Praise for Susan Silbey
To The Faculty Newsletter:
Bravo to Susan Silbey for her profound and provocative (dare I write "awesome"?) welcome message from the Faculty Chair [“The Fundamental Challenge Facing Higher Education Today,” MIT Faculty Newsletter, September/October, 2017]. With MIT and Kendall Square becoming more and more the "epicenter of innovation" (to quote our campaign Web page at <betterworld.mit.edu/epicenter-innovation-mit-kendall-square/>, it seems appropriate to consider in our educational practice the relation between innovation and improvement, and to remember (as in Jill Lepore's article to which Susan refers) that "disruptive" has not been generally considered a positive attribute.
Susan refers to the work of Ben Snyder on the hidden curriculum. She might also have mentioned Ben's oft-repeated comment that we focus on giving our students an outstanding education in problem solving, but the more important issue might be problem setting. Perhaps in today's alignment around MIT's campaign to "build a better world" we might also make room for building a more thoughtful world.
Professor of Computer Science and Engineering