Update from March 2007 Staff Meeting

By Dan Hastings, Dean of Undergraduate Education

This month I thought I should reprise some of my remarks at the DUE all staff meeting at the end of March. Some DUE staff may not have heard the remarks. Since it was the first all staff meeting since last August, I felt it was important to summarize some of the events since then. In my remarks, I reviewed the changes in leadership and some of the progress on our Strategic Themes. These have been covered in other issues of this communication so I will focus on the Campaign for Students and the budget and space changes.

Capital Campaign

The President has announced a Campaign for students with the following goals. To raise $500M over the next 5 years for student-related activities, including financial aid ($200M), grad student fellowships ($100M), undergraduate commons ($100M) and student life programs ($100M). DUE will work seamlessly with DSL and GSO in this effort.
The Chancellor begins meeting with donor groups in late April; the general fundraiser goes fully public in Oct. '08. Between now and then is the beginning where they build a core group of donors.
A sub-set of dept. heads under the leadership of Betsy Hicks have met to identify the DUE theme "Learning to Solve Big Problems". The topics we are raising money for within DUE include:

  • International activities

  • Financial aid

  • Development of learning spaces

  • Educational innovation

  • Teaching and learning

  • Mens et manus

  • Integration of life and learning

  • Funds will support our 6 strategic themes

Budget

  • Our DUE-wide Strategic Plan, developed in Spring/Summer of 2006, helped position us   well for the FY08 budget cycle.

  • Our FY08 Budget combined requests for DUE Offices and our new Strategic Themes under the leadership of Jeanne Hillery and Elizabeth Reed.

  • Using a combination of new base dollars and Dean’s discretionary resources, we were able to fund many of the FY08 requests.

  • New funds totaling $1.5M will support:

    • Key student programming including F/ASIP, Project Interphase, UROP and Freshmen Orientation

    • Classroom technology equipment and maintenance

    • Diversity programming

    • Global opportunities for students

    • Shift from teaching to learning

    • Faculty participation in DUE

  • We received a major financial aid enhancements, including additional UROP funds to guarantee financially needy students one semester of research funding. We are also able to lower the self help somewhat.

Space

  • We will be given to an additional net 2,100 SF of space in Building 12. However we must vacate Building 26. This will allow us to move staff currently in temporary space to permanent locations.

  • The Office Heads developed a set of DUE Space Principles that helped guide us through a comprehensive review of all DUE space.

  • Jeanne Hillery considered many possible space models, but no one model solved all DUE space issues.

  • Final model selected includes the following moves:

    • Office of Faculty Support to Building 12

    • Office of Study Abroad to Building 12

    • Desktop Support relocates in Building 12 allowing MITCO expansion

    • New central Dean’s Office in 7-133

    • Office of Experiential Learning to 4-110

  • Renovations will begin May 2007 with moves scheduled for August through October.

Strategic Partnerships

We have a number of critical strategic partnerships with other organizations at MIT. In order to keep track of our relationships and make sure we have the right perspective, I have decided to appoint a senior person in DUE for each relationship. I will work with that person to make sure the relationship is doing well. The senior people in DUE are as follows:

  • IST – Vijay Kumar

  • DSL - Elizabeth Reed

  • Graduate Students Office – Betsy Hicks

Special Projects

Peggy Enders has been undertaking a comprehensive planning process for our response to a pandemic of avain flu. This has resulted in a much better understanding of our critical operations and how we would support each other in such an emergency.