Funded projects

Since the first request for proposals in 2002, the Office of Graduate Education has reviewed 564 proposals, 335 of which have received funding.

Successful proposals have followed a variety of formats, from events embracing large and inclusive constituencies, to those providing a focused experience for fewer individuals, to those offering a framework or structure for ongoing contact. Both individual grant authors and teams of organizers have executed successful projects.

Funded in 2021-22

This year graduate student life grants underwent some further refining after last years transition to focus more broadly on the graduate student experience incorporating broader categories of events. We reduced the number of cycles to three per year July, October, and April.

Brief descriptions of the funded grants will be coming soon. For more information, contact gradexperience@mit.edu.

Funded in 2020-2021

This year graduate student life grants underwent a transition to focus more broadly on the graduate student experience incorporating broader categories of events. Also students are now able to four times per year July, October, January, and April (note July grant cycle was not held for 2020).

See brief description of the funded grants below. For more information, contact gradexperience@mit.edu.

RAINBOW DANCE

Through music, movement, and storytelling, Rainbow dance provides a symbolic journey into the world of Nature and relationship, encouraging the growth of an empowered and self-nurturing child.

VIRTUAL MUSIC TIME FOR KIDS

A virtual music instruction to promote education and bonding for children and their parents.

COMMUNITY BUILDING THROUGH ICE CREAM SOCIALS

The CMS Graduate Student Ice Cream Social will help connect CMS master’s students across class years through bi-monthly ice cream social hours. 

SYNERGY II: COMMUNICATING OCEAN SCIENCE THROUGH ART

Synergy II is designed to unite ocean scientists (e.g. doctoral students from the MIT-WHOI joint program) with artists (from Art League Rhode Island) in finding a common language to communicate oceanographic life and activity through artistic expression.

CAREER PANEL AND WORKSHOPS FOR WATER SECTOR

Connecting graduate students with industry/ NGO professionals and academics to offer perspectives on potential career paths within the water sector.

WRITING TOGETHER ONLINE

Training and mentoring graduate students to facilitate writing groups for grad students to build a community of academic writers with the MIT writing center.

FORCE OF NATURE

Developing and publishing raps on Youtube which introduce and explain topics in Earth Science (and hopefully beyond).

FIND YOUR NEXT ADVENTURE

Find Your Next Adventure is a chat series that features weekly hour-long fireside conversations between graduate students and successful female professionals from all career trajectories.

JOURNEY TO A PH.D.: A CONVERSATION WITH DR. MALIKA GRAYSON

Womxn in MechE, gwaMIT Mentoring, and Black Graduate Student’s Association host Dr. Malika Grayson, author of Black Girl’s Guide to the PhD., to discuss her experiences obtaining her PhD in Mechanical Engineering at Cornell and how she leveraged strong mentoring relationships to tackle academic and personal challenges.

VIRTUAL PAINT NIGHT

Paint night for graduate students to relieve pressure and to develop their artistic creativity.

HOME COOKING AROUND THE WORLD (PLANT BASED VERSION)

Student-lead virtual home cooking session with plant based recipes from different regions across the world.

DRAWING CLASSES FOR GRAD STUDENTS

Online drawing classes for graduate students in computer science to counter the isolation and stress they are experiencing in these difficult times.

BLACK ART COLLECTIVE

The Black Art Collective is a forum and an opportunity for students of color to create community and share common experience through art, as well as an opportunity to share their talents with the broader MIT community through the finale showcase event.

CONNECTING MINDS TALK SERIES

A monthly talk series for junior researchers in brain and cognitive science at MIT and other institutions to present their research, provide feedback on others’ work, and foster collaboration in a student-only space.

OUTDOOR YOGA & MEDITATION SESSION

Outdoor yoga and meditation to create a grounding and relaxing environment for small groups of students.

GLASS SHARDS WOMXN SCIENTISTS SPEAKER SERIES

The Glass Shards speaker series invites womxn scientists in the field of biology to discuss career journeys and professional development with womxn biology graduate students.

FACULTY PANEL DISCUSSION

Panel discussion where MIT Professors discuss how to address the challenges faced by graduate students, especially women, and those from minority and LGBTQ communities.

OUTDOOR ACRO YOGA CLASSES

Teaching acroyoga to grad students to create a sense of community and grounding.

VIRTUAL MARTIAL ARTS FOR KIDS

Eight week online Martial Arts course for kids!

ONLINE ART CLASS

Virtual art class for the Children of MIT community members, with a great focus on graduate students.

MUSIC TIME FOR KIDS

A virtual music education class for children of grad students and other in the MIT community.

MECHANICAL ENGINEERING MAKER COMMUNITY QUILT

Developing a sense of community and shared experience with individual square made using different fabrication techniques.

STUDENT TAUGHT HAND THROWN CERAMICS WORKSHOP

Teaching students how to hand thrown ceramics to build community and creativity.

COOKING CLUB

We are organizing a summer cooking club for graduate students to socialize and have fun together.

PROYECTO COMUNIDAD

Mentorship project directed to MIT LatinX undergraduate students interested in learning about the graduate student experience.

MIT SCIENCE POLICY REVIEW VOLUME II PRINT EDITION

Creating a print version of the second volume of MIT Science Policy Review.

VIRTUAL MARTIAL ARTS FOR KIDS, ONLINE ART CLASS, MUSIC TIME

Creative classes for children of MIT students.

URBANISM IN DIALOGUE – STUDENT-LED DISCUSSION SERIES

A student-led discussion series promoting engagement on urbanism between students of analogous fields at MIT.

Funded in 2019-2020

In the 18th annual round of Graduate Student Life Grants, 12 new proposals and 6 renewal proposals out of the total 21 submitted were offered funding by the Office of Graduate Education.  Since the program was introduced in 2002, the grant selection panel has reviewed 550 proposals and funded 329 of those. For more information, contact gslg@mit.edu.

RFP 18.07 WOMEN IN POLITICAL SCIENCE COFFEE HOUR (RENEWED)

A monthly coffee hour for women student in the Political Science Department.

RFP 18.20 BGSA COMMUNITY GATHERINGS (RENEWED)

Provides a venue for community building among MIT Black graduates, their allies, faculty and staff, and local leaders in addition to stimulating discussions about cultural, social, political, and professional topics.

RFP 18.23 THE MICROBIAL ENGINEERING AND SCIENCES SEMINAR (RENEWED)

Monthly seminars to foster the exchange of ideas between the people working on microbiology across diverse departments at MIT. 

RFP 18.26 MIT GU-ZHENG CLUB (RENEWED)

Helps promote public awareness and appreciation of traditional Chinese arts and ultimately fosters cultural diversity and creative expression on campus.

RFP 18.28 CREATING A DMSE REFS PROGRAM (RENEWED)

Starting a DMSE REFS program in order to provide a happier, healthier environment for the students of the department.

RFP 18.30 MAKERCUP (RENEWED)

Sharing knowledge and building community through a personal project competition and teaching events.

RFP 19.01 MEDIA LAB FUTURE OF WOMEN

A community women’s group for women in Media Lab.

RFP 19.03 MAKERWORKS FACULTY-STUDENT FAB FRIDAY

Sharing knowledge and building community between faculty and students in a Maker Space event and build activity.

RFP 19.05 AMY’S BREAKFAST CLUB

Weekly breakfast meetings with Prof. Finkelstein and her advisees to foster an environment where students feel comfortable discussing preliminary research ideas.

RFP 19.06 CHEME KAYAKING & VIRTUAL REALITY

Three interactive events, cooking, kayaking, and virtual reality, that encourage faculty and students to work together in an engaging atmosphere.

RFP 19.09 GPSW FRIDAY WRITING RE-TREAT!

Bringing GPSW Faculty and Students together through sharing food and friendly conversation during the one hour lunch break between two intensive Friday classes attended by all GPSW students and multiple faculty members.

RFP 19.10 POLITICAL SCIENCE FILM FESTIVAL

Brings together students and faculty with research interests in political issues and an appreciation for cinema to discuss the events depicted in classic films from the perspective of political scientists while also creating an informal and collegial space to build relationships in the department and across the university through a shared appreciation of classic film.

RFP 19.11 EAPS MATRIX LUNCHES

Matrix lunches allow members of the EAPS department who serve in very different roles (student, administrator, research scientist, faculty) to meet and converse over lunch.

RFP 19.13 DUSP ANTI-RACIST WORKSHOP AND READING GROUPS

An anti-racism workshop and sustained reading groups for DUSP students and faculty will help the community interrogate “the roots of racism in white culture with the intention of dealing with racism at its source, as well as with its impact on communities of color”.

RFP 19.14 FACULTY-STUDENT FIELD SOCIALS

A series of social events which aim to bring the students of each “field” of economics together with their peers and the faculty that are working on similar topics of interest.

RFP 19.15 LGSA FACULTY SERIES

Facilitates networking and mentorship relationships between LatinX students and faculty members, allowing graduate students to learn from these successful LatinX role models.

RFP 19.16 SCARVES FOR ALL

MIT Architecture faculty and students join forces to design Spring/Summer 2020’s most desirable accessory!

RFP 19.17 FAIL! – INSPIRING RESILIENCE

FAIL! Conference aims to connect grad students with faculties and de-stigmatize failures by having faculty members share stories of failures, humbleness, and resilience.

Funded in 2018-19

In the 17th annual round of Graduate Student Life Grants, 22 new proposals and 2 renewal proposals out of the total 37 submitted were offered funding by the Office of Graduate Education.  Since the program was introduced in 2002, the grant selection panel has reviewed 529 proposals and funded 329 of those. For more information, contact gslg@mit.edu.

RFP 16.13 RUSSIAN CONNECTION CULTURAL GATHERINGS (RENEWED)

Inclusive activities for Russian-speaking graduate students and others in the graduate community with an interest in Russian language and culture.

RFP 17.14 MUTUAL PICTURES: SA+P SCREEN & DINE (RENEWED)

Film screening and dinner events for the graduate student art and filmmaking community.

RFP18.02 SPACE MOVIE NIGHT

A space community building movie night.

RFP18.03 MIT SLOAN GREATER CHINA CLUB PROGRAMS

Indoor activities for students and spouses, including terrarium making, embroidery classes, chocolate making, and paint night.

RFP18.07 WOMEN IN POLITICAL SCIENCE COFFEE HOUR

Monthly coffee hour for women student in the Political Science Department.

RFP 18.08 BIOLOGY DIVERSITY COMMUNITY 2019 MENTORSHIP EVENTS

Events for underrepresented students in the biology community.

RFP 18.09 HOW TO INFLATE ALMOST ANYTHING

A practical and collaborative workshop series to teach students how to make inflatables, resulting in a public-facing exhibition.

RFP 18.14 DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION NIGHTS AT THE THIRSTY EAR PUB

Allows cultural and underrepresented minority groups the chance to foster connections within the MIT community in the welcoming atmosphere of the Thirsty Ear Pub.

RFP18.16 ECONOMICS MENS ET MANUS

Active events for Economics PhD students to foster interactions across cohorts and across fields.

RFP 18.17 BLACK MIRROR VIEWING PARTIES + EDUCATED DISCUSSION

Evening events that brings together graduate student fans of the popular TV series to watch select episodes and discuss, question, and consider possible directions for their creative technology work.

RFP 18.20 BGSA COMMUNITY GATHERINGS

Community-building amongst MIT Black graduates, their allies, faculty and staff, and local leaders that foster stimulating discussions about cultural, social, political, and professional topics.

RFP 18.21 MACHINE VISION EVENT SERIES

Machine Vision is a series of workshares and discussions to build bridges between graduate students, scholars and artists at MIT working to imagine the future of increasingly blurry boundaries between human and computer perception.

RFP 18.23 THE MICROBIAL ENGINEERING AND SCIENCES SEMINAR (MESS)

Monthly seminars to foster exchange of ideas between the people working on microbiology across diverse departments at MIT.

RFP 18.26 MIT GU-ZHENG CLUB

Promotes public awareness and appreciation of traditional Chinese arts and fosters cultural diversity and creative expression on campus.

RFP 18.28 CREATING A DMSE REFS PROGRAM

Starting a DMSE REFS program in order to provide a happier, healthier environment for the students of the department.

RFP 18.29 VIRTUAL REALITY COMPASSION DANCE 

An Afro futurist Virtual Reality project used as tool for civic engagement and facilitating healthy conversations about race and class.

RFP 18.30 MAKERCUP

Student-to-student teaching events and a personal project competition that encourages new members to get involved in the MIT Maker community.

RFP 18.32 MAS LATINO

A festival celebrating Latin American culture and talent at MIT through arts and sciences.

RFP 18.12 CLASSICAL INDIAN MUSIC CULTURAL ENRICHMENT

Performances, lecture demonstrations, and master classes by expert classical Indian musicians geared specifically to students in the MIT community.

RFP 18.15 NETWORKING EVENTS FOR JAPAN TECH TREK

Post-trek events for trip participants from several cohorts.

RFP 18.19 IMAGINATIVE TRANSFORMATIONS: INDIGENOUS ARTISTS SPEAKER SERIES

A series of Indigenous artists presentations to open dialogues with MIT students and community members.

RFP 18.22 COMMUNITY EXPERIENCES OUTSIDE OF MIT CAMPUS

Generating community experiences outside of MIT campus by attending cultural and sporting events in Boston.

RFP 18.34 MONTHLY SOCIALS FOR THE MEDIA LAB BLACK COMMUNITY

An effort to provide a safe space of conversation, strength, and support for the Black Community within the MIT Media Lab.

Funded in 2017-18

In the 16th annual round of Graduate Student Life Grants, 10 new proposals and 12 renewal proposals out of the total 30 submitted were offered funding by the Office of Graduate Education.  Since the program was introduced in 2002, the grant selection panel has reviewed 492 proposals and funded 305 of those. For more information, contact gslg@mit.edu.

RFP15.08 BREAKING THE MOLD CONFERENCE/HACKATHON (RENEWED)

An interactive one-day event to build tools to combat unconscious bias and intolerance.

RFP15.13 ECONOMICS GRAD FAMILIES (RENEWED)

A department-based initiative that creates sub-groups of Economics PhD students, and offers social events such as Field Lawn Day, Trivia, and Snow Day.

RFP15.18 SCM ROUND-THE-WORLD DINNER/MOVIES (RENEWED)

Community-building dinners with movies and cultural events for students in the Supply Chain Management program.

RFP15.29 POSTSCRIPT DINNERS (RENEWED)

A series of small group dinners open to all Architecture graduate students to facilitate research-based discussions.

RFP16.05 BUILDING SCIENCE KITS FOR SCHOOLS (RENEWED)

Events at MIT Edgerton Center where graduate students assemble molecule kits from existing materials, to be given as outreach materials to local K-12 schools.

RFP16.07 BIOLOGY GRADUATE STUDENT SCIENCE RETREAT (RENEWED)

A one-day Spring retreat to bring Biology graduate students with different lab affiliations together for academic talks, poster session, and social events.

RFP16.10 ASL & DEAF CULTURE CLASS (RENEWED)

American Sign Language classes offered to the MIT community, in partnership with MindHandHeart.

RFP16.11 POLITICS AND POLICY COMMUNITY BUILDING (RENEWED)

Community-building events and local outings for graduate students from various departments interested in science policy.

RFP16.13 MIT RUSSIAN CLUB (RENEWED)

Various cultural events for Russian and Slavic community, hosted by MIT Russian club, and open to all interested graduate students. 

RFP16.16 BCS INTERDEPARTMENTAL STUDENT SOCIALS (RENEWED)

Monthly interdepartmental student socials and focused discussions hosted by graduate students in Brain and Cognitive Science.

RFP16.17 MECHANICAL ENGINEERING MONTHLY SOCIALS (RENEWED)

Monthly joint socials for graduate students and faculty in Mechanical Engineering.

RFP16.20 GENERAL AUDIENCE GRADUATE SEMINAR @ SIDNEY-PACIFIC (RENEWED)

Monthly dinner-time seminars by various members of the graduate student community, hosted by Sidney-Pacific residence.

RFP17.02 REEL FUTURES

Monthly gathering open to the entire MIT community to explore the future through the vehicle of cinema. REEL FUTURES will feature a screening of films about the future by living filmmakers, with a focus on emerging directors.

RFP17.04 WINTER MINDFUL ACTIVITIES

Indoor activities for students and spouses, including terrarium making, embroidery classes, chocolate making, paint night.

RFP17.05 GRADUATE FAMILY BRUNCH

Series of brunches at Westgate for campus & off-campus families.

RFP17.06 FIERCE FOREVER

Drag show with graduate student performers, open to the entire MIT community.

RFP17.09 DUSP ESCAPE THE ROOM

Collaboration and team building through “escape room” activities.

RFP17.10 URBANAFRICA CULTURAL EVENTS

Co-hosted events for student groups interested in African issues, including museum events, book talks, film screenings, theater and dance performances relevant to styles or traditions across the African Diaspora.

RFP17.14 ACT-BRIDGE SCREEN + DINE

Film and art presentations by MIT students and local collaborators, hosted by students in Art, Culture, and Technology program and open to the art and filmmaker community at MIT.

RFP17.17 OPEN SOURCE HARDWARE SUMMIT

Partnership between MIT students and the national non-profit Open Source Hardware Association (OHSWA) to kick start a more active campus community interested in open source hardware.

RFP17.18 COOKING SERIES

Student-hosted cooking class series, open to all students.

RFP17.19 ONEMIT LAB CRAWL

Sloan students visit research labs to foster connections and collaborations.