Focusing on just one event—even a groundbreaking that speaks to our strategic priorities—doesn’t do justice to the university’s pervasive momentum. Here are five highlights from recent weeks that capture the excitement on our campuses and beyond.
1. Six Huskies participated in the Sochi Winter Olympics, winning five medals. Kendall Coyne, AMD’17 (above), helped lead the U.S. women’s hockey team to silver, while Florence Schelling, DMSB’13, and Julia Marty, S’11, skated for the Swiss squad that claimed bronze. Steve Langton, DMSB’06, won bronzes in both the two-man and four-man bobsled events. This brings the total number of Northeastern athletes and coaches who have participated in the Olympics to 35, and the total number of medals won by Northeastern students and alumni to 16.
2. We broke ground on our Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex, a state-of-the-art, 200,000-square-foot research and education facility. This world-class complex will foster even more interdisciplinary research collaboration among Northeastern students and members of the faculty, such as Cabot Professor of Chemical Engineering Laura Lewis (above), that will lead to game-changing breakthroughs—and shape the world’s future.
3. When 90 percent of your college graduates are employed or in graduate school within nine months of earning their diplomas, you’re bound to create buzz on social media. Co-op is the latest trend on Twitter. Using the hashtag #iheartcoop, hundreds of Northeastern students have been tweeting about their achievements in experiential learning.
4. Blending research in speech communication and human and computer interfaces, associate professor Rupal Patel is helping give voice to the silent. During a talk for TEDWomen, she launched a crowd-sourced portal to record volunteers’ vocalizations and use them to create personalized, synthetic voices for the millions of Americans with severe speech impairments.
5. At a White House summit on higher education convened by President Obama, I announced new commitments to financial aid that will make the dream of a Northeastern education available to even more students. We’re extending the “Northeastern Promise”—a guarantee to all entering freshmen that:
• The amount of their university grants and scholarships will be maintained for eight semesters
• Their need-based grants from the university will increase at the same pace as tuition
• Their aid will be reevaluated if their family experiences a significant financial change
We’re also devoting more than $200 million in internal funds this year to provide grants to students.
These are just a few snapshots of this truly extraordinary time at Northeastern. There’s never been a more invigorating moment to be a Husky!
Joseph E. Aoun