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New FAQs on Institute finances posted on web

A second set of frequently asked questions and answers on MIT's budget and money-saving measures (including layoffs) has been posted to the MIT Finances web site at The FAQs were prepared in response to comments and suggestions that came into the Finances web site.

Benefits open enrollment ends tomorrow

The annual benefits open enrollment period will end Thursday, Dec. 4. There will not be a second open enrollment window as in years past. Benefits-eligible employees who are interested in making changes to their health, dental or life insurance benefits or are interested in enrolling in a Flexible Spending Account for 2004 must do so by tomorrow. No action is required to maintain current coverage for 2004. Enroll or make changes on the web through Employee Self Service at

Anyone with questions on open enrollment should e-mail or call the campus Benefits Office at 253-6151. Lincoln Laboratory employees should contact the Lincoln Benefits Office at (781) 981-7055.

Get international documents early

The International Scholars Office (ISO) will be closed during the Institute holiday closing (Dec. 25 to Jan. 3). Anyone who requires year-end travel signatures, documents or questions answered should plan accordingly. New international faculty and researchers who arrive during the break are encouraged to register with the ISO as soon as possible.

Deshpande Center hosts Fall Innovation Week

The Deshpande Center will co-host the first MIT Fall Innovation Week on Dec. 4-6 and Dec. 10, bringing together campus organizations that promote innovation and entrepreneurship. Events include the $1K awards (a prelimiminary stage of the MIT $50K Entrepreneurship Competition); "New Tools for Chemical Biology" (a Biological Frontiers talk by Barbara Imperiali, professor of chemistry and biology); the sixth annual MIT Venture Capital Conference; and an Ignition Fo-rum on bioMEMS (bio-micro-electromechanical systems). The schedule can be found at

MIT, Cambridge collaborating on climate protection

An interactive forum titled "MIT and the City of Cambridge: Collaborating on Climate Protection" will take place on Thursday, Dec. 4 from 4-6 p.m. in Room 66-110. MIT and Cambridge environmental leaders will briefly describe current initiatives and their visions for future collaboration. Panelists include Vice Mayor Henrietta Davis, and Jamie Lewis Keith, managing director of MIT's Environmental Programs Office and Risk Management and MIT senior counsel.

The heart of the event will involve audience discussion of new ideas for climate protection programs. Results will feed into an IAP seminar at which students will work with MIT faculty and staff and Cambridge planners to develop innovative emissions reduction strategies. The event is sponsored by the Laboratory for Energy and the Environment.

Faculty, student directories now being distributed

MIT faculty/staff directories and student directories are being distributed through the distributed mail centers.
Student directories are being delivered to residence halls, fraternities, sororities and independent living groups. Students who live off campus may get copies by presenting an MIT ID at the Information Center in Room 7-121. Additional copies of either directory may be obtained by e-mailing, specifying the number of copies required.

Telephone directories and catalogues can be recycled by placing them in desk-side bins or in the blue-top common area bins. For more information about recycling, contact Kevin Healy at 253-6360 or

Humanities bookmobile showcases new materials

The Humanities Bookmobile, a project by the Humanities and Lewis Music libraries, will offer new books, DVDs and CDs for loan to members of the MIT community on Dec. 8 and 9 from 11 a.m. to noon in Lobby 10.

"It was a response to undergraduate students' remarks in a survey that we have no 'fun' books in the libraries ... We thought that bringing some of our interesting new books directly to people would help introduce our collections and our staff," said Sarah G. Wenzel, reference coordinator in the Humanities Library.

Books circulate for 28 days, and CDs and DVDs for three days. To view examples of new materials, see the Virtual Browsery at

Panel discussion looks at next steps for U.S. in Iraq

The Center for International Studies and The Boston Review will host a panel discussion titled "Iraq: What Now?" on Friday, Dec. 5 from noon to 1:30 p.m. in Wong Auditorium. The discussion, a CIS Starr Forum to be moderated by Stephen Van Evera, professor of political science and associate director of CIS, will focus on U.S. policy options in Iraq. Experts in terrorism, Shi'ite Islam and U.S. foreign policy--Daniel Benjamin, Juan Cole and Ivo Daalder--will explore developments inside Iraq and in U.S./Iraq relations. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, see

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on December 3, 2003.

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