MIT will name its historic Building E52 in honor of Morris Chang '52, SM '53, ME '55 and Sophie Chang, who have made a generous gift to restore and renovate the building. Building E52 is the original home of the MIT Sloan School of Management and headquarters of the MIT Department of Economics.
An Art Deco treasure located on Memorial Drive along the Charles River, E52 was built in 1938 for the Lever Brothers Company (later part of Unilever) and became part of MIT's campus in the early 1950s. The distinctive edifice was designed by Donald Des Granges, a 1914 graduate of MIT, with consulting architects Shreve, Lamb and Harmon, the visionaries behind the Empire State Building. Extensive renovations have restored the building's grand façade on Memorial Drive, reconfigured the interior to maximize space and encourage collaboration, and significantly improved the building’s operating efficiency.
The new E52 will provide a fitting headquarters for MIT's preeminent Department of Economics, and centralize and streamline the MIT Sloan's student and administrative services. In addition, by building a seventh floor, the project has doubled the size of the original MIT Faculty Club and created a much-needed conference center for the entire MIT community.
"MIT was the most important part of my formal education and had a profound impact on my life," said Morris Chang. "I have also long been an amateur economics student and an admirer of MIT’s economics department. My wife and I are proud to have our names associated with the Department of Economics and MIT Sloan."
“The Chang name is synonymous with innovation,” said MIT President L. Rafael Reif. “The new Morris and Sophie Chang Building will serve as an inspiration to our community and a reminder that brilliant technology can change the world. I can imagine no more fitting tribute to Morris and Sophie’s generosity, sense of service, and enduring contributions to the life of our campus.”
Morris Chang is the founding chairman of the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC). The company pioneered the dedicated silicon foundry business model. Dr. Chang is a well-known leader of the international semiconductor industry. Prior to the founding of TSMC, he studied and worked in the U.S. for 36 years, 25 of which were at Texas Instruments, where he rose to be the executive in charge of its worldwide semiconductor business. He earned bachelor's and master's degrees from MIT, both in mechanical engineering, and a PhD in electrical engineering from Stanford University.
Mrs. Chang is an artist and the director of the TSMC Foundation's Volunteer Society. She leads employee volunteers in a variety of educational, cultural, and emergency initiatives that serve society.
The Changs are active members of the MIT community. A life member emeritus of the MIT Corporation, Dr. Chang also serves on the Sloan School Asian Executive Board and is a past member of the Visiting Committees for Economics and for Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.
The new E52 Building will be ready for occupancy in January. On March 3, 2016, the building will be officially dedicated and named the "Morris and Sophie Chang Building" in honor of the couple and their generosity to MIT.