R/O Week News in ReviewThe Tech focused on the events and activities of Residence and Orientation Week from Aug. 26 to Sept. 3. Several stories, however, dealth with issues of importance to the community at large. Those stories are reprinted here, in abbreviated form, for the benefit of community members who returned after R/O Week.
Cable Service Coming to Dorms
Students living on campus can expect MIT Cable to offer expanded service by the second week of classes, incorporating channels from Continental Cablevision, including the Cable News Network and Music Television.
Anthony Price, marketing manager for Continental Cablevision, plans to officially announce the new services during the week of Sept. 6, and have Continental sales representatives on campus between Sept. 13 and 24 to take orders.
Various packages will be available to students, in addition to the current MIT Cable programming. The basic package, available to students for approximately $10 per month, will include news, education, and variety packages in addition to community programming and educational, municipal, and community access channels.
The news package is set to include CNN, CNN Headline News, C-SPAN 1, and C-SPAN 2, while the education package is comprised of the Arts and Entertainment Network and the Discovery Channel. MTV, ESPN, Nickelodeon, Turner Network Television, the TBS SuperStation, and the USA Network will make up the variety package.
In addition to the cable networks available, Boston's network affiliates (WGB* Channel 2, WBZ Channel 4, WCVB Channel 5, and WHD* Channel 7) and independent stations (WFXT Channel 25, WSBK Channel 38, WGBX Channel 44, and WQTV Channel 68) will be provided under the basic package.
Students will also have the option of adding premium channels, like Home Box Office, Showtime, the SportsChannel, Cinemax, the Movie Channel, and the New England Sports Network at an additional monthly fee. According to Price, Continental plans to offer packages including multiple premium channels at discounted rates.
Price said that Cablevision currently serves almost 50 percent of the homes in the Cambridge area and expects that approximately the same proportion of on campus residence will eventually be receiving cable services.
Students ordering the expanded service will be provided with a converter to receive and de-scramble the additional signals. However, service will be limited to on campus housing as Continental only serves the Cambridge area.
While Price said it will be possible for lounges and other public areas to receive the additional services at an increased rate, he indicated that not all premium stations would be available in such a forum because of contractual agreements between Continental and the networks.
Winchester said that he would have to look into which premium services will be available for such a public location and how this will affect service to some on campus fraternities, which solely have wiring to public locations.
Urban Is New Sloan Dean
Professor Glen L. Urban became the new Dean of the School of Management Wednesday. He succeeded Lester C. Thurow, who had lead the Sloan School since July 1987.
Urban, who served as deputy dean at Sloan from 1987 to 1991, has been a member of the MIT faculty for 27 years.
One of Thurow's focuses was making people aware the Sloan School existed, Urban said, but he wants to promote what the Sloan School has to offer and "make Sloan school a preeminent management school of these times."
Urban added that he hopes Thurow will continue to work in the school, and thinks they will remain a good team.
President Charles M. Vest said of Urban, "His research and teaching have been in a traditional management field, but he has brought innovative uses of modern information technology to it."
"Dean Thurow has positioned us well for the transition to the 21st century in creating new international programs, encouraging the development of Leaders for Manufacturing Program, securing resources to provide new facilities in the new Jack C. Tang Center for Management Education, and building faculty numbers and faculty diversity," Wrighton said.
"I anticipate a smooth evolution of the School," Vest added. "MIT has a comparative advantage over other business schools because of our understanding of the applications of technology to management, and the management of technology."
"Other major business schools are struggling to try to achieve ties with engineering that are already strong here," Vest continued. "Coupling this with our strength in other management areas, our international activities, and the strategic directions that the school has set, we are on our way to being the premier management school for the new century."
Trained in both mechanical engineering and marketing, Urban understands the importance of the intersection of science and engineering with management. This convergence will be of particular significance to MIT as the Institute deals with an income moving away from federal funding and towards corporations. "A lot of challenges ... are going to be management challenges," Urban said.
"Ten or 15 years ago, [engineering and management] could be more independent," Urban said, but engineers will have to know more about management to be increasingly productive in the future.
Protesters Picket Outside Fraternity
A group of slightly more than 20 students gathered outside Phi Beta Epsilon yesterday to protest the fraternity's response to an incident last spring, when racial epithets where shouted at four blacks students.
"We're not trying to punish PBE for those comments shouted on March 13," explained Tommie A. Henderson `95, a spokesman for the protesters. "We feel that they were being unresponsive to the community, and it is for this reason that we protest them."
There was no noticeable tension between the protesters and the residents of PBE. "We're not incredibly thrilled about it, but it is an important thing to consider on this campus. PBE fully respects their right to protest and we also support the cause of raising racial awareness," said Michael K. Daly `94, president of PBE.
The primarily black protesters were joined by students from a number of other campus groups. The protest was organized by the Black Students' Union.
Though the protest began shortly before the Inter-Fraternity Council rush, Henderson said that the timing was largely coincidental. "PBE, as well as a lot of other fraternities, believe that this is malicious because this was during rush. That was not our motive," he said.
The protesters emphasized that their primary concerns were educating the freshmen and promoting communication. They were also disappointed by the results of official efforts to promote communication.
Arthur C. Smith, dean for undergraduate education and student affairs, was hopeful that the protest will help improve the quality of race relations on campus. "I think there's a lot of hope that some positive activities will come out of this," he said.
PBE is also eager to put the incident itself in the past and concentrate on improving future relations, Daly said. "We need to get beyond the incident itself and get this campus moving in the right direction," he said.
PBE and the protesters bring to the issue two opposing views. "You have two groups who have two basic starting points not just on racism, but on all sorts of issues," Smith said. "The goal isn't really to get them to agree but to get them to understand each other."
Widnall Sworn In As Air Force Head
Professor Sheila E. Widnall '60 was officially sworn into office as Secretary of the Air Force by President Clinton Aug. 6, according to Captain Kathleen Cook, an Air Force spokeswoman. Widnall is the first woman ever to head one of the military branches.
At MIT, Widnall is professor of aeronautics and astronautics and served as associate provost. She has been on the MIT faculty for 28 years.
Clinton announced his intention to nominate Widnall July 2. The full Senate confirmation took place Aug. 5 -- one day before closing session. The Senate Armed Services Committee approved had her nomination earlier that week.
Although Widnall has never served in the Air Force, she has been an adviser on various military boards. Widnall was also the fifth woman president of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences. As president and chairman of AAAS, she testified on numerous occasions to Congressional committees dealing with issues of research, science education, and research faculty funding.
At MIT Widnall has also been a strong force in these issues. As associate provost since January 1992, she has dealt with the issues of MIT's policies and procedures for promotion and tenure policies, a study on mandatory faculty retirement, MIT's international relationships, and the Council on Federal Relations.
Widnall also had a strong interest in academic integrity at MIT, both with students and researchers. She was a chairwoman of the Committee on Discipline and supported the idea of having an honor code for students. She was also the first woman to chair the faculty.
As an engineer, Widnall also holds many distinctions. She was the first alumna appointed to the faculty in the School of Engineering, and received the 1986 Abby Rockefeller Mauz Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics Award.
In addition, Widnall is internationally known for her expertise in fluid dynamics, specifically in the areas of aircraft turbulence and vortices created by helicopters. She also holds two patents, one of which is an aerodynamic device for either water or air craft.
Adam Kreiger '95
Adam M. Kreiger '95 died Aug. 10, after a four-year battle with bone cancer.
But his friends and family said, "Don't mourn the loss of Adam; mourn the loss of those who weren't touched by Adam."
"He's one of those people whom [everyone likes]. He'll definitely be missed," said Nathan A. Watson `95, Adam's roommate at Delta Kappa Epsilon for two years.
"He really wanted to be remembered [as] healthy ... because he felt that although he had a disease he wasn't a different person because of it," his mother, Shelley Kreiger, said. He had a great sense of humor, and "even when he was very sick he was fun to be with."
Adam Kreiger is survived by his parents, Michael and Shelley, and three sisters, Rachel, Sarah, and Deborah.
There will be a memorial service for Adam Kreiger at MIT this semester.
Adam Kreiger was diagnosed with cancer as a high school junior. He had been very athletic -- a star wrestler and cross country runner, according to Watson. He had one tumor on his leg removed, said Robert M. Randolph, associate dean for student services. But he vowed that he would be able to walk normally by the time he graduated from high school -- and he did.
Kreiger entered MIT as a premedical student in the School of Management. He had multiple recurrences of the cancer during his sophomore year. Even with radiation treatments, chemotherapy, biological treatments, and other treatments, the tumors grew out of control, Shelley Kreiger said.
"He made it seem like he could recover from anything," Watson said. But by June, "He decided that medical treatment wasn't going to do anything any more, just let it take control."
Also, the Kreiger family has set up an Adam Kreiger fund for cancer screening and education.
Student Hospitalized After Three-Story Fall
A student descending from the roof of Baker House on a rope was injured on Aug. 31 when he lost his grip and fell three stories.
According Campus Police Chief Anne P. Glavin, Michael J. Duff '95 had attached a 75-foot rope to a vent on the roof and apparently tried to scale the side of the building facing Memorial Drive.
"He was repelling off of our roof. He wasn't doing it with repelling gear, but with two normal, hardware-store ropes," said Nicole Fang `95, a Baker deskworker and friend of Duff.
A Baker resident heard Duff fall and called the campus police at 11:22 p.m. Two officers responded within a minute and paramedics took Duff to the hospital. Duff was conscious after the fall but could not feel his legs, Fang said.
Duff was taken to Beth Israel Hospital, where he entered surgery at 3:30 a.m. Duff shattered a vertebra in his neck and was in surgery for 14-and-a-half hours, according to Robert M. Randolph, associate dean for student assistance services.
Because of the spectacle created by the fall, rumors that Duff tried to commit suicide were started, Fang said. The rumors are completely false, according to Randolph.
Card Key System To Start Soon
Beginning on Sept. 29, residents of Next House and MacGregor House will unlock their dormitories with magnetically encoded "card keys."
The change is part of a security enhancement project which will eventually include card key readers in all dormitories. By the spring term, all dormitories will probably be equipped with readers, said Associate Director of Housing and Food Services Kenneth R. Wisentaner.
Next House presently has one card reader, while MacGregor has eight, one for each perimeter door. The subcontractor is now installing the system in New House, and they are "working their way down Amherst Alley," Wisentaner said.
All students will be issued a temporary card key on Registration Day to access these systems. The Housing Office is working toward having the access card be the same as the student identification card. This would require all students to be issued new identification cards, but probably will not occur for some time. "The goal for MIT is to have one card for everybody on campus," Wisentaner said.
MIT is also installing the card system for access into the Westgate parking lot. The access system, paired with complete perimeter fencing and lighting improvements, is being installed "to control access and thereby reduce the incidence of motor vehicle theft," said Chief of Campus Police Anne P. Glavin. This is an experiment that may bring card-key systems to other parking lots and buildings, Glavin said. "It is my hope to see this implemented across campus," she added.
Institute-wide Homecoming To be Held
MIT will hold its first formal homecoming on the weekend of Oct. 23. A series of events, athletic and otherwise, will take place to celebrate the theme: "Mind and Muscle . . . MIT Salutes Scholar Athletes."
During half-time of the traditional homecoming football game, former recipients of the GTE Academic All-American award or an NCAA post-graduate scholarship are honored. Collectively, MIT has received more awards than any other school, according to Theresa Joyce, project manager of alumni/ae activities. Fifty-nine men and women have been invited to return, and to date sixteen have committed themselves to the affair, Joyce said. Athletes will arrive from all over the country, and one is returning from as far away as Cyprus.
"We're thrilled that the Institute is using this theme," said Roger Crosley, director of sports information. "The fact that MIT is honoring these people says a lot about its commitment to the athletic department."
The weekend's busy athletic schedule actually begins on Friday afternoon, when the women's soccer team faces Clark University, here at MIT. At MIT on Saturday, the rifle squad takes aim against Virginia Military Institute, the men's soccer team takes its turn against Clark, and women's field hockey meets Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Men's cross-country runners will trek to Franklin Park, in Dorchester, for the Constitution Athletic Conference Championships. Also, the MIT crew teams will participate in the Head of the Charles Regatta, a coincidental occurrence the homecoming organizers were unaware of until just recently.
The football game will begin at 1:00 p.m. Saturday afternoon, with Nichols College opposing the Engineers.
A reception will be held for the honorees after the game and will be open to the entire MIT community. It is currently scheduled to take place in Rockwell Cage, though Joyce feels the location may have to be changed to avoid excessive noise from other athletic facilities.
In addition to the plethora of sporting activities, there will be a carnival Saturday in the parking lot of Johnson Athletic Center which will last until half-time of the football game. Any MIT organization may set up a booth to play a game or offer information. Also, just prior to the football game, Phi Gamma Delta will be barbecuing in the pits by the Athletic Center. People may purchase meals there or bring their own picnic lunches.
To "salute the mind," the Student Center Committee has arranged a virtual reality demonstration in the lobby of Kresge Auditorium, to take place on Saturday and Sunday. This will also be the feature presentation of Saturday's carnival.
Whether or not this is the Institute's first homecoming is actually a matter of debate, according to Crosley. There has been an annual homecoming game since the inception of the football team in 1978. This year, however, marks the first time campus organizations other than the athletic department will get involved.
The idea for a large-scale event originated in the Alumni Office. Drawing on her experiences at Northeastern University and other universities, Joyce began planning a homecoming that would incorporate various aspects of MIT life. She emphasized that this is "not just for alumni. It will only work if the whole community participates." All living groups are encouraged to organize reunion events for their alumni, and to contact the Alumni Office for assistance, if necessary.
Movie Filmed In Killian Court
The excitement of Hollywood swept MIT off of its feet on Aug. 30 when MGM Studios began filming its new movie, Blown Away, in Killian Court. Filming will continue in the Boston area until Oct. 1, with the film's release slated for next summer.
The Killian Court footage will be one of the movie's opening scenes, introducing the character played by Jeff Bridges. Bridges plays Jimmy Dove, a member of the Boston Explosives Ordinance Unit. The bomb squad is called to MIT when an employee receives a notice that a bomb will detonate if she stops typing on her computer. Bridges rushes in and defuses the bomb -- all in less than one minute of actual movie time.
News Office Associate Director Robert C. DiIorio emphasized that the plot does not directly involve MIT or Commencement, but the "threat is directed at an individual who happened to work at MIT."
Five thousand chairs and several hundred extras were on hand, including about 30 MIT staff members and students, according to Gayle M. Fitzgerald, manager of conference services. The extras played MIT students and their parents, interrupted during Commencement exercises. The extras also included real campus police, Boston police, firemen, and bomb squad members.
Tommy Lee Jones, who plays Dove's nemesis, will join the filming in September, Fitzgerald added.