Photograph of MIT dome
HOME | Directory | Site Map | Search:

Testimonials

alumni.html Back to Alumni and Dissertations

Bruce Bimber ‘92
Professor, Departments of Political Science and Communication, University of California, Santa Barbara.

“I came to the STS program at MIT in the mid-1980s, as an electrical engineer who was passionately interested in the social and political dimensions of technology. In the half-dozen years before I arrived at MIT, Apple had gone public, IBM had introduced its first PC, and Time magazine had named the computer "Machine of the Year" in place of its traditional "Man of the Year." Big questions were everywhere, and the STS program re-launched me on a new career as a social scientist who studies technology.”

Gregory Clancey ‘99
Associate Professor, Department of History, National University of Singapore.

“Attending the STS Program at MIT was a life-changing experience for me.  I came in with narrow interests which the program greatly broadened.  I developed a better understanding of (and hence more respect for) a range of scholarly approaches and languages, a transition I would likely not have made in a traditional history department. …Interdisciplinarity is not an abstraction or a key-word for me, but the way I choose to live my academic life.”

Greg Galer ‘01
“My areas of interest were (and remain) American industrial history/history of technology, particularly 19th century ironworking. I am now Curator of the Stonehill Industrial History Center at Stonehill College. The program allowed me to explore a variety of disciplines and techniques and integrate what components of each I found useful for my interests and goals.  Interacting with other students and faculty in the program whose interests ran from close to quite different from mine was not only intellectually stimulating but led to some life-long friendships and colleagues.”

Shane Hamilton ‘05
Assistant Professor, History Department, University of Georgia

“I consider myself extremely fortunate to have been able to study with some of the world's preeminent scholars in history of technology and science, environmental and agricultural history, U.S. history, cultural studies, and anthropology — not only the faculty, but also my fellow students. The broad, interdisciplinary range of experiences I had at MIT allowed me to think about history and culture in ways that no other program could have.”

Kendall Hoyt ‘02
Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Dartmouth Medical School
Lecturer, Thayer School of Engineering

“My research interests include: History of vaccine innovation, science policy, and U.S. biodefense programs.  More specifically: U.S. biodefense policy and R&D strategy, the effect of biosecurity regulations on security and biomedical innovation, and strategic responses to market failures in vaccine development. I am currently teaching courses in Engineering on Technology and Biosecurity.”

Christopher Kelty ‘00
“Currently I teach in the Rice Anthropology Department. I had been looking for a place to study ‘literature and science’ but was seduced instead by anthropology and the history of science. The best part of the STS program when I was there ('94-'99) was the vibrancy and urgency of the critical debates about science and technology, both contemporary and historical.  I found the convergence of questions in anthropology, philosophy and history to and the density and diversity of scholars in, around and passing through MIT, to be extremely challenging and vital.” 

Wen-Hua Kuo ‘05
“I currently teach at National Yang-Ming University, Taiwan, where I hold a joint appointment at Center for General Education and Department of Social medicine. I want to thank the STS program, my intellectual home, which granted me the freedom to try something unconventional and interdisciplinary. Almost all of the issues and concepts discussed in my thesis were derived from either the fruitful discussion in classes or colloquia I attended.”

Hannah Landecker ‘99
“My areas of interest were (are) anthropology of cell biology, history of twentieth century biotechnology, and biological cinema. I found the program entirely by fortuitous accident: I was looking at programs in science journalism, and someone mentioned that I'd be more suited to science and technology studies. I had never heard of it before. I am now an assistant professor of anthropology at Rice University, and have just completed my first book, Culturing Life: How Cells Became Technologies, forthcoming from Harvard University Press. For me, the freedom to explore anthropological and literary modes of inquiry into life science all the while soaking in MIT's broader milieu of intense scientific and technical change was the highlight of the program.”  

David Lucsko ‘05
“I am currently Managing Editor, Technology and Culture, and Lecturer, University of Detroit Mercy. I'm an historian of technology interested in the history of manufacturing and transportation history. My dissertation is about hot rods and automotive enthusiasm in the United States. People love to talk about "interdisciplinarity" and "intellectual diversity" — and rightly so. But as a student here, what really struck me the most was (1) how supportive the faculty was, and (2) the fact that the graduate students all got along so well. As for the latter, we were all doing very different things — some of us were anthropologists-in-training, others historians, others somewhere in between. And our projects ran the gamut from hot rodding to Chinook jargon and from the human genome project to navy engineers. But we got along; more importantly, we were able to share our work and have meaningful conversations. As for the former, let me put it this way: never in a million years did I think anyone would sign off on the idea of a dissertation about hot rods. But they did, they were supportive, and they helped me see it through. What an excellent place to be a graduate student!”

Russell Olwell ‘97
“I teach history at Eastern Michigan University, where I teach classes on U.S. history and on Historical research and writing…. I was lucky to be in a program that exposed me to a number of disciplines, such as Anthropology, and that respected other disciplines within science and technology studies. The work I did in the program prepared me well for academic life and for much of the educational policy work I do now. It gave me strong analytical skills to understand when bad arguments are being made, and how to recognize when people are being far too sure of themselves and their ideas. The program faculty treat students like colleagues, and respect their input and ideas. The intellectual atmosphere at MIT is amazing, and a vital part of the STS experience. No one will forget being at the Institute, and to be around so many smart, capable people at once.”

William Turkel ‘04
“Before the HASTS program I was in Linguistics and Cognitive Science, and worked as a programmer. I'm now an assistant professor of History at the University of Western Ontario. I feel very fortunate to have been a part of the HASTS program (1999-2004). I couldn't have asked for better mentors than Harriet Ritvo and Deborah Fitzgerald; the other faculty, too, taught me a lot, about history, methodology, about finding my way in the academic world. Many of my fellow students became close friends, and they provided a collegial, interdisciplinary, and intellectually stimulating environment for the development of my own thinking. For me, MIT was an amplifier for curiosity, imagination, collaboration, and productive inquiry.”

Jessica Wang ‘95
“I am now Associate Professor and Canada Research Chair (Tier 2) in U.S. History at the Department of History of the University of British Columbia. At UBC, in addition to being a member of the history faculty, I am also affiliated with our fledgling programs in U.S. Studies (an interdisciplinary program primarily involving the departments of political science, economics, and history) and Science and Technology Studies. Thus, after more than a decade, I am returning to the kind of interdisciplinary environment that characterized my grad school years."