DUE News - 2015

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  • MIT team will race 3,000 km across the Australian Outback in October.

    An MIT team that boasts some notable alumni — including U.S. Chief Technology Officer Megan Smith ’86, SM ’88 and D-Lab founder and lecturer in mechanical engineering Amy Smith ’84, SM ’85 — has its eyes fixed on the 2015 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge, a 3,000-km race across the Australian Outback that will take place in October.  

  • A recent op-ed piece in the New York Times on how to attract female engineers noted that D-Lab has had remarkable success drawing women into the program; this past year, 74 percent of D-Lab students were women.

  • To help alleviate poverty, representatives from MIT D-Lab and Tufts Fletcher School focus on respectful, human-centered research practices in global development.

    When a student now at the Tufts University Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy traveled a few years ago to rural India on a research trip to interview farmers, she brought some serious baggage with her: a nearly 200-question survey that took up to five hours to conduct and complete.

  • MISTI Global Teaching Labs has reached over 10,000 foreign high-school students with summer internships and research opportunities.

    The MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives program (MISTI) places over 500 MIT undergraduate and graduate students with international internship and research opportunities each summer. Through MISTI Global Teaching Labs (GTL), an experimental teaching program, nearly another 150 MIT students now travel abroad during MIT’s January Independent Activities Period (IAP) to teach science and engineering in foreign high schools.

  • The MIT Edgerton Center’s K-12 electronics curriculum was the basis for a creative technology-education workshop in rural Maine this winter.

    When a middle-school girl from rural Maine updated her Facebook page with a photo of herself soldering on a circuit board, the creators of Gizmo Garden knew the project was working — participating students were developing new images of themselves.

  • On Friday, March 13, Student Financial Services released the new SFS website. The old website has been retired and all links to the former URL will now redirect users to the new homepage.Student Financial Services new website

    To create the new site, the SFS web team worked with DCAD and Moth Design to develop an extensive project plan with several key components: researching the needs of our students through a discovery phase, building the information architecture (the “bones” of the site) using our research, and finally designing and developing a site that met all of our stated goals.

    To understand our current audience and to improve upon the quality of our content structure, we surveyed our users via focus groups and one-on-one interviews with undergraduate and graduate students, alumni, parents, and staff. In our research we discovered that students and our users wanted:

    • More clarity and transparency in understanding how financial aid works
    • Easy-to-find dates and deadlines
    • Resources dedicated to parents
    • Automated forms and processes

    Next, we created our information architecture and sitemap to address the issues users identified, along with others we found through our daily interactions with students...

  • As part of the MIT D-Lab: Development class, six students traveled to Peru in January to collaborate with peers from Universidad de Ingeniería y Tecnología (UTEC) on sustainable housing and energy projects for the village Rayampampa. Teams of students worked remotely throughout the semester running lab experiments and building prototypes in preparation for field work.

  • A number of staff members from DUE received awards at this year's MIT Excellence Awards ceremony held on March 11.

    Serving the Client Award

    Forms and petitions team

    The Forms and Petitions team, a collaboration between staff from DUE and IS&T, won the Serving the Client Award. After soliciting input from students and faculty, the team developed digitized forms for several core student functions: Add/Drop, HASS Concentration, Late Add/Drop, and Graduate Student Petition. In the past, students had to print copies of each form and have advisors and/or instructors sign the forms before turning them in--a time-consuming and cumbersome process for all. "These thoughtful innovations boost the quality of the campus experience for many students and faculty," President Reif said before presenting the award. DUE members of the Forms and Petitions Team include...

  • Several new staff joined DUE between January 20 and April 14, 2015.


    Mohammad Obaidee, Financial and Program Administrator

    Student Financial Services
    Paula Bernal, Counselor, Financial Aid
    Eric Sacca, Assistant Director of Operations

    Aerospace Studies
    Camille Woods, Administrative Assistant II

  • Every March, GECD sponsors the Career Exploration Series (CES), a sequence of industry-specific panels and guest speakers that introduce students to the many nuances, thrills, challenges, and expectations of various career paths and opportunities. Barclays, Teach For America, Global Health Corps, and Novartis were among the 23 organizations that participated this year (a full list is included below). The series consisted of eight events focusing on the fields of academia, consulting, finance, big data, public service, product design, the federal government, and patent law. GECD Career Exploration SeriesEach event was also an opportunity for  MIT students to connect to alumni, recruiters, and experts with varied educational and professional backgrounds, and valuable insights into the different stages of career exploration and decision-making.

    This year also marked the introduction of a CES student satisfaction and needs assessment, to help GECD understand the expectations and interests of participating students. The survey revealed that 95% of students were satisfied with the series, and 74% of students said the program met their expectations—encouraging numbers that can guide GECD efforts for subsequent CES programs. The assessment also provided useful information about other areas of interest; fields cited the most were consulting, academia, biotech, aerospace, IT, and healthcare...