Holiday gifts that encourage STEM education — Elaine Chen

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Elaine Chen

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Elaine Chen

From Fortune

The gender imbalance in STEM fields is extreme. According to a 2010 AAUW report, boys and girls take math and science courses in roughly equal numbers in elementary, middle, and high school, however far fewer women than men pursue these fields in college. According to the National Science Foundation, 29% of all male freshmen planned to major in a STEM field in 2006 compared to 15% of all female freshmen.

Further, while 57% of undergraduate degrees are earned by women, only 12% of computer science degrees are earned by women. By college graduation, men outnumber women in nearly every science and engineering field.

This divide grows worse at the graduate level and is even wider in the workplace. GirlsWhoCode.com states that women make up half the U.S. workforce, yet hold only 25% of the jobs in the technical or computing fields. To quote from the site: “In a room full of 25 engineers, only three will be women.”

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MIT’s first Music Hack Day–Where entrepreneurship, computer engineering, and music combine — Philip Cohen, MBA ’13

MIT is known for its excellence in computer engineering. It also has an outstanding, but lesser-known, music and arts program. On Veterans Day weekend, computer engineering and music will connect on the MIT campus, and the result could be important innovations in the way music is produced and enjoyed. Read More »

Luis Perez-Breva: Prototyping Technology Innovations — Tinkering, reasoning, and experimenting: Innovation is a process.

MIT Lecturer Luis Perez Breva

Some people think that the first step of innovation is asking for $10 million. We have grown accustomed to the idea that landing that kind of money from a granting agency or a venture fund is a prerequisite to execute on an idea for a new technology or market —or for that matter, even come up with a good idea in the first place.

No wonder we see gaps. Read More »

Jackie Wilbur on the Master of Finance Program: Confronting Global Challenges

In the last few months, the Occupy Wall Street movement has brought a lot of attention to the finance industry. However, MIT’s Sloan School of Management has been focused on this area for over 40 years. Our finance faculty have been conducting cutting-edge research, and rigorously teaching our students, ensuring that our finance students are prepared—both in theory and practice—to take on the types of leadership roles required in this area, particularly in light of the recent economic crisis.

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Matthew Marx: Non-compete agreements and their impact on employees

MIT Sloan Asst. Prof. Matt Marx

For businesses that use them, non-compete agreements, which typically bar their employees from joining rival companies for one to two years, offer a clear benefit:  They prevent employees from going to a rival with the knowledge and skills they have acquired on the job. But these agreements also carry a high cost for the employees, many of whom did not realize they would be bound by them until after they accepted the job offer. According to my new study of more than 1,000 engineers, about one-third of workers who have signed non-compete agreements end up leaving their chosen industry altogether when they change jobs, often at significant financial cost.

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