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Thousands Around the World Invited To Attend Virtually MIT's Commencement

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has invited some 29,000 of its alumni/ae along with the world to its June 5 commencement through a live Webcast via the Internet. President William J. Clinton and world-renowned AIDS researcher Dr. David D. Ho are this year's commencement speakers.

MIT President Charles M. Vest said, "We are delighted to open the doors of MIT to the world using advanced technology, the development of which is at the heart of MIT's mission of innovation."

Anyone with a personal computer connected to the Internet will be able to join virtually the 10,000 graduates, family, friends, and MIT faculty and staff attending the ceremony in MIT's Killian Court. The Webcast audience can begin viewing the Academic Procession in process starting at 10:30 a.m. EDT. The commencement exercises end at 2 p.m. EDT. The entire ceremony will be distributed and digitally archived by RealNetworks for 30 days.

Invitations to the broadcast were emailed to 29,000 alumni and incoming students around the world this week. The White House Web site and popular Web lists of "cool sites" also will be encouraging Web audiences to view the ceremony.

Details about the Webcast and how to participate are featured on the MIT Web site at http://web.mit.edu/commencement/1998/video.html. The site enables visitors to download required software and test drive its capability before the live broadcast.

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