MIT celebrates Class of 2020’s virtual commencement
Reif said that an in-person commencement will be held at MIT at “some safe point in the future.” He also said that digital diplomas have been delivered to students who requested them through the Blockcerts Wallet app.
MIT team wins International Theoretical Physics Olympiad
The ITPO’s website writes that the problems are written by PhD students and postdocs. The exams allow students to “play with non-trivial questions and to learn through competition,” the website writes.
Media Lab Open Agriculture Initiative closed amid allegations of scientific misrepresentation and environmental harm
The New York Times reported in October that Zuber “halted OpenAg activities, pending completion of ongoing assessments.” The Initiative was already mostly closed prior to its complete termination in April.
UA Judicial Review Board to finalize bylaws after Spring 2020 election ruling
A complaint filed May 15 on behalf of the UA Council by UA President Danielle Geathers ’22, forwarded to The Tech, prompted the decision. The complaint called JudBoard to cease all activity and finalize its previously incomplete bylaws by May 29.
Commencement, summer registration, emergency summer housing
Virtual commencement will take place noon EDT May 29.
Graduate students to start returning to campus
Graduate students who are eligible to register for summer or fall 2020 and remain in housing beyond July 31 due to renewed housing licenses or on-campus housing assignment for the upcoming academic year may return to campus.
Ad Hoc Faculty Committee on Guidelines for Outside Engagements holds forum
Core values for outside engagements include transparency; being worthy of a good reputation; honesty and integrity; respect for community members and human rights; “promoting diversity, inclusion and equity”; “pursuing and advancing knowledge with scientific integrity”; and “educat[ing] and foster[ing] the advancement” of all community members.
IS&T makes Microsoft Teams available for MIT community
IS&T is making Microsoft Teams available to “help mitigate the impacts of COVID-19 and best support MIT community members as they engage in activities remotely.”
MIT Quality of Life Survey preliminary results released
71% of student respondents described their overall physical health as “excellent” or “good,” compared to 55% who described their mental health as such. When asked how many days in the past week they got enough sleep to feel rested, 20% of student and 32% of faculty and staff respondents indicated fewer than three days.
Departments discuss fall teaching scenarios
If only a portion of the student body is on campus, departments could offer “different classes for remote and in-person students with more emphasis on individual coaching and guest speakers for remote students.” Remote and in-person students could also be subject to different grading policies.
Preliminary results of COVID-related student surveys released
Only 26% of on-campus and 24% of off-campus undergraduate respondents “agree strongly” that they “feel like part of the community at MIT,” compared to 41% of respondents in the 2019 Undergraduate Enrolled Student Survey.
Two ‘mini’ town halls held with students to discuss fall scenarios
MIT Medical is “bumping up” its staff to be able to conduct contact tracing — which Stuopis called “the most critical public health offering that we have.”
Flexible P/NR policy approved in faculty meeting
The policy allows incoming undergraduates to retroactively designate up to 48 units as P/NR after the first semester and was first proposed by the Committee on the Undergraduate Program (CUP) in the March faculty meeting.
MIT creates working group in response to new Title IX regulations
Schools are required to update their existing procedures to comply with the new regulations by Aug. 14. Whittle and Dahleh wrote that this “short timeframe” and the “timing of the regulations’ release” amid the COVID-19 pandemic are “regrettable.”
Jason Ku reflects on his time as MIT student, researcher, and lecturer
Ku: As for the transition to Course 6, when I got to grad school, I noticed that for every problem I wanted to tackle, I needed to be able to process a lot of data or be able to run a simulation. It’s not that the interesting things involved computer science, but I had to be able to use a computer to do my work.
Reif leads second town hall to discuss plans for continuity and reopening campus
Topics covered included evolving knowledge about COVID-19, academic preparations for the fall, staffing, residential continuity, and reopening campus research.
Task Force 2021 charged to brainstorm ‘better’ post-COVID-19 MIT
Reif wrote in the task force opening charge that the task force will draw from “lessons” from the pandemic to help imagine MIT’s future. Some goals that Reif outlined for the Institute were to be safer and more efficient, sustainable, inclusive, equitable, affordable, and financially resilient.
Anti-Asian racism: the neglected strain of COVID-19
Why is American-ness something we have to prove? Will handing out masks wearing red, white, and blue truly erase any hostility? What about after the virus? All of this begs the question, what if the virus originated from a European country?
War criminals fit right in at MIT
At a university that invites trusted partners such as Lockheed Martin and Raytheon to Career Fair in order to direct students deeper into the U.S. war machine, it is perhaps fitting that MIT graduates will be sent off into the world with warm anecdotes and hardy life lessons from SEAL training.
A call for clearer communication regarding COVID-19
The anxiety we already experience as a result of the pandemic and an inability to make research headway needn’t be compounded by opaque communications from your office.
Not your traditional love story
Yes, there’s Asian and LGBTQ representation(!), and in a way that feels organic, showing refreshing, imperfect experiences of love.
On being the letter ‘Q’
Let’s call this week “the week of self-improvement.”
Welcome to the table
YouTube showed me the answer I had been looking for all these years. I finally felt like I had found the words to describe who I really was.
Fighting coronavirus through research
As one of the few labs authorized to conduct research on biosafety level three (BSL-3) viruses, the Gehrke Lab is studying pathologies of SARS-CoV-2 at the Ragon Institute.