Funded in 2003-04

In the third round of Graduate Student Life Grants, Dean Ike Colbert funded 23 proposals out of the total 34 submitted to the Graduate Students Office. Totalling $96,300, these grants address building graduate community at MIT in a variety of ways. Dean Colbert and the selection panel eagerly look forward to working with the authors to implement this second year of proposals.

If you have any questions about the current status of these proposals, please contact gslg [at]


RFP3-1 Active Bystanders Program ($2,000)

Develop support materials to stimulate interest in and provide training for “looking out for one another” through the Active Bystanders Program.

Provides outreach to students seeking skills training as active bystanders.


RFP3-2 Atomistic Modeling and Simulation Seminar ($3,000)

Bring together graduate students with shared interests to form a more cohesive community of atomistic modelers.

Improves communication and fosters community among students and faculty through seminars designed to offer intellectual and social content.


RFP3-5 BabyNet ($1,000)

Support new initiative that encourages mutual support through child-centered programming, playgroups, and a babysitting exchange among graduate student families, both on and off campus.

Offers support for underserved constituency, graduate students with families.


RFP3-6 Babysitting@MIT ($3,000)

Provide child care to students and their families so that they might attend meetings of organizations which have a direct impact on graduate student families.

Offers the opportunity to connect with other students, share experiences, advocate, and educate others about issues that impact graduate family life.


RFP3-8 Building Community through Service Learning ($5,600)

Support two initiatives that build graduate student community around the pedagogy of service learning: (1) an enhanced public service design lecture series to expand graduate student access to information about community-based invention and research, and develop graduate student networking opportunities by enhancing the social context for the lectures; and (2) a system of graduate student service learning brainstorming workshops and a working group to enable graduate students to share ideas, work in multidisciplinary teams, and teach, using service learning.

Develops avenues to ensure graduate student participation in service learning opportunities.


RFP3-11 Exposure to the Performing Arts ($5,000)

Bring together graduate students from across the campus to enjoy the performing arts of Boston by providing organization and subsidies for those who might otherwise not have the means to do so on their own. In addition, arrange forums for discussion of the performances either pre- or post-performance.

Provides crucial support for the arts through activities on and off campus.


RFP3-12 Graduate Student Art Openings ($5,000)

Continue to underwrite a reception hosted by the List Visual Arts Center for graduate students featuring the Student Loan Art Exhibition; introduce a lecture series that introduces new exhibits to smaller groups of graduate students. Based on the success of the past two fall receptions, the List is assured of this funding on an annual basis.

Offers ongoing support to events with proven track record.


RFP3-13 Graduate Student Community Art Exhibit ($2,000)

Design and implement a juried art exhibit that features the work of graduate students and their families to be held in the Bush Room in April 2004.

Offers support for the arts, spotlighting those graduate students with talents in the visual arts.


RFP3-14 Handy Grad Workshops for Off Campus Students ($2,329)

Subsidize Hobby Shop membership fees for more than 100 graduate students who participate in workshops to create a finished piece of furniture for their off campus homes.

Provides support to underserved constituency, those students who live off campus.


RFP3-15 Human @MIT ($2,500)

Support a few programs in a series designed to enhance social and professional resources for the departments in the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, including an interdepartmental quiz bowl and debate series.

Provides support for creative effort with potential to serve as model for other departments.


RFP3-16 Institutionalizing Graduate Public Service at MIT ($13,891)

Develop a collaborative system for supporting Graduate Student Volunteer Day (GSVD) that can also serve as a model for other institutional graduate student enterprises. This includes sharing information and celebrating achievements as well as increasing resources for graduate student involvement in public service through fellowships, grants, and the IDEAS award.

Creates infrastructure for important service activity that has proven track record of success.


RFP3-17 Integrated Career Mentorship Program ($5,000)

Establish a program for graduate students based on the concepts of the pilot MentorConnection, including networking opportunities for students to meet working professionals and skill building seminars for students to develop key professional intelligence for future successes.

Provides additional mentoring services for graduate students.


RFP3-18 Mathematics Dinners with Faculty ($850)

Provide opportunities for first year graduate students to get to know faculty better through informal small group settings (“invite a faculty member to dinner”).

Provides support for departmental activity with potential to serve as a model for others.


RFP3-19 Mediawomen Dinner Series ($2,125)

Provide funding to develop what has been a pilot program for women in the Media Lab to socialize, offer support, and provide a venue for discussing what it means to be a woman in academics.

Supports existing program with potential to serve as model for others who wish to support women in the academy.


RFP3-23 Object Lessons: Sociable Encounters at the MIT Museum with Unique “Stuff” ($6,630)

Develop a new two year series of programs for graduate students in which the curator of a collection will present a unique object for students to consider and then discuss, followed by a reception in the MIT Museum.

Creates broader awareness of the multifaceted nature of the museum and how it enriches the existing community.


RFP3-24 Physics Pride ($4,000)

Continue sponsorship of the department’s community building efforts to include expanded orientation and Graduate Student Council activities.

Provides support to project with potential to serve as model for other departments.


RFP3-25 Place, Technology, and Space ($3,000)

Support some programs in the series designed to enhance social and professional resources for the departments in the School of Architecture and Planning, specifically monthly talks and social events.

Supports departmental efforts toward building community that might serve as model for others.


RFP3-26 The Police@ MIT ($12,000)

Underwrite the efforts of the Community Policing Unit to work with the graduate community, particularly the international community, to better understand needs and expectations and enable students to live more safely, securely, socially, and comfortably while at MIT. This effort includes surveys, educational programs, a safety fair, and meetings with individual student organizations.

Supports healthier communications between campus police and the graduate community.


RFP3-27 President’s Round Table ($3,750)

Provide a monthly forum for key officers of on campus graduate residences as well as off campus representatives to meet for training and discussion regarding issues of importance in the residences.

Promotes opportunities for identifying and addressing issues faced by graduate students in their residences.


RFP3-28 Random Grad Student Dinners ($4,000)

Plan and implement a series of random graduate student dinners, modeled after the highly successful random faculty dinners hosted by Professor Jay Keyser, to connect graduate students from diverse departments and constituencies.

Provides unique venue for conversations about issues critical to graduate student life.


RFP3-29 “Ready all…” ($3,100)

Plan and implement Spring Sprints, a water- and land-relay competition for students organized by the MIT Boat Club.

Promotes camaraderie among graduate students in unique sports venue.


RFP3-31 Sand Mandala ($2,500)

Complete the five stages in the construction of a Sand Mandala in a public space at MIT, where viewers can observe the process and learn about this ancient art form of Tibetan Buddhism.

Provides unique opportunity for MIT community to learn more about the basic values in Buddhist teaching; contributes toward building a more compassionate community.


RFP3-32 Sustainable Development Mixer ($2,025)

Building on successful precedents, coordinate a social mixer that will include student groups, administrative organizations, and other individuals interested in sustainable development.

Opens channels of communication and provides the spark for brighter ideas and meaningful projects.