In a rare moment of coverage of the divestment campaign at MIT, the Tech covered the call by MIT’s Vice President, Maria Zuber,  for faculty to weigh in on fossil fuel divestment.

“We can fully expect our students to come out in force and let us know what they think,” she wrote in the latest Faculty Newsletter, “but on this issue, we have heard from a small fraction of MIT’s 1,000-plus faculty so far.”

A petition launched by student group Fossil Free MIT calling for the institute to divest from fossil fuels has garnered 3,000 signatures and the administration’s attention. “The sheer quantity of signatures tells us that this issue merits thoughtful discussion,” Zuber said.

“There should be no expectation on your part that an outcome that is acceptable to you will emerge in the absence of your input,” she wrote to the faculty.

This call is sure to get faculty to bring their thoughts on divestment to the public instead of being discussed amongst themselves at the faculty club. However, in my opinion, one could read between the lines and see this call as one to bring out the anti-divestment rhetoric which hints that Zuber thinks many faculty do not support divestment and if they don’t speak out, MIT will, detriment to itself, divest from fossil fuels.

But we are all truly wondering where MIT faculty stand. Other schools, like Harvard and Stanford have open letters from the faculty signed by hundreds of supporters for divestment.

MIT Faculty, who’s side are you on?


Read the full article in The Tech at and read an accompanying Letter to the Editor by Fossil Free MIT’s Geoffrey Supran who points out some of the fallacies in the Vice President’s “facts”: