The one-year long ODGE strategic planning process involved extensive interaction with and input from graduate students, faculty, administrators, and staff. The focus was on-campus residential graduate education, in the context of a largely decentralized MIT infrastructure where individual graduate programs and faculty members possess great autonomy in directing graduate education in their disciplines. Five major themes emerged, and are summarized below. The resultant plan takes us “From Imagination to Impact: Empowering graduate students to create the future.”
The Office of the Dean for Graduate Education (ODGE) supports and serves individual graduate students, programs, and schools in order to make graduate education at MIT empowering, exciting, holistic, and transformative.
We envision a graduate community of scholars whose members are ever more intellectually and socially engaged, valued, interactive, and rapidly connected to resources, information, each other, the Institute, the nation, and the world.
The Office of the Dean for Graduate Education upholds the values of the Institute, including egalitarianism, collaboration, community, and making a difference. The ODGE is especially committed to fostering excellence and quality through the values of dedication to serving students, caring about all members of the community, and inclusivity of diverse backgrounds and perspectives.
STRATEGIC THEME ONE: SUPPORTING EDUCATIONAL INNOVATION AND EXCELLENCE
This first strategic theme focuses on three main areas: 1) promoting the value and quality of graduate education at MIT through oral, electronic, and print materials; 2) facilitating and supporting innovation in graduate programs and cross-disciplinary interactions to foster intellectual networks, serve as a source of inspiration, and stimulate idea generation; and 3) encouraging academic integrity and responsible conduct of research.
STRATEGIC THEME TWO: COMPETITIVENESS IN GRADUATE FUNDING
This objective aims to ensure that all admitted graduate students can complete their chosen degrees in an appropriate time frame and thrive in the MIT educational environment without imposing undue financial hardship on themselves or their families. In particular, it involves fund-raising, support, and stewardship of graduate fellowships and graduate education initiatives; energizing communications, interactions, and recognition of graduate alumni; and collecting, analyzing and disseminating Institute-wide financial data.
STRATEGIC THEME THREE: ADMINISTRATION AND POLICY
This aim strives to build an office culture of collaboration, teamwork, appreciation, respect, and excellence, and to provide the highest quality of services to individual graduate students, graduate programs, and schools. More specifically, it seeks to maximize staff professional development and collaboration, and to enhance educational systems and increase digitization in the areas of graduate administration.
STRATEGIC THEME FOUR: DIVERSITY AND CLIMATE
This goal focuses on promoting an inclusive environment that intellectually and socially engages, embraces, and values all members of the MIT community in order to support retention and academic excellence. Proposed activities include climate assessment; cohort- and community-building; “bridging activities” that better connect students to their graduate programs; Institute-level communications; collection and management of diversity data; as well as amplified diversity recruitment efforts.
STRATEGIC THEME FIVE: HOLISTIC GRADUATE STUDENT EXPERIENCE
This pursuit strives to enhance the professional and personal success of our graduate students by strengthening personal support, information access, resource training, work-life balance, transferable skills, and community-building.