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  • Welcome to the firsDean Daniel Hastingst edition of the DUE-wide newsletter. I have been proud to serve as Dean for Undergraduate Education for a full year. This year has been one of change, learning to work together in new and exciting ways and of defining our future together. For any organization at any time, it is important that there be high bandwidth communications that are open, continuous and reliable. This is especially important when the organization is faced with internal and external change. We will use this newsletter and other communication channels to discuss these changes, internal and external, as well as to support several other objectives that I will lay out below.

  • Terascopers setup exhibit at the Aquarium of the PacificLast year, students in Terrascope, one of MIT’s alternative freshman programs, created an interactive museum in Lobby 13, where hundreds of visitors learned about the science of tsunamis and about the devastating effects of a tsunami that struck Valdivia, Chile, in 1960. Now they are taking their work to a much wider audience—the 1.4 million visitors expected to pass through a new exhibit opening this summer at the Aquarium of the Pacific, in Long Beach, California.

  • On January 3, Student Financial Services (SFS) launched a brand new website http://web.mit.edu/sfs . Our site was redesigned with the goal of presenting SFS as an integrated MIT unit that offers a variety of interrelated services for students and their parents. We present SFS information and services from the viewpoint of our target users who seek answers to questions such as:SFS Logo

    • How do I apply for financial aid?

    • How is MIT financial aid allocated?

    • What are some ways I can finance my MIT education?

    • How do I get my student bill, and how can I make payments electronically?

    • What loans are available to me as a U.S. or international undergraduate, graduate student or parent?

    • How do I apply for and repay a student loan?

    • How can I find a term-time job?

    • How do I advertise a student job opening and hire a student?

    • How may I use my Federal Work-Study allocation?

  • The MIT community and their children are invited to a fun and educational event on Tuesday 20 February from 5:30 to 7PM in the Stata Center. The event will include a sneak preview of DESIGN SQUAD -- a new children's television show produced by WGBH and featuring kids engaged in designing and building machines. The program has many strong connections to MIT -- it was filmed on campus, is co- hosted by an MIT graduate student, features additional MIT students in episodes, and has two MIT faculty serving as advisors.

  • What are DUE’s strategic priorities? By now many of you are aware that DUE is in the process of implementing a strategic plan developed during the first half of 2006 with input from DUE staff, faculty and other MIT colleagues. In creating the plan, we considered concerns facing higher education as well as our own experiences with MIT students and faculty. Through this process, we developed a vision for the future and established six strategic themes to move us toward that vision.

    Our themes (see our strategic plan) and their leaders: 

    • Develop a Holistic Student Experience - Julie Norman

    • Provide Global Educational Opportunities - Kim Vandiver

    • Champion and Increase Pipeline Diversity- Karl Reid

    • Champion Information Technology - Mary Callahan

    • Advance from Teaching to Learning in the Classroom - Lori Breslow

    • Catalyze the Undergraduate Educational Commons - Peggy Enders

  • In the spring of 2017, the Office of Minority Education (OME) and Global Education and Career Development’s (GECD) Prehealth Advising team collaborated to offer drop-in services on-site at OME. In this pilot effort, Prehealth Advising staff met with students interested in medical careers and answered their questions.

    With 16 students participating over three days, it was a successful initiative. “Having pre-health drop-ins in the OME was very convenient,” says Hermoon Worku ’17. “Because I’ve worked with and been a part of the OME community/family for the last four years, it was also a place I felt comfortable and supported, which was nice because sometimes the task of applying to medical school can feel daunting and make me feel out of place. I think the sessions also showed the Prehealth Office’s clear dedication to all MIT students interested in medical professions, and their willingness to partner with the OME emphasized their support of students of color, who are typically underrepresented in medicine and medical schools.”

    Prehealth Advising offers regular drop-in hours during the academic year at GECD’s office to discuss topics ranging from course selection to deciding where to apply to medical school. Recognizing that these services could be made even more accessible, especially to underrepresented populations, Prehealth Advising eagerly accepted OME’s proposal to offer advising services in their office space.

    “The OME is always looking for ways to better serve students. In fact, the students were the first to recommend that the OME engage more deeply in Prehealth Advising,” notes OME Director and Associate Dean DiOnetta Jones Crayton. “This is how the idea for Prehealth Advising hours in the OME came to fruition. We are looking forward to offering the program again during the academic year..."

  • Under the leadership of Sharon Bridburg (HR) and DiOnetta Jones Crayton (OME), DUE has created a new Diversity and Inclusion Council (DDIC). The Council’s mission is to advocate and work for diversity and inclusion within DUE by defining and executing actions that will make MIT a more inclusive community, at home and abroad.

    DUE DDICFostering diversity is already a mission of DUE, and diversity and inclusion are core values per DUE’s Strategic Plan. Founding Council members believe that a culture of inclusion requires more than an assertion of shared values; it requires sustained effort and the leadership of many across our community. The Council plans to assess DUE’s current efforts surrounding diversity and inclusion, and identify new opportunities and strategies to promote a diverse and inclusive workplace.

    Creation of the DDIC was influenced by local and national events that have highlighted deep divisions between Americans around issues such as race, class, and transphobia. In the last few years, student protests on college campuses across the country have increasingly focused on practices and policies with the potential to erode community and perpetuate discrimination and oppression...

  • At D-Lab, we believe that the best way for students to become global agents of change and collaboration is to send them into the field. That's why every January over MIT's Independent Activities Period, D-Lab provides students enrolled in our classes with an opportunity to gain valuable fieldwork experience around the world. This year, 52 MIT, Harvard, and Wellesley students traveled to 12 countries in Latin America, Africa, and Asia to perform user needs research, build prototypes, and exchange knowledge with our valued community partners.

  • Enhancements aim to make processes clearer, easier to navigate, and more supportive.

    Chancellor Cynthia Barnhart announced today, in a letter to the MIT community, a “roadmap for change” in MIT’s undergraduate withdrawal and readmission policies. The enhancements are based on a comprehensive review conducted by the Committee on Academic Performance (CAP) and the Office of the Dean for Undergraduate Education (DUE).

  • The Edgerton Center may pride itself on being among the most interesting places at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, but it sure doesn’t look it from the street: A machine shop and garage for student projects, the center is tucked inside Building N51, one of those old, nondescript brick-and-concrete structures that dot the Cambridge campus.