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Top 10 Professors who Gave MIT a New Dimension

Published on 16 March, 2013 at 9:00 am By

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has been the center for seminal breakthroughs in the field of engineering, applied sciences, physics and mathematics for fairly long number of years. The primary reason behind such enormous achievements can possibly be attributed to the quality of faculty at this eminent educational powerhouse. Very few institutes across the world can match the superiority of professors teaching various disciplines in this celebrated institute. Here is a list of top 10 famous professors at MIT that made it all possible:

10. John Harbison:

He is a professor in Music and Theater Arts at MIT. John was in limelight in the year 1987 when he bagged the Pulitzer Prize for “Flight into Egypt.” Other than that, he is a celebrated musician, known worldwide for his symphonies, operas and large choral works. He also received Heinz Award in the field of Arts and Humanities in the year 1998.

John Harbison



9. Claude Shannon:

MIT professor, Claude Shannon is known as the father of modern digital communication and information theory. Interestingly enough, he was distantly related to the great scientist Newton. His work in the field of telecommunications made it possible for bits to be used in computer storage needed for pictures, voice streams and other data.

Claude Shannon


8. Walter Lewin:

A professor of Physics at MIT, Walter Lewin is a very famous Astrophysicist. He received several awards for his notable works in the field of Physics. In the year 1978, he received an award from NASA (Award for Exceptional Scientific Achievement) for his contribution in the field. He has published more than 450 research articles till date and still going strong.

Walter Lewin

7. Jerome Lettvin:

He was a cognitive scientist and professor Emeritus of Electrical and Bioengineering and Communication Physiology at MIT. He was very famous for his research journal “What the frog’s eye tells the frog’s brain.” He conducted several studies in the field of Neurology and Physiology apart from Politics, Philosophy and Poetry. Unfortunately, he left us for the heavenly abode at the age of 91 on 23rd April, 2011.

Jerome Lettvin

6. Salman Rushdie:

He is an honorary visiting professor at MIT who is affiliated with the Humanities department of the esteemed institute. A celebrated writer, Salman came under attack from the Islamist fundamentalists across the world after his book “The Satanic Verses” was published in the year 1988. He was also awarded the Austrian State Prize for European Literature in the year 1993.

Salman Rushdie

5. Peter A Diamond:


A prominent professor at MIT, Peter A Diamond is renowned for his US Social Security policy. He received Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics in the year 2010. He is known for his contribution to diverse areas of economics including government debt, capital accumulation, capital markets, labor markets, social insurance and optimal taxation.

Peter A Diamond

4. David Baltimore:

A Nobel laureate in Physiology and Medicine, David Baltimore is one of the most renowned professors in MIT. He received the Nobel Prize in 1975 for his contribution to the field of virology known as “Reverse Transcriptase Baltimore Classification.” His other famous discovery was the interaction of tumor viruses with the genetic material of the cell.

David Baltimore

3. Charles H Townes:

One of the most celebrated people who have ever been involved with faculty work in MIT, Charles H Townes was a professor in Physics Department. He is known for his theory and application of the maser. He shared Nobel Prize in Physics in the year 1964 with Nikolay Basov and Alexander Prokhorov. The Towns computers in Japan have been named after him as a tribute to this great scientist from MIT.

Charles H Townes

2. Franco Modigliani:

The winner of Nobel Memorial prize in Economics in 1985, Franco Modigliani served as a professor of Economics at MIT. He is regarded as one of the finest brains in the field of Economics ever for his huge contribution to the field. He formulated the vital Modigliani-Miller theorem along with Merton Miller in corporate finance. He was also the instigator of life cycle hypothesis.

Franco Modigliani

1. Noam Chomsky:


Undoubtedly, one of the most known and celebrated professors that taught in MIT, Naom Chomsky doesn’t require any introduction. He is a professor in the Linguistics and Philosophy Department at MIT. He is one of the longest serving professors in the institute. He has spent a total of 50 notable years of his life here. Author of many award winning books, he is one of the best selling writers worldwide.

Noam Chomsky


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