February 2008

3rd — Matthew N. Faulkner ’08 wins Audience Favorite and Fullest Moustache at the MITstache competition, which challenged students to grow facial hair during IAP.

4th — On the day before Super Tuesday, MIT students crowd onto Silver Line buses to see Barack Obama speak outside the Seaport World Trade Center.

12th — Plans to convert Green Hall from a women’s graduate dormitory to the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority house are finalized. The change takes effect Fall 2008.

12th — The MIT Urban Studies and Planning program celebrates its 75th anniversary as a department by kicking off the its newest exhibit, “Changing Cities.”

22nd — The MIT Men’s and Women’s fencing teams win the New England Championship at Boston College. Igor Kopylov ’09 earns his third sabre title, a feat not accomplished since 1985.

26th — All-American wrestler Glenn J. Geesman ’09 pins five of his opponents at the New England College Conference Wrestling Association heavyweight championship, becoming the first in 13 years to claim the title of New England Champion.

29th — Timothy K. Lu G wins the $30,000 Lemelson-MIT Student Prize for Inventiveness for developing methods to kill antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

29th — Six candles representing binary digits shine atop MIT’s little dome to commemorate Random Hall’s 40th birthday.

March 2008

7th — Construction begins on Main Street for the new David H. Koch Institute of Integrative Cancer Research. The project is expected to finish by December 2010.

7th — Expanding on its financial aid program, MIT announces that students whose families earn less than $75,000 per year will not have to pay tuition.

11th — MIT’s “Beauty and the Geek” premieres on the CW Television Network for the fifth season. Christopher L. Follett G stars as “The Geek.”

14th — MIT reveals new online UROP proposal system which replaces the former paper submission process.

15th — MIT releases admissions decisions for the class of 2012. 1,554 students (11.6 percent) were admitted out of an applicant pool of 13,396.

15th — Considered by some to be the best diver to ever compete on the MIT swimming team, Doria M. Holbrook closes her career by earning her 8th All-American honor at the NCAA Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships.

17th — Stuart Schmill ’86, previously the interim director of admissions, is named MIT’s new Dean of Admissions.

19th — MIT faculty vote to make the sophomore exploratory option permanent. They also add a Pass/D/Fail option for graduate students.

21st — Bexley Hall withdraws from Dormcon after refusing to pay its annual $1,200 tax. Starting Fall 2008, Bexley will no longer have to pay taxes to Dormcon.

21st — Coming into the National Rifle Association Intercollegiate Championship as returning champions, MIT Pistol claims fourth place and earns seven All-America Awards.

27th — The MIT math team places third place in the Putnam Mathematical Competition. MIT students Qingchun Ren ’10 and Xuancheng Shao ’09 finish in the top six.

28th — MIT’s School of Engineering tops the national U.S. News & World Report’s yearly ranking of American graduate school programs.

31st — Collaboration between the MIT Media Lab and Bank of America results in a plan to construct the Center for Future Banking.

April 2008

2nd — The Graduate Student Council elects Oaz Nir to be president for the 2007-2008 academic year.

7th — MIT professor Junot Diaz wins the Pulitzer Prize for fiction for his novel “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao,” a story about a Dominican youth who copes with his emotional struggles with science-fiction books and action figures.

9th — U.S. Secretary of Energy, Samuel W. Bodman ScD ’65, gives a lecture at Bartos Theater entitled, “America’s Energy Security : Challenges We Face and How You Can Be Part of the Solution.”

9th — Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick delivers a speech at MIT concerning a new plan to inject $3.8 billion into the struggling economy.

10th — 1021 pre-frosh arrive on MIT Campus for a record-attendance-setting Campus Preview Weekend. More than 600 events are scheduled.

14th — Concourse Instructor Jim Bredt ’82 Wins APO’s “Big Screw” contest, receiving $699.29 in monetary votes.

14th — The Graduate Student Council launches a new off-campus website called “Rent Monkey.” The goal of the site is to show where all off-campus MIT students live on an interactive map.

16th — The Information Services and Technology plans to launch its new MITvoip service which will eventually replace current telephone services in MIT departments and labs.

17th — Pulitzer Prize-winning MIT Institute Professor John Harbison debuts his newest “Symphony No. 5” with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Symphony Hall.

22nd — MIT Earth Week 2008 begins with a public address made by Governor Deval Patrick in Kresge.

24th — Another piano drops from the roof of Baker Hall, marking Drop Date.

25th — Results are in: Noah S. Jessop ’09 and Michael A. Bennie ’10 win Undergraduate Association elections for president and vice president.

26th — MIT Sport Taekwondo Club wins the National Collegiate Taekwondo Association Championships at Stanford University.

29th — The MIT Men’s Track and Field Team captures seven individual victories and its eighth consecutive New England Women’s and Men’s Conference Championship.

May 2008

11th — MIT Cycling Team wins the Division II National Championship in Colorado.

13th — Two-thirds of the 1,554 students admitted to the Class of 2012 accept admission to MIT, the third highest percentage in the Institute’s history.

20th — One Laptop Per Child unveils its second-generation XO laptop. The new design is smaller and cheaper than the previous model and opens like a book to reveal dual touch-sensitive displays.

28th — Previously Dean for Graduate Education, Steven R. Lerman ’72 is appointed as MIT’s new vice chancellor.

28th — Coeditor of Counterpoint Kristina Costa announces that the monthly publication that chronicles Wellesley and MIT campus life will cease to be distributed on the MIT campus.

June 2008

2nd — Star A. Simpson ’10 is sentenced to one year of supervised pretrial probation as a result of her arrest at Logan International when personnel mistook a circuit board on her sweatshirt for a bomb.

6th — Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus delivers the opening address at the 142nd Commencement. 2,335 undergraduate and graduate students receive degrees.

6th — MIT buys four life science buildings in Cambridge for a reported $90.5 million. The space combined sums to 150,000 square feet.

6th — MIT’s new biological engineering program (Course 20) graduates its first class, giving degrees to 23 students.

11th — MIT Institute professor Robert S. Langer ScD ’74 wins the Millennium Technology Prize for his research involving advanced treatments of cancer, heart disease, and other illnesses.

13th — The Task Force on Student Engagement is established to promote student influence in administrative decisions.

July 2008

1st — SafeRide adopts the NextBus GPS Tracking System, allowing students to track shuttle routes and arrivals on

1st — Mary C. Boyce PhD ’87 becomes the first femalechair of the MIT Mechanical Engineering Department

1st — Associate Provost for Faculty Equity Barbara H. Liskov is named Institute Professor, the highest faculty rank at MIT.

9th — Renovations of lecture hall 10-250 begin on schedule.

18th — Court drops charges against student Michael P. Short for breaking and entering into the basement of NW16 on June 7.

20th — MIT admissions communications manager Ben Jones, popular among MIT students and prospectives on MIT Admission’s blog site, leaves to become vice president for communications at Oberlin College.

24th — Simmons announces a plan to implement “all you can eat” buffet dining, however, the proposal is canceled in August due to unresolved issues.

28th — Clara S. Bennett ’10 becomes the third MIT student-athlete to swim across the English Channel, a 21-mile swim.

29th — Pipe bursts in Alpha Tau Omega building, causing members of ATO to be housed in MacGregor House suite lounges.

August 2008

8th — MIT Transportation and Parking offers new commuting options including MBTA commuter rail subsidies and free transit passes for employees who park at MIT five days a week.

10th — Federal judge dissolves gag order against MIT Students Zackary Anderson ’09, Russell Ryan ’09, and Alessandro Chiesa ’09, who discovered security flaws in the MBTA’s CharlieTicket system.

15th — Building W1, known formerly as Ashdown House, closes in preparation for renovation.

18th — Former dean for student affairs at Columbia University’s Undergraduate School, Costantino “Chris” Colombo starts his new job as MIT’s new dean for student life.

22nd — Residence Exploration kicks off as freshman explore the campus and participate in dormitory events. For the first time, Next House and NW35 are included in the residential lottery.

24th — MIT’s Class of 2012 arrives on campus to start orientation activities. This year’s theme is “TechTube.”

26th — The U.S. News and World Report ranks MIT fourth along with Stanford University in the 2008 college ranking.

27th — The Graduate Student Council launches new Dental Plan for graduate students.

30th — Freshman get their first taste of Greek Life as fraternities and sororities host Greek Griller to kick off rush week.

September 2008

1st — Economics Professor Olivier J. Blanchard PhD ’77 starts his new position as chief economist of the International Monetary Fund.

3rd — The new academic year kicks off as students have their first day of classes.

4th — Eli and Edythe Broad donate $400 Million to the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard to promote the discovery of genetic links to major diseases.

8th — Community Picnic celebrates the opening of new Ashdown House.

10th — MIT students and faculty alike celebrate as the Large Hadron Collider successfully directs proton beams around the main ring for the first time.

10th — President Student Hockfield testifies before a House of Representative Committee on Energy to triple federal funding for energy research.

12th — The MIT Cycling team captures Division II National Collegiate Track Title in Colorado Springs.

15th — The J. B. Carr Indoor Tennis Center reopens after undergoing a $1 million improvement with better lighting, insulation, and an addition of a skylight.

18th — President of Rwanda Paul Kagame addresses the MIT community in Kresge with a talk about the “Imperative of Science and Technology in Accelerating African and Rwandan Development.”

18th — 5,000 students and 300 companies participate in MIT’s 2008 Career Fair at the Johnson Athletic Center.

23rd — MIT Faculty professors Marin Soljacic ’96 and John Ochsendorf win MacArthur ‘genius’ grants.

29th — At the State of the Institute Forum in Kresge, Susan Hockfield announces for the creation of the Environmental Research Council.

October 2008

2nd — Ig Nobels take place at Sanders Theater, Harvard University and features the research of spermicidal cola, archeological armadillos, lap dancers, and much more.

3rd — MIT’s newest sorority, Pi Beta Phi, recruits 41 women into their first MIT pledge class.

3rd — Hackers respond to Chancellor Clay’s campus-wide e-mail concerning hacking by veiling the Stata Center Hacking Exhibits under black cloth with large VIOLATION NOTICE signs.

3rd — The Campaign For Students launches publicly to help raise $500 million by 2011.

6th — The MIT Energy Club hosts an energy debate between Obama and McCain campaigns in Kresge Auditorium.

9th — Vibin A. Kundukulam ’11 appears on Jeopardy! and takes home a second place prize of $2,000.

10th — The MIT Symphony Orchestra begins its new season with Dvorak’s Carnival Overture in Kresge Auditorium.

13th — Former MIT Professor Paul R. Krugman PhD ’77 wins the Nobel prize for economics.

17th — Campaign For Students protests in Lobby 7 due to dissatisfaction with the current student influence on administrative decisions.

18th — Crew teams from universities around the nation compete in the 44th Head of the Charles.

21st — The $90 million project to renovate W1 into an undergraduate dormitory is postponed due to inadequate funding.

25th — Crowd gathers at Steinbrenner Stadium to celebrate the dedication of Roberts Field.

27th — Hundreds of hand-crafted glass pumpkins are sold on Kresge Lawn in the annual glass-workshop sale.

29th — The new Clover Food Truck, owned by Ayr Muir ’00, starts to serve vegetarian fare behind MIT Medical.

29th — David J. Hutchings ’10 and O. Russell Rodewald ’10 are elected president and vice president of the Interfraternity Council.

31st — Building 66 suffers a violent steam pipe explosion. Damages are expected to cost seven figures.

31st — IS&T improves networks services at Burton-Conner, MacGregor House, and Green Hall by removing analog phones and replacing them with the latest technologies.

November 2008

3rd — President Susan Joan Hockfield meets with the MIT Undergraduate Association, promising more student input in administrative decision-making.

3rd — Professor Ann M. Graybiel PhD ’71 of the Brain and Cognitive Sciences Department becomes MIT’s newest Institute Professor.

4th — MIT students watch on as Barack Obama defeats John McCain and is declared president elect.

4th — MIT Cable adds two stations to its channel offerings: TVJapan (16) and the Big Ten Network (20).

6th — Aafia Siddiqui ’95, MIT alumna arrested in Afghanistan in July for allegedly carrying a bomb, is declared “not competent” to stand trial when she is diagnosed with chronic depressive type psychosis.

15th — Stata Center undergoes $3 million project to improve current snow-melting system.

17th — In a letter released to the MIT community, President Susan Hockfield and the provost announce that MIT will undergo a 5 percent spending cut in the fiscal year effective next July.

17th — The Association of Student Activities de-recognizes 60 dormant groups in an effort to revise group recognition.

17th — Professor Henry Jenkins, who served nearly 20 years as codirector and cofounder of MIT’s Comparative Media Studies program, announces that he will leave for a position at the University of Southern California.

18th — Former U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexis M. Herman gives keynote address at MIT’s Diversity Leadership Congress.

18th — Students from Conner 2, Burton 4, and Burton 5 inflate a moonbounce structure in the middle of Lobby 7 at midnight.

18th — The Media Lab announces the creation of the Center for Future Storytelling, a seven year $25 million collaboration with Plymouth Rock Studios.

21st — A BMF microwave on the third floor of Random Hall wins APO’s Uncleanliest Manifestation on Campus award, raising $833 for charity winner Doctors Without Borders.

22nd — Alia Whitney-Johnson ’08 and Matthew L. Gethers ’09 become MIT’s latest Rhodes Scholars.

24th — President-elect appoints Lawrence H. Summers ’75 to lead the National Economic Council.

December 2008

2nd — MIT holds a candlelight vigil to honor those killed and wounded in the Mumbai terrorist attacks.

8th — In response to rumors of an automatic meal charge for undergraduates, the UA Senate passes a bill requiring more transparency in the Blue Ribbon Committee.

11th — MIT releases follow-up letter concerning new budget policies including the reduction of the General Institute Budget expenses by $100-$150 million within 2-3 years.

17th — MIT enters the $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE competition which challenges students and faculty to send the first privately-funded robot to the moon.

17th — The Committee on the Undergraduate Program fails to vote on the proposed GIR and HASS-D changes. The vote is delayed until the next faculty meeting in February.

19th — Picower Foundation, which funded MIT’s Picower Institute for Learning and Memory, falls victim to the Bernard Madoff fraud.

19th — President-elect Barack Obama appoints MIT professor Eric Lander to cochair the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.

January 2009

3th — Application deadline for regular admissions closes, after a brief extension. MIT accepted 540 students early in the largest-recorded early-applicant pool of 5,019.

16th — MIT’s annual Mystery Hunt kicks off in Lobby 7 as the first puzzles are given out. After 63 hours of non-stop problem-solving, team Beginner’s Luck wins the hunt when members find the coin under Building 13.

20th — The MIT community watches as Barack Obama takes the presidential oath at his inauguration. People stuff into 10-250, 32-123, and other lecture halls to watch Obama’s inaugural speech.

24th — As a result of an anonymous donation, MIT students enjoy a new shuttle service to and from Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods Market.

—­Compiled by Robert McQueen