Allan Goodman
President and CEO, Institute of International Education

SPURS 40th Anniversary and DUSP 75th Anniversary Celebrations

In celebration of SPURS’ 40th Anniversary, on April 3rd, Robert Buckley, Managing Director of the Rockefeller Foundation, met with students and faculty to discuss the Foundation’s new African initiatives. In the evening, SPURS/Humphrey alumni/ae, faculty, staff, former directors, and current Fellows were invited to a 40th Anniversary dinner celebration at Le Meridien Hotel. Bish Sanyal, SPURS/Humphrey Director and Chair of the MIT Faculty, discussed the history of SPURS. Larry Vale, Head of the Department of Urban Studies and Planning (DUSP), emphasized the important role that SPURS has played in DUSP. He also awarded Nimfa de Leon, SPURS Administrator, a certificate for her outstanding service to SPURS and the Department. Piotr Lorens, a SPURS alum (1996-1997) from Poland, spoke about the lessons he learned at SPURS. Finally, Bassim Halaby, the Co-founder and Chairman of Benchmark International and MCP 1988, gave a keynote talk titled, “Irrational Exuberance: A Global Trend?” Halaby, a former MCP and Sloan student, discussed the role that MIT played in his career and the challenge facing cities in the Middle East as they cope with rapid development.

On April 4, SPURS celebrated its 40th Anniversary in conjunction with the 75th Anniversary of the Department of Urban Studies and Planning in a day-long symposium: Changing Cities: Celebrating 75 Years of Planning Better Futures at MIT. Dr. Allan Goodman, CEO and President of the Institute of International Education gave the luncheon seminar titled, “If the World is Flat, What are We Still Doing in Cambridge?” Dr. Goodman praised SPURS for providing an opportunity for excellent SPURS and Humphrey Fellows to come to MIT from around the world. He challenged MIT to promote more international experiences for its own students and to continue to strengthen universities across the globe.

“Spurs furthered my transition to my dream career path. The opportunities offered by SPURS are infinite.”

Ernest O. Ansah
Ghana 2006-2007
Water and Sanitation Specialist