Teacher Fellows Program in 1994 focused on four master mathematics teachers at Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School. With the enthusiastic support of their school administration, they were released from 20% of their teaching responsibilities; they continued to teach their regular classes in the remaining time. During their released time, they visited one another's classrooms, discussed, discovered, clarified, and documented as a group the practice and the strategies that they find are most effective in encouraging students to learn, understand, and practice mathematical reasoning. Periodically, the teachers led meetings of the school's mathematics staff and disseminated their insights to these teachers.

This program is supported with a two-year grant from the Department of Energy that began in the fall of 1994.

Joint Venture With Sciencemedia, Inc.
ScienceMedia, Inc., is a new toy company created by MIT alumna Joan Roth that promotes science literacy through toys and TV, the goal being to attract children usually turned off by science. The company will produce science kits that contain all necessary equipment for an experiment, full instructions, and science trading cards. The first product line will focus on Better Sports Through Science. MIT's name and logo will appear on the kit box. The Council will share in the royalties from the sales of the kits. The first products developed by ScienceMedia debuted at the Toy Manufacturers of America annual meeting in New York in February 1995.


Connecting To Statewide, Educational Reform
Professor Ron Latanision, Chairman of CPSE, is also a co-principal investigator for the NSF-supported statewide systemic initiative in Massachusetts, PALMS (Partnerships Advancing the Learning of Mathematics and Science). As such, his primary areas of responsibility are changing public attitudes and enhancing educational technology. An essential component of the American educational system is the public's attitude towards educational achievement. Professor Latanision has engaged the expertise of MM&L, a Boston public relations firm, to advise his efforts in assessing and raising public awareness levels about educational reform in the areas of mathematics and science. As a first step, Latanision and his public relations team will be conducting a telephone survey of Massachusetts parents to obtain baseline data. This will be followed by a media campaign, and attitudes will be reassessed to determine the efficacy of the campaign.

Professor Latanision and PALMS personnel have also established the Massachusetts Software Partnership Task Force as part of the statewide technology initiative Mass Ed Online. The task force will establish a partnership between school members and software developers that will enable them to work together to develop curriculum software to provide students with high quality, hands-on learning experiences. The task force will also set up criteria for software developers and school districts to participate in this partnership, and will evaluate its effectiveness.

Through the efforts of another PALMS co-principal investigator, Dr. Pendred Noyce, the Noyce Foundation has lent support to the Council's TILT program for the past two years. Dr. Noyce is the daughter of MIT alumnus Robert Noyce, founder of Intel.

Role Of Universities In K-12 Education
Professor Latanision, the National Academies of Sciences and Engineering, the Institute of Medicine, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences convened a group in Cambridge on June 5-6, 1995, to consider the potential roles of the academies and of research universities in confronting the national challenge posed by K-12 education. The new National Science Education Standards point out several areas that need to be addressed: to introduce effective science teaching in all grade levels, a large number of scientifically trained young people must enter the precollege teaching profession; those who teach the introductory mathematics and science courses in the university need to examine how the inquiry-based instruction that the nation is advocating for K-12 students in mathematics and science should affect their own approach to teaching; present university admission policies inhibit the kind of K-12 teaching called for in the standards.

The academies and the Institute of Medicine are planning a second meeting in Washington, D.C., this time of selected chairs of mathematics and science departments of AAU universities, to help them design ways of supporting reform efforts in American K-12 science and mathematics education.

New England Science Teachers
Professor Latanision directs the Science and Engineering Program for Middle and High School Teachers, which shares the Council's goal of technological literacy for all students. Key to a good education is an enthusiastic, knowledgeable teacher. Since 1989, this program has endeavored to give educators a unique perspective of how the basic sciences, mathematics, and engineering are integrated to meet the technological challenges and needs of commerce and society. In 1995, the program ran from June 26-30 and had about 70 participants from across the United States, two from Sweden, and one from Switzerland.

The alumni of this program, now totaling approximately 338, become members of the New England Science Teachers (NEST). This year, NEST members came to MIT's campus on June 30th for a two-day meeting to assess the program and determine future directions for the organization. NEST members also explored the potential of using the Internet and World Wide Web. These meetings are essential to maintain contact and to foster collegiality amongst the NEST membership. NEST will be supported by a grant from Raytheon through 1998.

R.M. Latanision
Lynn A. Roberson
Arnold R. Henderson, Jr.
Brima A. Wurie
Ayida Mthembu

MIT Reports to the President 1994-95