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Making Engineers Smart—and Savvy

A new MIT leadership program grafts social skills onto problem solvers

3 min read

Pushed by an entrepreneurial alumnus, MIT is determined to retire the stereotype of the antisocial engineer.

Come June, the Bernard M. Gordon–MIT Engineering Leadership Program will graduate its first class. The program is designed to give budding engineers skills that go beyond the technical—risk assessment, decision making, interpersonal relations, resourcefulness, and flexibility. Gordon, a successful inventor, made it all possible by donating US $20 million.

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Asad Madni and the Life-Saving Sensor

His pivot from defense helped a tiny tuning-fork prevent SUV rollovers and plane crashes

11 min read
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Asad Madni and the Life-Saving Sensor

In 1992, Asad M. Madni sat at the helm of BEI Sensors and Controls, overseeing a product line that included a variety of sensor and inertial-navigation devices, but its customers were less varied—mainly, the aerospace and defense electronics industries.

And he had a problem.

The Cold War had ended, crashing the U.S. defense industry. And business wasn’t going to come back anytime soon. BEI needed to identify and capture new customers—and quickly.

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