The Massachusetts Institute of Technology's board of trustees today elected Provost L. Rafael Reif as president  of the top-tier research university. He will replace neuroscientist Susan Hockfield , who was the first life scientist to lead MIT, on 2 July.
Reif, who has been an MIT faculty member since 1980, became the institute's chief academic officer in 2005. During his tenure, Reif presided over the development of Web projects that offer MIT and Harvard University courses online for free and led faculty efforts to recruit and retain minorities and women.
Faculty, staff, and students got a chance to welcome the president-elect and his family at a campus reception this afternoon.