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Energy Studies

New minor addresses a major issue
December 21, 2009

Tim Grejtak ‘10 was one of two students who dreamed up the idea for the dorm energy conservation competition in 2006, and he’s been helping to run it ever since. So when he heard that MIT would be offering a new minor in energy studies, he made a point of being the first student to sign up for it–literally minutes after the registration form was finalized in late September. “It’s going to be very popular, I have a feeling,” says Grejtak, a mechanical-engineering major. In fact, well over 400 students have indicated their interest.

The new energy minor can be combined with any major course of study. Unlike most energy concentrations available at other institutions, it is designed to be inherently cross-­disciplinary-and unlike any other concentration at MIT, it encompasses all five of the Institute’s schools.

The energy minor is the product of two years of work by the MIT Energy Initiative’s Education Task Force, cochaired by associate professor Vladimir Bulovic and professor Don Lessard. Bulovic says that it “encompasses the multidisciplinary nature of energy science, technology, and policy and covers the range of energy challenges, including energy-related climate change, pollution, and associated poverty issues.”

Energy represents “the largest crisis that my generation will face,” ­Grejtak says. “It’s going to be a major problem for us, and this energy minor acknowledges that and gives us a way to be qualified to address these problems.”

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