These are challenging times, as COVID-19 has rearranged all of our lives. Like you, we miss the vitality and sense of community in our classrooms and labs, dorms and hallways, and we’re eager to return to campus and engage again with you, our amazing students, in-person.
We know that many of you have been wondering about summer options, so let’s get the disappointing news out of the way. As outlined in the president’s letter, summer at MIT will be different than what most of you are used to or were hoping for. Specifically…
- MIT-sponsored student domestic and international travel is suspended for the entire summer;
- all summer programming in which participants live in MIT residence halls will need to be virtualized, cancelled, or rescheduled; and
- all other summer programming will need to take place remotely through June 28, 2020.
Decisions about the remainder of summer will be made when more information about public health conditions is available, likely by late May.
While these choices were made with the safety and well-being of the MIT community in mind, that doesn’t make them any less painful—for you and for all of us. Part of what makes this place special is how experiential learning is baked into everything we do, and we know that many things cannot be done as well, or at all, away from campus and apart from each other.
This is MIT, however. When we encounter a hard problem, we find a way to solve it. We’re working hard to expand existing programs and create news ones that will allow you to pursue academic interests, develop professional skills and networks, advance entrepreneurial projects, and earn income. (Below, there’s a partial list of programs that are still happening this summer and are actively recruiting MIT student participants.)
To succeed, we also need your energy and passion to help reimagine and reinvent our summer experiences. To make them robust and special. To make them worthy of MIT. We invite you to join us in shaping what’s possible. Please share your thoughts and ideas with us here, and stay tuned for more ways to get involved coming soon.
We will be back in touch as soon as we know more about options after June. In the meantime, we know this might not have been the summer you were expecting, but we are confident that, with your help, we can make it a meaningful one.
Ian & Kate
Ian A. Waitz, Vice Chancellor for Undergraduate and Graduate Education
Kate Trimble, Senior Associate Dean & Director of the Office of Experiential Learning
Selected Summer Program Options (as of April 23, 2020)
- UROP: Remote research opportunities are available in a wide range of academic departments, interdisciplinary laboratories and centers. Make real contributions to research while you build meaningful faculty connections, explore new fields, and gain the knowledge and skills necessary for your future career. UROPs available for pay, credit (with tuition waiver), or volunteer. Apply here (deadline May 7).
- Internships and Industry Connections: Over 1200 internships are currently posted in Handshake, of which 367 have deadlines between now and May 1st. Internships locations span the US, with nearly 500 in the Northeast and 280 on the East Coast. Log on to Handshake, save a job search, and receive email or phone notifications when newly posted opportunities match your interests. For more resources to help you this summer, visit Career Advising and Professional Development’s COVID-19 FAQs and the MIT Alumni Advisors Hub.
- Pre-Health Opportunities: Summer is a great opportunity for pre med and pre health students to gain medical exposure and service opportunities to develop their applications to medical and other health related programs. Check out this collection of Pre Health volunteer and research opportunities, mentor a k-12 student, or seek clinical experiences to help during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Social Impact Employment: Paid internships with non-profits, NGOs, and public agencies build your skills and resume while addressing social and environmental change. Undergraduate and graduate students may apply. More information on available opportunities through the PKG Center (deadlines vary).
- Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Check out the COVID-19 Rapid Innovation Dashboard that aggregates the many MIT efforts here for you to explore, learn more, and get activated. (MIT Innovation Initiative)
- Maker Community: This summer, Project Manus will be hosting various virtual activities, including workshops, socials, and trainings. Our calendar will be regularly updated, and you can subscribe to the announcement list here.
- K-12 Education: MIT’s PK-12 community is developing summer teaching and coaching opportunities accompanied by training and possibly certification. They are hoping to reach K-12 students through tutoring and mentoring in MIT Mens et Manus fashion. Details are still being worked out, but you can register your interest here.
- Global Opportunities with MISTI: If you’re already living outside of the US, MISTI may be able to help you find an internship in your current location. You can also explore remote language-learning opportunities, webinars, and podcasts. Get in touch with MISTI for more information.
- Experiential Ethics: Explore the real-world ethical landscape in industry, science, and technology through this new 3-unit remote class. Designed to complement other summer experiences and develop interpersonal, professional, and leadership competencies. Undergraduates can apply to join the course (deadline May 11, limited enrollment by permission of instructor).
- Other/non-MIT: Collectively brainstorm innovative engineering ideas that could help ameliorate the virus itself and/or its collateral discontinuities, such as impacts on the supply chain and closure of schools. Call for Engineering Action on the COVID-19 Crisis (via the National Association of Engineers)