The BCS graduate student community includes about 100 students in more than 40 labs in Building 46 and other locations on the MIT campus.
Students benefit from a strong intellectual and social community with many opportunities to interact with each other and faculty, such as:
- Lab meetings, including joint meetings with more than one lab
- Weekly colloquia organized by BCS, the McGovern Institute, and the Picower Institute, featuring outside speakers (in person or remotely), usually including time for the speaker to meet with students and often followed by a catered reception.
- Seminars including a weekly "Cog Lunch" organized by graduate students, where BCS researchers present recent work, as well as talks organized by the Simons Center for the Social Brain and other units
- A weekly social hour where faculty and students chat over snacks, as well as building-wide parties during the year and a Building 46 retreat every other year
BCS Gradvocates is a grad student group that organizes events and advocates for student needs. They work with the department to put together events that help the graduate and wider BCS community. Their branches include: policy and advocacy, teaching and outreach, socials and community, diversity and inclusion, and career development. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for updates on meetings.
BCS CommUNITY Lunch Series
The CommUNITY Lunch Series is a biweekly opportunity for graduate students, techs, and postdocs of color to come together to share their experiences navigating academia. The goal of the luncheon is to create a safe, informal environment that encourages community building and discussion, created by and for people of color. CommUNITY lunches are open to BCS-affiliates, so feel free to forward it to people you know that may be interested. To receive emails about these events and others like it, subscribe here:
Graduate Student Council (GSC)
The GSC exists to enhance the overall graduate experience at MIT by promoting the general welfare and concerns of the graduate student body, creating new programs and initiatives to provide opportunities for growth and interaction, and communicating with the MIT Administration and Faculty on behalf of graduate students. The GSC is led by the Executive Committee and has various committees and boards to address graduate student issues.
Division of Student Life
The Division of Student Life provides an environment for students to test new ideas, develop leadership skills and create community at MIT, while advocating for and affirming their identities. Through co-curricular opportunities and experiences such as student organizations, events, cross-cultural education, civic engagement and leadership development, students gain invaluable skills and experiential knowledge that they will continue to develop during their time on campus and beyond as future leaders.
MIT LGBTQ+ Services
LBGTQ+ Services supports numerous student, employee, and alumnx groups as well as other departments and initiatives on campus aiming to foster equity, intersectionality, and the continuum of social justice. From individual student support to organizational development and institutional policy advocacy, LBGTQ+ Services' support, programming, and educational endeavors aim to enhance the experiences of MIT's LBGTQ+ community. The office's programming includes:
- LGBTQ+ Resources for graduate students
- trans@MIT, resources for trans* and gender questioning people and allies
Graduate Womxn at MIT
gwaMIT is an organization to support MIT graduate students seeking a space to talk about the experiences of being a woman and/or being coded as a woman, while acknowledging the diversity among people who have had these experiences.
Women's Community Center
The Margaret Cheney Room, MIT's women's community center, was founded in 1884 in recognition of the fact that women have traditionally been denied a safe space of their own, especially in the STEM fields. In light of its founding mission, the Cheney Room exists to promote community and empower all students at MIT who experience gender-based systems of oppression. This includes (but is not limited to) self-identified women, transgender women, and non-binary individuals.
Science Groups and Clubs
Science Policy Initiative
The Science Policy Initiative (SPI) at MIT was founded in 2008 by a group of students who recognized the importance of providing first-hand policy experience to MIT students. SPI is changing how scientists and engineers at MIT engage with policy-makers and the public. We aim to provide new perspectives on the interactions between science and public policy, and build a collective sense of responsibility necessary to positively affect society. In addition to our core programs, three of which are described below, SPI invites interested students to participate in monthly discussions of a current topic in science policy.
MIT Consulting Club
The Consulting Club at MIT aims to facilitate a seamless transition from graduate school to a successful career in management consulting, through awareness, skill building and networking.
MIT Biotech Group
The MIT Biotechnology Group aims to increase the pace of biotechnological innovation by building strong, symbiotic relationships between the MIT community and thought-leaders in academia, industry, and business. They endeavor to serve the MIT community by facilitating development of the knowledge, skills, networks, and experiences to prepare members for biotechnology-related careers.
Communicating Science Workshop for Scientists
Communicating Science is a workshop series organized by graduate students, for graduate students, focused on science communication skills. Their goal is to empower future leaders in technical communication to share the results from research in their field to broad and diverse audiences, not just practitioners in their fields.
Science Education Outreach Opportunities
MIT Educational Studies Program
The MIT Educational Studies Program (ESP) was created by MIT students in 1957 to make a difference in the Boston, Cambridge, and MIT communities by sharing knowledge and creativity with local high school students. Since then, it has grown to support well over three thousand students each year with the help of MIT students.
Science Club for Girls
Since its founding in 1994, Science Club for Girls (SCFG) has provided girls-specific programming by connecting girls in K-12 grades, especially those from underrepresented groups, with female mentor-scientists through free science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs in a fun, nurturing, interactive environment.