Talk Title: Enhancing Impact and Effectiveness of University Education: The MIT Story
Date: Monday, 23rd November, 2015
Time: 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm
Venue: Habib University Auditorium

Abstract of the Talk

In recent years there has been great international debate about what kind of college education best prepares students for the world we live in today. For many, the emergence of the digital economy, globalization, the dominance of financial institutions, and the ever-presence of computers has created a belief that students should be concentrating on so-called STEM fields – science, technology, engineering, and medicine. Indeed, in many countries it is difficult to find alternatives to this kind of education.
Yet the most pressing and complicated problems that we face in the world today will not be solved by STEM alone - these problems are fundamentally human problems. Whether it is entrenched warfare, climate change, poverty, discrimination, clean water, adequate employment, disease, STEM alone will not lead to lasting solutions. It is only through a rigorous liberal arts education that students can learn how to deal with these human problems, and become the leaders we need in the days ahead.
In this talk Dr. Deborah Fitzgerald will describe how the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and other universities have met these challenges while still maintaining technical leadership.

Event Poster

About The Yohsin Lecture Series

This Yohsin Lecture is part of the Presidential Lecture Series that is sponsored by the Office of the President to bring the most distinguished scholars, artists and critics of our time to Habib University for engagement with civil society and the University's faculty and students. The Lecture is administered by Habib University's different schools and academic centers depending on the nature of talk and the invited guest.

Speaker Profile

Deborah K. Fitzgerald is a Professor of the History of Technology, in the Program in Science, Technology, and Society, and the former Kenan Sahin Dean of the MIT School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences (2006-2015). She received her B.A. from Iowa State University (History and English, 1978) and her Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania (History and Sociology of Science, 1985). Prior to joining the MIT faculty in 1988, she was an Assistant Professor in the Department of the History of Science at Harvard University.
Fitzgerald's research focuses on food and agriculture in 20th century America. She is interested in the role of federal, private, and corporate institutions supporting agriculture, in the character of rural life vis-a-vis growing modernization efforts; in the emergence of scientific, technological, and economic ways of knowing and changing the agricultural world; in the interface between nature and landscape, on one hand and agriculture on the other; in the reciprocal influence of American and non-American agricultural practices and ideas; and in the role of commodity overproduction in the emergence of the modern food industry.
She is the author of The Business of Breeding: Hybrid Corn in Illinois, 1890-1920 (Cornell, 1990), and Every Farm a Factory: The Industrial Ideal in American Agriculture (Yale University Press, 2003), which won the 2003 Theodore Saloutos Prize for ‘Best Book of the Year’ from the Agricultural History Society, of which Fitzgerald is a past president. Fitzgerald is also the co-sponsor, with Professor Harriet Ritvo, of the MIT Seminar in Environmental and Agricultural History (formerly the Modern Times/Rural Places Seminar). Dr. Fitzgerald is currently writing a book on the role of World War II in reshaping American farm design and food systems, which included the rise of highly processed foods.

Location Map

The talk will be held at

Habib University City Campus

Block 18, Gulistan-e-Jauhar
University Avenue, Off Shahrah-e-Faisal