MIT Club of Washington DC

The Club of Washington DC is a dynamic, volunteer driven organization serving more than 8,000 area alumni/ae, students, parents, and friends. We welcome your participation by becoming a Club member,  coming to events, or volunteering. In the year ending June 30, 2014, we organized and/or participated in over 100 events.

September 2014 Newsletter

Event Highlights

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Christopher Monroe '87 -- Quantum Technology: Putting Weirdness to Use
Christopher Monroe '87 of the Joint Quantum Institute and the University of Maryland, is an experimental atomic physicist who specializes in the isolation of individual atoms for studies in quantum physics and applications in quantum information science.  His talk on the new field of quantum information science links information theory with quantum mechanics to exploit the bizarre features of the latter--uncertainty, entanglement, and measurement--to perform tasks that are impossible using conventional means. Lecture at UDC. $5 pp members/guests; $10 pp non-members. Registration ended September 11. *** NOTE: There are no seats left for either the lecture or the optional, self-pay, pre-lecture dinner. ***

Monday, September 29, 2014

Christopher Codella -- IBM Watson
Christopher F. Codella, Ph.D.Computer systems that can directly and accurately answer peoples’ questions over a broad domain of human knowledge have been envisioned by scientists and writers since the advent of computers themselves. Open domain question answering holds tremendous promise for facilitating informed decision making over vast volumes of natural language content. The Watson project is aimed at exploring how advancing and integrating Natural Language Processing (NLP), Information Retrieval (IR), Machine Learning (ML), massively parallel computation, and Knowledge Representation and Reasoning (KR&R) can greatly advance open-domain automatic question answering. An exciting proof-point in this challenge was to develop a computer system that could successfully compete against top human players at the Jeopardy! quiz show. Dr. Codella will introduce the audience to the Watson, the Jeopardy! challenge, how the his team tackled it using Watson, and where Watson is headed next. Dinner meeting at Maggiano's DC. $46 pp members/guests; $53 pp non-members. Register by September 23.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Nergis Mavalvala '97 -- The Warped Side of the Universe
Some of the most violent events in the universe are accompanied by spectacular warpages of space-time that travel to us in the form of gravitational waves. Dr. Nergis Mavalvala, Curtis and Kathleen Marble Professor of Astrophysics at MIT,  will describe how we search for these space-time ripples with the goal of observing the Universe with a new sense entirely. Then, surprisingly, she will link our quest to detect gravitational radiation to the bizarre world of quantum mechanics, thus connecting some of the largest scales of exploration to the some of the smallest. Join us on a journey from the far reaches of the Universe to the subatomic world. Dinner meeting at the Kenwood Club in Bethesda. $43 pp members/guests; $50 pp non-members. Register by September 25.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Ken Shapiro -- I Am a Vegetarian: Reflections on a Way of Being
A life-long animal protectionist and vegetarian, Ken Shapiro describes vegetarianism as more than a restrictive diet, a way of living that radically addresses and redresses these relationships. Joint with the Harvard Club. Dinner meeting at Hogan Lovells in DC. $35 pp members/guests; $65 pp non-members. Register by October 9.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Seminar Series — The Human Brain
Six Monthly Dinner Seminars: The Human Brain: Research, Progress, and Policy
The MIT Club of Washington is pleased to present its 33rd annual Seminar Series on an important national topic related to science, technology, and public policy.
DATE: October, 2014 through March, 2015
TIME: 6:15 p.m.—9:30 p.m.
LOCATION: Maggiano’s Little Italy Restaurant
ADDRESS: 5333 Wisconsin Avenue, NW, Washington, DC

Monday, November 17, 2014

Studio Theatre Backstage Tour
David Muse, Artistic Director of the Studio Theatre, will be our host for a one-hour backstage tour followed by a reception with heavy hors d'oeuvres, wine, and soft drinks. At this time, registration is open only to current Partners and Patrons, each of whom may also register one guest. No charge for Partners. $37 per person for Patrons and guests.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Matt Brinckman -- Reviving the American Chestnut Tree
Matt Brinckman is The American Chestnut Foundation's  Mid-Atlantic Regional Scientist. His presentation will cover the history, demise, and restoration efforts of the American Chestnut in the United States, including economic, ecological, cultural, and technical aspects of this iconic tree species. (For more information, listen to a 4-minute audio clip from Bonnie Ralston of Allegheny Mountain Radio on reviving the American Chestnut, with Matt Brinckman explaining his project.) Lecture at UDC. $5 pp members/guests; $10 pp non-members. Register by November 25.

  

Save the Date

The following events are not yet open for registration. When they are, they will move to the "Event Highlights" section above.

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Alan Guth
Professor Alan Guth is the Victor F. Weisskopf Professor of Physics and MacVicar Faculty Fellow at MIT. He will speak to us on a cosmology topic. Talk and reception at AAAS.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Daniel E. Hastings -- Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology
MIT has a substantial history of international activities related to research and education, and the expanding global connections of the 21st century are providing the Institute with increasing opportunities to engage in projects and collaborations outside of the U.S. MIT has been involved in Singapore since 1999 with the SMA-1 and SMA-2 programs. These programs laid the basis for the current involvement of the Singapore MIT Alliance in Research and Technology (SMART) and the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD). Singapore represents an existing MIT base in Asia. This is especially of value given that the leading economic indicators as well as R&D indicators show Asia as a place of increasing strength relative to the position of the US. Singapore has shown a willingness to think creatively in the long term about its research needs as well as the research needs to which it can contribute in the future. It has defined several large scale challenges that it faces as a city and which other cities will face. The talk will describe the MIT program in SMART, the large scale interdisciplinary intellectual challenges that are being addressed spanning human systems, energy systems, urban systems and environmental systems as well as the benefits to MIT and Singapore that both sides are seeing.

Professor Hastings is Director/CEO of the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) initiative, and the Cecil and Ida Green Education Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics and Engineering Systems at MIT. He spearheads SMART Centre’s vision to create the model for globalized research collaborations and shape multinational interdisciplinary research. Prior to this, he was MIT’s dean of undergraduate education from 2006 to 2013, supporting innovations in student learning--both in and outside the classroom--as well as promoting global educational opportunities and student diversity.  He earned a Ph.D. and an S.M, from MIT in Aeronautics and Astronautics in 1980 and 1978 respectively, after receiving his B.A. in Mathematics from Oxford University in 1976. He joined the MIT faculty as an assistant professor in 1985, advancing to associate professor in 1988 and full professor in 1993. Prof. Hastings served the Engineering Systems Division (ESD) as the Director of the Technology and Policy Program from 2000-2003, Associate Director of ESD from July 2001 - April, 2003, Co-Director from May, 2003 - June, 2004, and Director from July 2004 - December 2005.

Prof. Hastings served as Chief Scientist to the U.S. Air Force from 1997 to 1999. In that role, he served as chief scientific adviser to the Chief of Staff and the Secretary and provided assessments on a wide range of scientific and technical issues affecting the Air Force mission.

Dinner Meeting at Seasons 52, Tysons Corner.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Annual Career Workshop
For the 19th year the MIT Club, in conjunction the MIT Sloan School of Management, will present a career development workshop for all MIT alums. Sandwich buffet & workshop. Offices of Capgemini in DC. 

  

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