MIT Reports to the President 1995-96



In 1995-96 student enrollment was 9,960, compared with 9,774 in 1994-95. There were 4,495 undergraduates (4,472 the previous year) and 5,465 graduate students (5,302 the previous year). The international student population was 2,138, representing 8 percent of the undergraduate and 33 percent of the graduate populations. These students were citizens of 104 countries. (Students with permanent residence status are included with US citizens.)

In 1995-96, there were 3,013 women students (1,705 undergraduate and 1,308 graduate) at the Institute, compared with 2,813 (1,604 undergraduate and 1,209 graduate) in 1994-95. In September 1995, 471 first-year women entered MIT, representing 42 percent of the freshman class of 1,122 students.

In 1995-96, there were, as self-reported by students, 2,630 minority students (1,980 undergraduate and 650 graduate) at the Institute, compared with 2,496 (1,944 undergraduate and 552 graduate) in 1994-95. Minority students included 363 African Americans (non-Hispanic), 37 Native Americans, 505 Hispanic Americans, and 1,725 Asian Americans. The first-year class entering in September 1995 included 493 minority students, representing 44 percent of the class.


Degrees awarded by the Institute in 1995-96 included 1,223 bachelor's degrees, 1,350 master's degrees, 28 engineer's degrees, and 554 doctoral degrees - a total of 3,155 (compared with 2,839 in 1994-95).


During the academic year 1995-96 the continuing healthy economy and a reduction in the number of needy students reduced the need for grant funds. At the same time, endowment income for scholarships increased by 10 percent. A total of 2,638 students who demonstrated need for assistance (59 percent of enrollment) received $34,548,000 in grant aid and $15,611,000 in student loans from all sources. The total, $50,159,000, represents a 2-percent increase in aid compared to last year.

Grant assistance to undergraduates was provided by $12,022,000 in income from the scholarship endowment, $773,000 in current gifts, $3,754,000 in federal grants (including ROTC scholarships), and $3,315,000 in direct grants from non-federal outside sources to needy students. In addition, $14,684,000 in scholarships from MIT's unrestricted funds was provided to undergraduates, inclusive of the special program of scholarship aid to needy minority group students that represented $86,000 and the MIT Opportunity Awards that accounted for $648,000. An additional 519 students received grants irrespective of need from outside agencies, totaling $3,156,000. The undergraduate scholarship endowment was increased by the addition of $23,867,234 in new funds. These new contributions increased the endowment for scholarships to $128,000,126.

Loans totaling $15,611,000 were made to undergraduates, a 9-percent increase from last year. Of the total loans made, $1,911,000 came from the Technology Loan Fund, $4,406,000 from the Federal Perkins Loan Program, and $9,294,000 from the federal Direct Loan Program and other outside sources.

Graduate students obtained $4,471,000 from the Technology Loan Fund, a 63-percent increase from last year's level. Most of this increase was a result of the increased enrollment in the master's program in the Sloan School of Management. Graduate students obtained $9,204,000 from outside sources under the Federal Stafford Program, 19 percent more than last year. Graduate students also received $172,000 in Perkins Loan funds and $51,000 from other outside sources. The total, $13,898,000, is an increase of 32 percent over last year.

The total of loans made to undergraduate and graduate students was $29,509,000, a 12-percent increase over the last year.

The number of needy undergraduate students decreased by 2 percent to 2,639. The average need for this population increased by 2 percent to $20,085. In the aggregate, the financial aid program required $25,110,000 from needy students' family resources and provided $53,004,000 in aid dollars including work programs. As in past years, the aid program provided more than two-thirds of needy students' total costs.


The year saw a bull market for MIT talent. Unlike the bull market on Wall Street, which showed signs of faltering in the spring, employers were eagerly soliciting resumes up to graduation. Over 600 employers (including individual divisions of companies making their own recruiting arrangements) used the facilities of the office to interview candidates. This compares with 442 in 1994-95 and 393 in 1993-94. It is doubtful that the office has ever seen more traffic in its 70-year history.

Buoying the market was a voracious demand from employers for graduates with software skills. It came from every corner of the economy - from the computer industry, from software firms and firms engaged in information systems consulting, and from firms of all sorts in manufacturing and the service sector using computers in their business. Approximately 5 out of 6 employers interviewing on campus listed "computer science" as a desired discipline. Many were also looking for students with other skills, but a large number wanted only students with a computer science background. Over a quarter of all the firms recruiting were either software developers or information systems consultants.

While the market was strongest for students with software skills, it was also strong for students with other interests. There was a welcome jump in recruiting, for example, by firms building mechanical and electro-mechanical equipment. The electronics industry was well represented, as were manufacturers of biomedical devices. In spite of continuing downsizing in the defense industry, firms engaged in work for the Department of Defense were active recruiters. Recruiting by firms in the oil, chemicals, materials, and food industries lagged only by comparison with the active recruiting by other companies. Salary offers to technical students were up 7 to 8 percent at the bachelor's level, about 4 percent at the master's level. Salary offers at the doctoral level ranged widely, but $70,000 was roughly the median for Ph.D.'s in engineering.

MIT continued to participate in the nationwide surge in the number of applicants to medical school. A total of 254 candidates used the services of the office, up from 201 in 1995 and 187 in 1994. They included 153 undergraduates, 29 graduate students, and 72 alumni. It is not known at this writing how many were accepted. Last year the MIT acceptance rate was 59 percent, compared with 35 percent in the nation at large.


Gifts, grants, and bequests to MIT from private donors in 1995-96 total $130.9 million. This amount includes cash, securities, and real estate gifts totaling $123.6 million, and $7.3 million in support through the Industrial Liaison Program. In addition, gifts in kind, mostly of equipment, totaled $8.8 million. The gifts reported by the Alumni Fund were $24.8 million, a new record.

The pace of new gifts and new pledge commitments increased substantially over the past year. New commitments totaled $137.1 million for the year, representing an increase of 37 percent over the previous year and a combined increase of 76 percent in the last two years. Major efforts are continuing to increase endowment for student financial aid, faculty support, academic initiatives, new and renovated space, and unrestricted funds.


As reported by the Vice President for Finance and Treasurer, the total financial operations of the Institute, including sponsored research, amounted to $1.3 billion, an increase of 6.3 percent from 1994-95. Education and general expenses, excluding the direct expenses of departmental and interdepartmental research and the Lincoln Laboratory, amounted to $669.3 million during 1995-96 compared with $598.8 million during 1994-95. The direct expenses of departmental and interdepartmental sponsored research on campus increased from $271.2 million to $275.7 million, while direct expenses of the Lincoln Laboratory sponsored research increased slightly from $318.2 million to $318.4 million. Current revenues used to meet the Institute's operating expenses totaled $1,247.5 million, augmented by $7.3 million in current gifts, $1.6 million of other fund balances, and $6.9 million of funds functioning as endowment.

At the end of the 1996 fiscal year, the Institute's investments, excluding retirement funds, student notes receivable, and amounts due from educational plant, had a book value of $2.18 billion, and a market value of $2.92 billion compared to last year's book value of $1.94 billion and market value of $2.50 billion.


Change once again seemed to dominate the campus this year - both physical change and change in the way we do business. As the reengineering effort continued, many processes were reviewed and redesigned. Some of these changes involved custodial services, repair and maintenance procedures, and mail services in Physical Plant; copy and printing services in Graphic Arts; and the Office of Laboratory Supplies, which closed its operations entirely.

Physical improvements to the campus took place as well. After several years of design and construction, the Cogeneration Plant commenced operation. This project included the reconfiguration of the electrical distribution system, which has allowed us to phase out three old incoming substations and consolidate our service entrance requirements at the Central Utility Plant. However, within weeks of the start of operation, the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities ordered the Institute to pay the local utility company a customer transition charge of $1.3 million per year for leaving their system. The Institute has appealed this order as contrary to federal energy policy and continues legal action in what is being considered a landmark case.

Many new construction and renovation projects were undertaken this year, including the final phase of work on Senior House. With an aggressive schedule, this work should be completed in time for students to occupy the building for the fall term. The Tang Center, a 32,000-square-foot classroom building, was completed this year, and renovation work on the Whitaker Building (56) commenced with an expected completion date next winter. Other miscellaneous projects included major security upgrades in two parking garages, a continuation of the high-rise sprinkler program, and several landscape projects.

Work in conjunction with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) also progressed. Campus elevator upgrades continued throughout the year in order to ensure compliance with current elevator and ADA regulations. Many projects upgrading the path of travel to and within our buildings were completed, and a study was begun of possible ways to improve access to the Kresge Auditorium, Kresge Little Theater, and the surrounding plaza.

The Institute purchased 480 Commonwealth Avenue in Boston for the purpose of housing a sorority.

The safety of students, faculty, and staff members remains an important issue. Additional lighting and improved walks in Killian Court were completed and a new Campus Police Motorcycle Unit was implemented this year, lending higher visibility to patrols. In addition, motor vehicle thefts decreased dramatically as the result of improved parking access control and security systems.

MIT Reports to the President 1995-96