Section III: Global Connections, the Long Term, and Strategic Planning
“The Institute is committed to generating, disseminating, and preserving knowledge, and to working with others to bring this knowledge to bear on the world's great challenges…We seek to develop in each member of the MIT community the ability and passion to work wisely, creatively, and effectively for the betterment of humankind."
— MIT's Mission Statement
Students care deeply about the Institute’s long term future, our sustained viability and the enduring pursuit of our founder’s inspirational MIT Mission. Specifically, we are concerned by and seek to address the following domains:
- Bold Institute Actions – At key junctures in our past, Institute faculty and leadership have pursued transformative grand pursuits, inventions and acts which improve the world and make us proud of our MIT connections. The grand aspirations of today and tomorrow are tremendously important in that they will inspire future generations of students. Too often, however, the Institute’s great story has remained practically hidden, as if we’re too busy creating the future to celebrate our past successes or strategize about emerging directions. We urge MIT faculty and administrators at all levels to be more visible leaders, that is, to rally us and the world at large, to voice our core values, and to craft unifying Institute goals and directions.
- Expansion and Growth – For most of our history, the Institute has been in growth mode, expanding to accommodate emerging disciplines and future frontiers. And yet we face severe physical space and financial limitations on similar policies into the future. To properly fuel the Innovation Pipeline, MIT needs ever more creative mechanisms and moneys for engaging faculty and students in the creation and re-invention of disciplines and novel research areas. By exploring novel institutional structures, international engagements, and new kinds of interdisciplinary programs, MIT can maximize the odds of staying vital.
- Connecting Strategy and Operations – When everyday administrator action is at odds with overarching Institute strategy, confusion reigns in the student ranks. Local optimization in Institute decision-making is a root cause of a great deal of student frustration. Students desire transparency, accountability, and competence. We ought to strive for a well-thought through and integrative total student experience, one that weaves together all the myriad elements of our time at MIT and beyond.
- Institute Economics – The Institute’s cost-structure, tuition duties, deployment of endowment income, and capacity to deal with sponsor volatility all directly affect student life. MIT students are especially sensitive to perceived misallocations of money and too often believe that some part of MIT is wasting it. Perhaps this is in ignorance of the “full picture”. Perhaps, however, it is a correct student perception. True transparency and accountability would allow us all to discern the difference.
- Positioning Locally and Globally – As global inter-connectedness becomes the new world order, the Institute must seize the opportunity, seek out tomorrow’s talent and moneys, embody viable economic practices, and position ourselves for enduring success.