Throughout its history, Massachusetts Institute of Technology placed particular importance on invention. In 2001 the university expressed its intention to display course materials online as a part of the Open Course project. The president of the institution was first to admit severe restrictions and sexist discriminations, promising to find a solution to the problem. This resulted in the appointment of the first female president of Massachusetts Institute of Technology in December 2004. Today women faculty members make up a balanced proportion of the university staff.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology rates highest in many indices. In 2004 it was ranked as the most selective university in the nation according to the Atlantic Monthly. The U.S. News and World Report regards Massachusetts Institute of technology as one of five U.S. universities to receive the highest assessment score together with such institutions of higher learning as Yale, Harvard, Princeton and Stanford. The endowment of the university totals $6.8 billion, which is regarded as six largest in the United States.
Structurally speaking the university is comprised of five schools and one college, divided into 26 academic departments: the School of Architecture and Planning with the departments of Architecture, Urban Studies and Planning, Media Art and Sciences; School of Humanities, Art and Social Sciences with the departments of Comparative Media Studies, Anthropology, Foreign Languages and Literatures, Economics, Humanities, History, Literature, Linguistics and Philosophy; School of Engineering, comprising departments of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Chemical Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Biological Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Nuclear Engineering; the School of Science, including the departments of Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics, Physics, Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences; Alfred P. Sloan School of Management and the Whitaker College of Health Sciences and Technology, referred to as the Harvard MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.
Among other prominent establishments of the university are MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, the MIT Media Lab, the Whitehead Institute and the Lincoln Laboratory. Massachusetts Institute of Technology produced many U.S. celebrated politicians, writers, scientists, inventors and executives. The institution is affiliated with 61 Nobel Prize winners.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology establishes friendly relations with a number of leading U.S. universities and colleges. It cooperates as much as competes with Harvard University, holding joint conferences and launching joint programs, including the Harvard MIT Data Center and Harvard MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.
The undergraduate exchanged program is maintained with the University of Cambridge. MIT was an important player in the establishment and development of the Kanpur Indian Institute of Technology. The relations with the Nan yang Technological University in Singapore and National University of Singapore resulted in the Singapore MIT alliance, which has enabled Massachusetts Institute of Technology to provide a higher number of students with a quality engineering curriculum.