Era of great change closing with 2004 seniors

Carnegie Mellon University has been described as the only top-25 university that was founded in the 20th century, and while it has already established itself as a world leader in research and education, the University?s leaders have never succumbed to complacency. In each year that passes, fresh ideas and new challenges open up opportunities to bring change to the University community.

Having walked the campus for the last four years, graduates of the class of 2004 have seen numerous transformations take shape. From the negotiation of distant satellite campuses to new buildings around the campus in Pittsburgh to a historic donation that permanently altered the face of the business school, there has never been a shortage of news.

Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar

After years of negotiation, University officials inked an agreement with The Qatar Foundation to build a branch campus at the Education City development near Doha, Qatar. The campus, established by the Emir of Qatar to further educational pursuits in that country, already has satellite efforts from Texas A&M University, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Weill Cornell Medical College in addition to CMU?s programs in business administration and
computer science.

Initially, the campus will only have a small number of students, but the University views the new programs as an
opportunity to expand its international brand recognition and eventually promote the ideals of Western education
throughout the region.

The Tepper School of Business

Early on the morning of March 19, CMU students received an e-mail proclaiming ?Breaking News? about a major gift to the University. David Tepper, an MBA graduate from the class of 1982, pledged a gift of $55 million to the business school; as such, the Graduate School of Industrial Administration and the School of Industrial Administration would henceforth be renamed the Tepper School of Business.

The announcement was followed by a gathering of hundreds of cheering and smiling business students in the University Center?s Kirr Commons and a campus-wide barrage of posters. Most of the donation has been earmarked for the business school?s endowment.

Expansion and the Master Plan

The past several years have seen new construction in every part of the main campus. Following years of failed attempts, the vacant basement space in the University Center was finally finished for student use, containing food and entertainment space and a centralized mail facility paramount to postal efficiency on campus. The failed partnership with Intel to renovate the UC basement space was reborn with the new construction of the Collaborative Innovation Center, taking shape on the hillside adjacent to Hamburg Hall.

Additionally, New House, completed May 2003, became one of the nation?s premier environmentally-friendly college residence buildings, while contradicting the normal first-year living paradigm with unparalleled amenities.

The University also plans to open its new library facility on Monday. The Posner Center is designed to hold the Posner family?s rare book collection, meeting space, and rotating fine arts exhibits.

Student College

In the fall of 2001, University officials announced an unprecedented teaching opportunity for students: Students would be able to register to teach a course of their choice starting in the fall 2002 semester. The program, Student College at Carnegie Mellon or StuCo, gives general elective credit to both StuCo students and their teachers.

The program was started jointly by Ian Nieves, a fifth-year senior, and Noble Shore, a junior; both students were computer science majors. The project was quickly taken under the wing of Mark Stehlik, the assistant dean for undergraduate education for SCS. Modeled after a similar program started in 1968 at Oberlin College in Ohio, StuCo is heading into its third year with courses being taught in a wide variety of subjects ranging from knitting to anime.

Political activism

The student body at Carnegie Mellon shed its image as being apathetic, voicing more opinions and becoming more politically active. Ranging from protests against military funding of the University and anti-war in Iraq demonstrations for more than a year, the gatherings drew in total thousands of participants from around greater Pittsburgh. Students traveled to Washington, D.C., to protest the actions of the International Monetary Fund.

The opposition was likewise well heard, and included one incident in which students protested an anti-war protest occurring, without a permit, on Forbes Avenue.