News & Video

April 18, 2014

Volunteer for Ask a Scientist! Apr. 19

Are you passionate about science?  Do you like teaching or explaining things?  Volunteer with the “Ask a Scientist!” team at the Cambridge Science Festival, to be held at the Cambridge Public Library on Saturday, April 19th, 2014, from 12:00pm to 2:00pm or from 2:00pm to 4:00pm.  Help answer the attending kids’ most intriguing scientific questions!  Register online.  Contact drolnick@mit.edu for more information.

April 18, 2014

Teaching, Perception, and Public Space: Apr. 18 and 19

“Perception requires involvement,” warns Antoni Muntadas, ACT Professor of the Practice. After twenty-four years of teaching at MIT, Muntadas is retiring this spring to focus on his extensive projects. Spanning over four decades, his art and pedagogy are rich in aphoristic observations. His classes and artistic practice dissect and reveal encoded systems of control and power hierarchies within media culture, architecture, and urban life by examining the intersection of language, media, and public space. On Friday and Saturday, April 18th and 19th, 2014, ACT will host a symposium and exhibition on Public Space to celebrate the legacy of Muntadas’s artistic and educational practice.

Muntadas has marked his students profoundly. Alumnus Matthew Mazzotta, who recently designed Open House, a public theater and community center in York, Louisiana, writes: “Muntadas definitely had a huge influence on my time in grad school and now as a working artist. I still quote him to this day – successful art projects have ‘one point of entry, but many interpretations.’” More information is available here.

April 18, 2014

Easter Dinner for CASPAR Apr. 19

Join the Graduate Christian Fellowship in cooking an Easter dinner for the CASPAR Homeless Shelter on Saturday, April 19th, 2014, either from 12:00pm to 3:00pm or from 3:00pm to 6:00pm.  Cooking will take place in the CASPAR Shelter, across from Ashdown.  The team will buy food from Costco during the first shift.  During the second shift, the team will cook and serve food at CASPAR.  Contact mit-gcf-steer@mit.edu if you are interested in helping.

April 18, 2014

Dhoom: The Bollywood Dance Party Apr. 19

Sangam presents the Bollywood Dance Night “DHOOM” on Saturday, April 19th, 2014 from 8:00pm to 11:00pm in the Student Center, MIT Room W20-208.  Dance your heart out to super-hit Bollywood numbers as the DJ plays all of your favorite songs.  Dress up in bright Spring colors and get a chance to win some exciting prizes.  Enjoy Indian snacks and drinks as well!  For those affiliated with MIT, admission is free for those who register, otherwise it’s $2 at the door.  For all else, admission is $5 at the door.  Contact sangam-request@mit.edu for more information.

April 17, 2014

National Differences in an International Classroom Apr. 18

On Friday, April 18 2 PM in 4-237, come to National Differences in an International Classroom, an Xtalk that highlights interesting systematic differences in performance and behaviors for students and countries with different characteristics such as language, internet availability, and income. Dr. Lori Breslow and Dr. Jennifer DeBoer will be speaking. Breslow is director of the Teaching and Learning Lab at MIT and a senior lecturer at Sloan. DeBoer is a post-doctoral associate for education research at TLL. For more information, visit the event page.

April 17, 2014

Rebecca Richards-Kortum speaking TODAY

As part of the Institute for Medical Engineering and Science (IMES) Distinguished Speaker Series, Rebecca Richards-Kortum of Rice University will speak at MIT on Thursday, April 17th, 2014 from 4:00pm to 6:00pm in MIT Room 3-270.  She is the Stanley C. Moore Professor of Bioengineering at Rice University.  Her work focuses on translating research that integrates advances in nanotechnology and molecular imaging with microfabrication technologies to develop optical imaging systems that are inexpensive, portable, and provide point-of-care diagnosis.  She will talk about how these low-cost, high-performance optical technologies can meet the health needs of the world.  For more information, visit the IMES website.

April 17, 2014

Strengthening Partnerships: A Free Interactive Workshop Apr. 19

Therapist Andrew Miser, Ph.D. and Martha Miser, Ph.D. are coming to MIT to give a free half-day workshop on Saturday, April 19th, 2014, from 1:00pm to 4:00pm in the Stata Center, Star Room (32-D463).  They will provide tools for connecting with each other, communicating effectively, and decreasing daily stress.  The workshop is interactive and for everyone and all types of relationships (couples, individuals, spouses, partners, boyfriends, girlfriends).  Space is limited and registration is required online.  Refreshments will be provided.  Contact gsc-hca-family-chair@mit.edu for more information.

April 17, 2014

Remembrance for Officer Sean Collier Apr. 18

Friday, April 18th, 2014 marks the first anniversary of the death of MIT Police Officer Sean Collier, who was killed while protecting our community.  President Rafael Reif says that he, “was a young man with a wonderful spirit of kindness, service, curiosity and play, and an extraordinary ability to touch the hearts of everyone around him. Through the example of his life, and through our shared experience after his death, he taught us the power of community in ways that no one present at the time will ever forget.”

There will be two events honoring Officer Sean Collier’s sacrifice and celebrating his life on Friday, April 18th, 2014.  These events will both take place on MIT’s North Court and are open to the entire MIT community.

  • Ceremony of Remembrance
    9:30am to 10:30am
    This formal ceremony will provide an opportunity to honor Officer Collier, to express respect and gratitude for the MIT Police and all first responders, and to preview renderings of the permanent memorial for Officer Collier designed by Professor Meejin Yoon.
  • Community Picnic and Rally for the “MIT Strong” Marathon Team
    1:00pm to 2:30pm
    This picnic will serve as a rally for the MIT Strong team, a group of students, faculty, staff, and alumni who are running this year’s Boston Marathon on Monday, April 21st, 2014 to honor Officer Collier and generate support for the Collier Fund at MIT.  If you plan to cheer the team on in person at the Marathon, you may pick up a free “MIT Strong” sign from CopyTech in MIT Room 11-004.

April 16, 2014

Papers on bankruptcy protection, autism diagnosis win second annual MIT Sloan doctoral research forum

Felipe Severino won first prize at MIT Sloan’s 2014 doctoral research forum for his paper “Personal Bankruptcy Protection and Household Debt.” Severino, a PhD candidate in financial economics, showed that increased personal bankruptcy protection levels in the U.S. raised the volume of credit card debt, but did not increase credit card delinquency or correlate to increased riskiness in the pool of borrowers.

Second place went to Phech Colatat, a PhD candidate in economic sociology, for his paper “Imprinting Variation: The Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder at Two Specialty Clinics.” In the paper, Colatet examined autism diagnosis at clinics managed by Kaiser Permanente Northern California. He found “substantial variation” in diagnosis rates, but described ways work at the clinical level could stabilize those rates.

Read the rest of the article in the MIT Sloan School of Management Newsroom.

April 16, 2014

Seeking Graduate Reps for the MIT Grand Junction Planning Advisory Committee by Apr. 17!

Join the MIT Grand Junction Planning Advisory Committee, and have an impact on the future of MIT Campus Planning!  The first meeting in on Wednesday, May 7th, 2014 from 3:30pm to 4:30pm in the Aruba Conference room inside MIT Building NE49.  Email your resume and a short statement to gsc-nominations@mit.edu by Thursday, April 17th, 2014.  MIT has agreed to conduct a study of the feasibility of allowing a regional bicycle and pedestrian path on the property it owns along the Grand Junction railroad track, focused on the land from Main Street to W59.  The City of Cambridge has been interested in this for some time, but MIT has had a number of unanswered questions about the compatibility and safety of such a pathway in this location.  MIT is hoping that this study can provide a shared understanding of the nature of the opportunity and the associated challenges.  MIT plans to have faculty and student representation, along with Cambridge residents and officials, on a small advisory group to respond to the study as it is performed by a consultant yet to be selected.  There will be approximately six meetings of the advisory group, starting with a review of the consultant RFP, proposal review, and then providing reaction to study progress and the draft report.  The final report is to be submitted to the Cambridge City Council no later than September 2014.  Have an impact on the future of MIT!

April 16, 2014

GSC Student-Faculty Dinner with Prof. Solomon Apr. 17

The first GSC student-faculty dinner will take place on Thursday, April 17th, 2014 at 6:00pm with Professor Frank Solomon.  Professor Solomon is a biology professor working on personalized medicine at the Koch Institute at MIT.  This is a great chance to talk with Professor Solomon about his research, your interests, jobs, or MIT in general, in a less formal and less crowded way.  The first eight students who sign up will go to the dinner.  However, please sign up even if there are already more than eight students, as the next few people will be on a waitlist should there be any last-minute cancellations.  Please sign up here.  Contact alina_22@mit.edu for more information.

April 16, 2014

Meet Master Printer Jim Stroud Apr. 17

Visit Center Street Studio in Milton, MA and meet with master printer Jim Stroud to explore contemporary printmaking on Thursday, April 17th, 2014, from 6:00pm to 8:00pm.  Free transportation will be provided from the MIT campus.  Take this opportunity to view demos of printmaking techniques, browse completed works around the studio, help select a print to be added to the List Visual Art Center’s Student Loan Art Program, and more.  This event is open to MIT graduate students.  Spaces are limited.  Advanced registration is required by emailing cklemens@mit.edu.

April 15, 2014

Should You Mention Your Blog in Your Job Application?

Karen Kelsky, an academic career coach at The Professor Is In, discusses when it is appropriate to include one’s personal blog in a job application:

“This is one of those issues that is evolving very quickly. As of this moment, my advice is that you should consider listing your blog in applications, as long as it meets a few standards.

“First off, consider your blog from various angles. Take appearance: Does it look decent visually? It doesn’t have to be anything fancy—the world of academia continues to be a world of very bare-bones Internet style. But it does have to communicate a certain level of professionalism and orderliness consistent with the rest of your job market materials. You can’t have misspellings or glaring typos, for example, whereas you must have appropriate visuals, fonts, and a writing style that communicate a scholarly persona…” Continue reading on Vitae. Photo by photologue_np.

April 15, 2014

AeroAstro Centennial Seminar Series: General Janet Wolfenbarger Apr. 16

The year 2014 marks 100 years of aerospace studies at MIT, and the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics is celebrating through a Centennial Seminar Series.  The first seminar will take place on Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 at 10:00am in the Stata Center, Room 123.  The speaker will be General Janet Wolfenbarger, a Course 16 alum and Commander of the Air Force Material Command.  Breakfast will be available prior to the talk.

April 15, 2014

Climate Change Speaker Series with James Hansen TODAY

Calling all youths (and those young at heart) to action!  As part of the Climate Change Speaker Series, world-famous climate scientist James Hansen will be giving a talk Combatting the Climate Crisis: The Path from Science to Action at MIT on Tuesday, April 15th, 2014, from 5:00pm to 7:30pm in MIT Room 10-250.  Hansen is a former Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies and is Adjunct Professor at Columbia University’s Earth Institute.  He was named as one of Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people in 2006.  Contact fossilfree@mit.edu for more information.

April 15, 2014

SpringFest Concert on Apr. 26!

Tickets are now on sale for MIT Students for the SpringFest Concert, to be held on Saturday, April 26th, 2014 at 8:00pm in the Z-Center (Johnson Athletic Center).  The doors will open at 7:00pm and will close at 9:30pm.  The concert features Capital Cities and Flosstradamus!  Tickets are $15 for MIT students and $20 for MIT affiliates.  If you’d like to volunteer, register online.  Contact ua-events@mit.edu for more information.

April 14, 2014

Graduate engineers design ‘living materials’

Inspired by natural materials such as bone — a matrix of minerals and other substances, including living cells — MIT engineers have coaxed bacterial cells to produce biofilms that can incorporate nonliving materials, such as gold nanoparticles and quantum dots.

These “living materials” combine the advantages of live cells, which respond to their environment, produce complex biological molecules, and span multiple length scales, with the benefits of nonliving materials, which add functions such as conducting electricity or emitting light.

The new materials represent a simple demonstration of the power of this approach, which could one day be used to design more complex devices such as solar cells, self-healing materials, or diagnostic sensors, says Timothy Lu, an assistant professor of electrical engineering and biological engineering. Lu is the senior author of a paper describing the living functional materials in the March 23 issue of Nature Materials.

The paper’s lead author is Allen Chen, an MIT-Harvard MD-PhD student. Other authors are postdocs Zhengtao Deng, Amanda Billings, Urartu Seker, and Bijan Zakeri; recent MIT graduate Michelle Lu; and graduate student Robert Citorik.

Read the article on MIT news.

April 14, 2014

Share your interview experiences on Apr. 15

Interview season is coming to an end.  Did you enjoy talking to people in various positions about your skills, experiences, and personalities?  Did you suffer solving problems with time slowly running out?  Share your interview experiences with fellow students over dinner on Tuesday, April 15th, 2014, from 5:00pm to 6:00pm in MIT Room 32-144.  Three recent graduates are invited to talk about their interviewing experiences for academic, engineering, and finance jobs.  Ask questions and get more skills!  No registration is required, but spots and food are limited, so please come on time.  Contact gsc-arc@mit.edu for more information.

April 14, 2014

Summer Teaching Certificate Program (Register TODAY)

The Teaching and Learning Lab will be offering its Teaching Certificate Program this summer in an accelerated format. This workshop series is for students and postdocs interested in developing their teaching skills as well as those who are planning careers in academe. To earn a certificate, students must participate in 7 classroom workshops and a videotaped teaching/lesson presentation. Registration is required and will open at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, April 14th. (Mark your calendars now! Space is limited and all sections are usually full 24-48 hours after registration opens).

The Summer Program kicks off on Tuesday, May 27th, with the first workshop: Students as Learners, You as Teacher. There will be five sections offered, with one reserved for students in NON-science/engineering departments. For more information, visit the program website. For any questions about the program, please contact Leann Dobranski (leann@mit.edu). Photo by Vandy CFT.

April 14, 2014

5000 Moving Parts at MIT Museum (through Nov. 30)

Melding art, science, history and technology, 5000 Moving Parts features sculptures by Anne Lilly, John Douglas Powers, Takis, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer and Arthur Ganson in collaboration with sound artist Christina Campanella.

The exhibition looks at the wide range of kinetic art being made now: from work that’s concerned entirely with motion and unpredictability, to sculptures that engage with contemporary political topics, to work that brings ancient myth into contemporary life.

Learn more about the artists and the exhibition at the MIT Museum page.

April 11, 2014

The No-Fail Secret to Writing a Dissertation

Theresa MacPhail, an Assistant Professor and Faculty Fellow at New York University, explains the best way to write a dissertation:

“As a former journalist, assistant professor, and seasoned dissertation-writing-workshop coach at New York University, I can promise you there is only one fail-safe method, one secret, one guaranteed trick that you need in order to finish your dissertation: Write.

“That’s it. Seriously. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but there are no magical shortcuts to the production of prose, academic or otherwise. If you want to complete your dissertation in a reasonable amount of time—and trust me, you do—you must learn to prioritize the act of writing itself and write every day. Writing must become a non-negotiable part of your daily routine…” Continue reading on Vitae. Photo by jjpacres.

April 11, 2014

Exploring Reality from a Baha’i Perspective on Apr. 14

Explore reality from a Baha’i perspective on Monday, April 14th. 2014 at 6:00pm in MIT Room W20-303.  Discover scientific faith and empirical religion, and discuss quotations from historic thinkers and passages from Baha’i writings.  This is part of an ongoing series through May.  Contact dsgray@gmail.com or visit the website for more information.

April 11, 2014

Kids Clothing and Toy Exchange on Apr. 14!

Take part in the MIT Kids Clothing and Toy Exchange on Monday, April 14th, 2014, from 9:30am to 1:00pm in the Student Center, Room 491.  The exchange will include kids clothing, outerwear, shoes, toys, and books for children ages 0 to 5.  Items will be organized by gender and size so particular items can be found easily.  You do not need to bring clothes to participate!  Drop off will commence for the first hour and a half.  Pick up begins at 11:00am.  Contact cmmassey09@gmail.com for more information.

April 11, 2014

April Social Science Happy Hour TODAY

Come to the April Social Science Happy Hour on Friday, April 11th, 2014 at 5:30pm in MIT Room E18-202.  Join the discussion on social science research while enjoying food, beverages, and the company of social science researchers.  All are welcome!  Contact gea-officers@mit.edu for more information.

April 10, 2014

Congratulations to the 2014-15 GSC officers!

The Graduate Student Council has elected a new officer team for the 2014-2015 academic year.  The incoming officers will begin their terms on Wednesday, May 7th, 2014.  The new officers are:

  • President: Kendall Nowocin (EECS) Pictured top right
  • Vice-President: Francesco Bellei (EECS) Pictured top left
  • Secretary: Christopher Aakre (Biology) Pictured bottom Left
  • Treasurer: Shabnam Raayai Ardakani (MechE) Pictured bottom Right

Congratulations to the new team!

April 10, 2014

MIT Africa Innovate Conference Apr. 11-12

Join the MIT Africa Innovate Conference to hear from amazing speakers and learn more about the emerging ideas that are shaping Africa’s future.  The conference will take place on Friday, April 11th, and Saturday, April 12th, 2014 in the MIT Media Lab.  There will be panels on energy, healthcare innovations, investment, technology, women, and venture incubation.  There will also be a business plan competition, a hackathon, vision talks, and keynotes.  Buy tickets and find out more about the conference by visiting the website.  Email questions to africabcofficers@sloan.mit.edu.

April 10, 2014

SIAM & CCE Student Seminar: Topological Microfluidics TODAY

Come to the SIAM & CCE Student Seminar on Thursday, April 10th, 2014, at 4:00pm in MIT Room 4-237.  The topic for this seminar will be Topological Microfluidics: Exploring anisotropic fluids in microfluidic environment, with speaker Anupam Sengupta, Roman Stocker group, CEE.  Light refreshments will be served.

Liquid crystals (LCs) are complex anisotropic fluids, well-known for display applications. Their properties are in contrast to the isotropic fluids which we typically encounter in state-of- the-art microfluidic science and technology. This allows us to explore LCs as a suitable functional material for developing a microfluidic technology which harnesses the coupling interactions between the flow, the molecular orientation, and the ordering or topology of the system.

The MIT chapter of The Society for Applied and Industrial Mathematics (SIAM) is open to both undergraduate and graduate students who are interested in applied mathematics, computational science and mathematical applications in an engineering field.  Visit their website for more information.

April 10, 2014

CAMIT Grants Deadline Extended to Apr. 11!

MIT students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to apply for Council for the Arts Grants to support arts projects in all disciplines.  Awards range from hundreds to thousands of dollars.  The Grants Committee supports projects that offer MIT community members opportunities to create, participate in, and learn about the arts.  The next application deadline has been extended to Friday, April 11th, 2014.  Any student currently receiving academic credit from MIT, or current MIT staff and faculty are eligible to apply for Grants Program funding.  Applicants may submit proposals individually or on behalf of a group or organization.  See the website for more information.

April 9, 2014

Family and friends recall graduate student Hadi Kasab

When Hadi Kasab was a boy in Lebanon, he went through a phase of carrying a small briefcase to school. “He already knew that he wanted to be an engineer,” Kasab’s younger sister, Jana, recalls — and the young Hadi thought that carrying a briefcase was something all engineers did. Her brother never lost his sense of wonderment at the world, Jana Kasab says: “He was really always a 5-year-old on the inside.”

“He was very quiet most of the time,” Jana Kasab says. “We used to say that he lived in his own world.” At a kindergarten graduation ceremony, her distracted but driven brother marched straight across the stage, without even stopping to receive his certificate.

He was also humble, Jana Kasab says: “My mother was once chatting with Hadi via Skype. She was telling him about people’s reactions when they found out that her son is in MIT. Hadi hated that. He didn’t like to gloat about it — but Mom, as a proud parent, did. So he promised Mom that he’d buy her an umbrella with the MIT logo on it, so that she’d stop telling people that her son is in MIT, and instead people would take the initiative to ask her.”

Read the article on MIT news.

April 9, 2014

2014 Legatum Conference on May 10

Come to the 2014 Legatum Conference Elements of Entrepreneurship on Saturday, May 10th, 2014 in the MIT Media Lab.  This year’s conference will have four panels.  One panel discussion will focus on businesses created from the earth, agri-business in Africa.  We will explore Latin American technology ventures conducting business through the air.  Fire being the oldest form of energy used by man, we will look at some of Asia’s newest innovations in energy production.  Finally, we will learn about successful entrepreneurs and the investment in innovation springing up by the water of the Persian Gulf.  The experts and entrepreneurs speaking at this year’s conference will ground us, breathe life into new ideas, ignite our passion for innovation, and sustain us.  The speakers will include Jeff Hoffman, Founder & CEO, Priceline, uBid.com, Colorjar; David Auerbach, Co-Founder, Sanergy, Legatum Fellow, MIT 2011; and Dr. Franklin Chang Diaz, Founder, Chairman & CEO, Ad Astra Rocket Company, MIT 1977.  Register online.

April 9, 2014

Nautical Night at the MIT Museum on Apr. 11

Dive into a variety of exciting ocean-related activities ranging from marine biology to nautical design at Nautical Night in the MIT Museum on Friday, April 11th, 2014 from 5:00pm to 8:00pm.  Learn how metalwork and 3D printing are used in nautical engineering, and then explore a fascinating world of undersea microbes.  Try your hand at both traditional and modern shipbuilding techniques, and get a firsthand look at objects from the MIT Museum’s Hart Nautical Collection.  Explore activities by the MIT Foundry and Forge, Oceans at MIT, Sea Perch, and more!  Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students and seniors.  MIT cardholders and alumni have free admission to the event.

April 8, 2014

Explore HST research topics at the Forum on Apr. 10

Come to the 2014 HST Forum, an annual showcase of student research, to be held in the TMEC Atrium at Harvard Medical School on Thursday, April 10th, 2014, from 1:00pm to 6:30pm.  The Forum is a great opportunity to support HST students and the program as a whole, as well as discover current research projects. Take this opportunity to share ideas and connect with members of the HST community.  For more information and to RSVP, visit the website.

April 8, 2014

GWAMIT Spring Empowerment Conference Apr. 10-17

Come hear established women speak about secrets of their professional and personal success at the GWAMIT Spring Empowerment Conference, taking place from Thursday, April 10th to the 17th, 2014, in the Stata Center and Student Center.  The opening keynote will feature Debora Spar, author and President of Barnard College, speaking about “Wonder Women: Sex, Power, and The Quest for Perfection.”  Mentoring discussion will include Eve Marder of Brandeis University and Kay Tye of MIT; they will discuss the keys to finding great mentors, as well as the secrets to becoming one yourself.  Judy Shen-Filerman, CEO of Dreambridge Partners, will speak about becoming a storyteller of your best self.  Ruha Benjamin of Boston University will conclude the event with the closing keynote, a talk entitled, “Playing the game or hacking the system: A talk and discussion on subverting systems of power.”  Register for the event online.  Contact gwamit-spring@mit.edu for more information.

April 8, 2014

MIT Comedy Night TONIGHT

Come to MIT Comedy Night, featuring headliner Erin Judge from Comedy Central!  The event will take place on Tuesday, April 8th, 2014, at 8:00pm in the Thirsty Ear Pub, Ashdown House.  The host is Thom Crowley, and featured comedians include Ian Blau, Bryce Hanson, Adam Langois, Emma Willmann, and Jeff Young.  Snacks and soda will be provided!  Keep in mind that a 21+ government ID and an MIT ID are required for entry.  Please have your ID ready to show at the door.  Contact teec-comedy@mit.edu for more information.

April 7, 2014

Lue captures 3-D images of cells

In 2007, MIT scientists developed a type of microscopy that allowed them to detail the interior of a living cell in three dimensions, without adding any fluorescent markers or other labels. This technique also revealed key properties, such as the cells’ density.

Now the researchers have adapted that method so they can image cells as they flow through a tiny microfluidic channel — an important step toward cell-sorting systems that could help scientists separate stem cells at varying stages of development, or to distinguish healthy cells from cancerous cells.

A key feature of the new MIT system is the use of a focused laser beam that can illuminate cells from many different angles, allowing the researchers to analyze the scattered light from the cells as they flow across the beam. Using a technique known as off-axis digital holography, the researchers can instantaneously record both the amplitude and phase of scattered light at each location of the cells.

“As the cell flows across, we can effectively illuminate the entire sample from all angles without having to rotate a light source or the cell,” says former MIT graduate student Niyom Lue, a coauthor of the new paper.

Read the article on MIT news.

April 7, 2014

MLK Visiting Scholar Luncheon on Apr. 9

The Institute Community and Equity Office invites you to attend their next luncheon seminar series presentation with LeManuel Lee Bitsoi, Ed.D. of Harvard University.  The luncheon will take place on Wednesday, April 9th, 2014 from 12:00pm to 1:30pm in MIT Room E51-372.  This series highlights the work of MIT’s MLK, Jr. Visiting Professors and Scholars, other MIT community members, and those connected to the program whose work honors the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Information about the MLK Visitors program and the current scholars is available online.  Lunch will be served.  Please RSVP to Shauna Bush-Fenty at sfenty@mit.edu.

April 7, 2014

Interfaith Dialogue on Apr. 8

Please join MIT’s Addir Fellows at Reaching for the Heights: The role of women in Catholicism, Islam and Orthodox Judaism, an interfaith dialogue and panel on Tuesday, April 8th at 7:30 PM in W11 (The Main Reading Room). The panelists will discuss their connection to the theology, spirituality and/or culture of their religion and talk about how the role of women is (or is not) changing. Dessert will be available. Photo by Dima Konsewitch.

April 4, 2014

Printed cupcakes at the push of a button

What would you like on top of your next birthday cake? Maybe a tall Dr. Who TARDIS, or a Breaking Bad Heisenberg hat? How about a custom design from your imagination? Wei Wu, MBA ’15, and Jamison Go, SM ’15, have constructed a 3D printer that extrudes frosting—any kind, in any shape you dictate—onto a cupcake. Their 3Delicious pitch was a semifinalist in the products and services track of this year’s MIT $100K Accelerate Contest, and they were invited back for the wild card round. “I think they have something that could really disrupt the food industry,” says competition judge Gaurav Jain, a principal with the Cambridge-based venture fund Founder Collective.

With the original 3D printing patents expiring in the last couple of years, startups in the space have begun to proliferate—and to cash out. For example, Jain’s firm was a seed-stage investor in MakerBot, which sold last summer to Stratasys for a reported $403 million in stock plus $201 million in earn-outs. “They aim to make 3D printers as universal as inkjet printers,” Jain says.

Read the rest of the article in the MIT Sloan School of Management Newsroom Photo courtesy 3Delicious. 

April 4, 2014

The Meaning of Suffering with Peter Kreeft TODAY

If there is a God who is all-powerful and all-loving, why is there suffering in the world?  Come join philosopher Dr. Peter Kreeft in the TCC Friday Night Supper The Meaning of Suffering on Friday, April 4th, 2014 at 7:00pm in the Burton Connor Porter Room.  Listen, ask questions, and share your opinions.  All are welcome!  A free community dinner will be provided, and vegetarian options are available.  Contact jdesa@mit.edu for more information.

April 4, 2014

Keeril Makan performance Apr. 5

On Saturday, April 5th from 8 – 9 PM in Killian Hall, Either/Or presents works of MIT composer Keeril Makan. It will be the world premiere of Letting Time Circle Through Us. Jennifer Choi will be playing violin, Russel Greenber percussion, Taka Kigawa the piano, Wendy Law the cello, Dan Lippel the guitar, and David Shively the cimbalom. This is a free event! Check out other music and theater arts events happening in April.

April 3, 2014

The Professor Is In: Choosing the Right Holding Pattern

The job search isn’t looking so great (I’m an ABD candidate in biological anthropology with big grants and first author pubs under a well-known advisor, but no takers so far). I am trying to have a number of other options explored well in advance, including collaborating on postdoc fellowship applications.

However, if nothing comes through by this summer, what is the best thing for me to do for the next year? Should I: 1) attempt to cobble together some adjunct classes? 2) try to get a nonacademic job that pays better (say, as a statistician at the Department of Labor)? Or 3) live off my parents and my small savings and just focus on publishing my dissertation results and other papers? I am feeling rather defeated, but I’m not ready to break up with academia.

To read Karen Kelsky’s response, visit Vitae.

April 3, 2014

On Parenting and Pedagogy

“You need a haircut. Your hair is out of control.” That’s not what I expected a student to interject during what I’d hoped was an insightful and informative lecture on the politics of slavery in the antebellum United States. But Lauren (not her real name) had a habit of interrupting with socially inappropriate comments, as students on the autism spectrum are wont to do. Shocked, the other students in the class awaited my response.

Not long ago, I might have subjected Lauren to a withering tirade concerning the gender politics of her remark. But as the mother of a precocious five-year-old, I’ve grown accustomed to dealing with such personal and public challenges to my authority—and I now take them in stride. I’ve developed a thicker skin and, hopefully, a healthy sense of humor. So instead of chastising her, I laughed and said, “Thanks for the observation,” and moved on. Only after class did I take Lauren aside to explain that, while I did need a haircut, it was inappropriate to say so in the middle of the lecture.

I think of small episodes like this whenever I read one of the scores of articles about the difficulties of juggling career and family. The two are often cast as being deeply at odds, and having children generally figures as an obstacle to professional fulfillment.

Continue reading on Vitae. Photo by

April 3, 2014

Tax Workshop TODAY

PricewaterhouseCoopers (pwc) will be returning to the MIT campus this week and speak at the tax workshop on Thursday, April 3rd, 2014, from 2:00pm to 3:30pm in the Student Center, Room 491.  The workshop is for domestic (US Citizens and US Permanent Residents) graduate students.  There was a separate tax workshop for international students back in February.  Please note that they will not provide individual tax advice to students.  The purpose of the workshop is to present general guidelines and resources that would be helpful for students to file their tax returns.  If you have any questions, please contact Keiko Tanaka at ktanaka@mit.edu.

April 3, 2014

Dr. Pamela Bush to speak about diversity on Apr. 3

Dr. Pamela McCauley Bush, Ph.D., will be speaking at the True Diversity: A Multiplier in Global STEM Innovation event on Thursday, April 3rd, 2014, from 4:00pm to 5:00pm in MIT Room 1-190.  Dr. Bush will address the critical importance of holistic diversity in STEM education, leadership, and innovation.  She will present statistics, best practices, and practical examples to validate the impact of incorporating diversity into organizations.  Dr. Bush will offer implementable strategies for communities, organizations, and individuals to integrate diversity and achieve optimal outcomes for the next generation of global innovators.

April 2, 2014

Enjoy a Spring Interlude on Apr. 3

Come to the Spring Interlude, a special concert event to be held on Thursday, April 3rd, 2014, at 12:00pm in Kresge Auditorium.  This event will feature performances by the Lavrova-Primakov Piano Duo, Cellist Adrian Daurov, and Pianist Amanda von Goetz.  The played music includes works by Scriabin, Brahms, Poulenc, Chopin, and Rachmaninoff.  Enjoy this cultural celebration where the gifts of international music and friendship combine, and the past meets the present at the home of the future, MIT.  Admission is free, but attendees are asked to register online.  For more information, visit the website. Sponsored by an ODGE Graduate Student Life Grant.

April 2, 2014

Simon devises new way to synthesize drugs quickly

Small protein fragments, also called peptides, are promising as drugs because they can be designed for very specific functions inside living cells. Insulin and the HIV drug Fuzeon are some of the earliest successful examples, and peptide drugs are expected to become a $25 billion market by 2018.

However, a major bottleneck has prevented peptide drugs from reaching their full potential: Manufacturing the peptides takes several weeks, making it difficult to obtain large quantities, and to rapidly test their effectiveness.

That bottleneck may soon disappear: A team of MIT chemists and chemical engineers has designed a way to manufacture peptides in mere hours. [...] The lead author of the paper is Mark Simon, a graduate student in Pentelute’s lab. Other authors include Klavs Jensen, head of MIT’s Department of Chemical Engineering, and Andrea Adamo, a research associate in chemical engineering.

Read more on MIT News.

April 2, 2014

Ebony Affair 2014 is on Apr. 5

Ebony Affair is an elegant and formal event that will include a cocktail hour, dinner, musical performance by the MIT Gospel Choir, keynote speaker Chris Jones (SM ’01, SM ’02), and an open dance floor.  The event will take place on Saturday, April 5th, 2014, at 6:00pm in Morss Hall, Walker Memorial.  This year’s theme, “Essence of Excellence,” allows reflection on the contributions and achievements of the community throughout the years as well as the recognition of the people who pave the way for future success and innovation.  All members of the MIT community are both welcome and encouraged to attend.  Reserve your ticket online.  Ticket prices are $15 for MIT students in advance, $20 at the door for all students, $35 for MIT faculty and staff, BAMIT members, and MIT alumni, and $45 for non-MIT guests.  If you’d like to pay in cash, there will be a booth in Lobby 10 during the week of March 31st through April 4th, from 10:00am to 5:00pm.  Formal attire is required.  Contact ea_2014committee@mit.edu with any questions.

April 2, 2014

Submit an article for “The Graduate” by Apr. 11

Submit an article for next issue of “The Graduate” and earn $100! Article submissions are sought from students for the upcoming “Health & Wellness” issue of The Graduate. Give your best advice and personal stories about maintaining your physical and mental health in the midst of the stresses of academic life. Profile articles on graduate student groups are also accepted. If your article is selected for publication, you will receive a $100 Amazon.com Giftcard! The submission deadline is Friday, April 11th, 5pm. Send article submissions to gsn-editor@mit.edu.

April 1, 2014

Coping with a career crisis

Back in graduate school, I remember thinking that successful academics seemed to lead consistently pleasant if somewhat uneventful lives. Now, by some measures, I’m one of those successful academics. After receiving a Ph.D. from Stanford, I spent 30 years as a professor at Yale and eight years as a dean, provost, and president at three different institutions. I have my share of honorary doctorates and memberships in prestigious national academies. That’s the good news.

The bad news is that over the course of 39 (gulp) years in academe, I have experienced countless career challenges and three serious crises. This essay is about how to cope with such crises, whatever your level of success. Continue reading at The Chronicle of Higher Education…

April 1, 2014

Transportation Camp New England on Apr. 5

Join the MIT Transportation Club and transport professionals from around New England for Transportation Camp New England.  This event will take place on Saturday, April 5th, 2014 from 9:00am to 5:00pm in the Stata Center (Opening Session in 32-123).  This is not a traditional conference, it’s an unconference!  The organizers don’t plan sessions ahead of time. Instead, you plan and lead the sessions!  Registration is required to attend ($10 for students).  Visit the website for details and registration information.