Roadmap of Entrepreneurship Resources Available To MIT Students
This document is intended to serve as a coordinated listing of entrepreneurship resources available to MIT students. Questions or additional resources may be submitted to the Office of the Chancellor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MIT offers a number of classes focused on establishing and cultivating entrepreneurial skills. View a listing of subjects (PDF) with an entrepreneurial focus.
Entrepreneurship activities occur in a wide range of centers, labs and organizations throughout MIT. Below, we list centers that include opportunities for students to engage in entrepreneurial activities: as part of ongoing research through UROP, through student initiated projects, or other opportunities.
D-Lab fosters the development of appropriate technologies and sustainable solutions within the framework of international development. Its mission is to improve the quality of life of low-income households through the creation and implementation of low cost technologies.
Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation
The Deshpande Center provides a sustainable source of funding for innovative research and guidance to help it reach the marketplace. The Center supports a wide range of emerging technologies including biotechnology, biomedical devices, information technology, new materials, tiny tech, and energy innovations.
Global Entrepreneurship Lab (G-Lab)
G-Lab is the flagship international internship course at MIT Sloan. It links teams of MIT Sloan MBA students with entrepreneurs in emerging markets in more than 20 countries around the world. Students collaborate with global entrepreneurs to share their knowledge, experience, and research and assist them with immediate challenges in areas as diverse as internationalization, commercialization, finance, and marketing.
Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship
The Legatum Center administers programs and convenes events that promote and shape discourse on bottom-up development. The Center runs a highly competitive fellowship program for MIT students who intend to launch enterprises in low-income countries. It also convenes an annual conference, hosts lectures, and supports teams of enterprising men and women at MIT who are passionate about starting viable businesses in the developing world.
Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship
The Trust Center for Entrepreneurship provides content, context, and contacts that enable entrepreneurs to design and launch successful new ventures based on innovative technologies. It helps MIT students, alumni, and colleagues access an array of educational programs, networking opportunities, technologies, and resources, both at MIT and around the world. The Trust Center distributes a weekly newsletter containing events and opportunities in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Sign up to receive the newsletter.
Mechanical Engineering Manufacturing Shop and Project Engineering Laboratories
MechE's Manufacturing Shop and Project Engineering Laboratories are predominantly teaching and research shops, but are open to graduate and undergraduate students who have been approved to use them. They are filled with lathes, milling machines, sanders, drill presses, and other equipment.
The MIT Media Lab applies an unorthodox research approach to envision the impact of emerging technologies on everyday life—technologies that promise to fundamentally transform our most basic notions of human capabilities. Lab researchers foster a unique culture of learning by doing, developing technologies that empower people to design and invent new possibilities.
MIT Enterprise Forum (MITEF)
MITEF is the preeminent organization of entrepreneurs in the global innovation economy. It is dedicated to strengthening technology clusters globally so that the innovation economy can grow and bring new and interesting technologies and innovation into the marketplace. Through a network of chapters worldwide, MITEF produces 400+ events, activities, and workshops annually to connect, inspire, and inform technology entrepreneurs, business leaders, and enthusiasts.
Venture Mentoring Services (VMS)
VMS supports entrepreneurial activity throughout the MIT community by matching prospective entrepreneurs with skilled volunteer mentors. It provides assistance across a broad range of business activity, including product development, marketing, intellectual property law, finance, human resources, and founders issues.
The Edgerton Center supports student teams in engineering competitions, offers hand-on classes and workshop space, and engages students in service projects in developing countries through D-Lab and the International Development Initiative. Outside of MIT the Center is active in advancing kindergarten to 12th grade hands-on STEM education.
Gordon-MIT Engineering Leadership Program
The Gordon-MIT Engineering Leadership Program fosters new approaches that prepare the nation’s young engineering leaders for productive and effective careers in engineering companies. It continues MIT’s rich, innovative tradition of engineering leadership.
The Lemelson-MIT Program is dedicated to honoring the acclaimed and unsung heroes who have helped improve our lives through invention. It inspires and encourages great inventors through various outreach programs such as Lemelson-MIT InvenTeams, a non-competitive, team-based national grants initiative for high school students. The cornerstone of the Program is a prestigious awards program that includes the $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize.
NextLab is a hands-on design course in which students research, develop, and deploy mobile technologies for the next billion mobile users in developing countries. Guided by real-world needs as observed by local partners, students work in multidisciplinary teams on term-long projects, closely collaborating with NGOs and communities at the local level, field practitioners, and experts in relevant fields.
TechLink is a resource that supports graduate student collaboration and innovation through events and networking opportunities. It hosts and creates events that link students across all disciplines not only with each other, but alumni and professional networks as well.
Undergraduate Practice Opportunities Program (UPOP)
UPOP is a year-long, for-credit program for sophomores. Students receive professional development training, mentoring by MIT alums and access to top internships in industry, government, and non-profit enterprises around the world. It is an introduction to “firm skills”: the knowledge, tools and cognitive models that MIT students need to translate their “hard” science, math, and engineering talent and training into thriving careers of their own design.
Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP)
UROP cultivates and supports research partnerships between MIT undergraduates and faculty. Students participate in each phase of standard research activity: developing research plans, writing proposals, conducting research, analyzing data and presenting research results in oral and written form.
Making and Designing Materials Engineering Contest (MADMEC)
MADMEC is a joint venture between the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Saint Gobain, BP, and the Dow Chemical Company. MADMEC challenges teams of students to design and build prototypes that address a variety of energy, environmental, or habitat issues through the use of materials science. The competition empowers students to shape the future of energy, while giving them an opportunity to practice and develop their creative design and engineering skills.
MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition
The MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition is the leading business plan competition in the world. The competition encourages students and researchers to act on their talent, ideas, and energy to produce tomorrow’s leading firms. Entirely student-managed, the competition has produced hundreds of successful ventures that have created value and employment.
MIT Clean Energy Prize
The Clean Energy Prize is a competition sponsored by NSTAR and the US Department of Energy is the leading student-run, student-focused energy business-plan competition in the country. It encourages productive relationships between academic, community, industry, and government organizations with strong interests in meeting the world’s energy challenges through innovation and entrepreneurship.
MIT IDEAS Global Challenge
The MIT IDEAS Global Challenge, a program of the Public Service Center, is an annual invention and entrepreneurship competition that awards up to $10,000 per team for innovative service projects that positively impact underserved communities.
X Prize Lab @ MIT
The X Prize Lab engages students and faculty in designing and studying prizes to incentivize major feats of innovation. Activities include teaching graduate level classes on the intersection of incentives and innovation, researching the role of prizes in fostering technological and social breakthroughs, and engaging students and faculty in design of new X Prize challenges
The Beehive Cooperative is a community specifically designed for MIT student teams working on startup ideas. It offers an open central floor plan with lots of room for collaboration and event hosting, while also providing lots of private space in the form of conference rooms and offices, and serves as a location for educational events related to entrepreneurship.
StartLabs is a non-profit created out of the ideas of collegiate entrepreneurship. Its goal is to catalyze engineering students to bring technical innovations to society through entrepreneurship by having them start their own companies and work in rapidly expanding companies.
TIMtalks presents powerful ideas by passionate students. These ideas are stories of imitative, success, and lessons learned from failure. It’s an opportunity for students to talk about what they do, why they do it, and what they have learned by doing and reflecting.
MIT Electronics Research Society (MITERS)
MITERS is MIT’s only student-run shop. It is a self-described “hackerspace” and project laboratory where MIT students and community members are free to build anything that comes to mind. The Society embodies the inventive and creative spirit of MIT by letting students freely access resources such as tools, equipment, materials, and knowledge to pursue their interests.
Sloan Business Club (SBC)
SBC provides members with an extensive selection of educational events, an expansive business network, and a solid mentorship base, enabling students to fully utilize their academic backgrounds in launching strong business careers.
Venture Capital and Private Equity Club (VCPE)
VCPE is provides its members with opportunities to learn about the venture capital and private equity industries, to interact with leading professional investors and business executives, and to develop relationships with members of the MIT community who share similar interests. It hosts a broad portfolio of activities which span venture capital, private equity, entrepreneurship, and the commercialization of MIT technologies.
Founders’ Skills Accelerator
The Founders’ Skills Accelerator gives MIT student teams the opportunity to make significant progress on a startup idea during the summer months, without leaving MIT, and get money in the process. Selected teams are given dedicated desk space, a specialized educational program, and access to a network of mentors. An advisory committee keeps teams on track with simulated board meetings throughout the summer. Eligible MIT team members can also receive $1,000/month stipends.
Mass Challenge is a three-month accelerator program and startup competition with a focus on mentorship. It offers about $1 million in cash awards and $4 million in in-kind support.
Tech Stars is a highly selective startup accelerator that provides seed funding from venture capital firms and angel investors. It also provides mentorship opportunities. It offers $18k in seed funding and an optional $100k convertible debt note.
Singapore University of Technology and Design—MIT International Design Centre (SUTD-IDC)
The IDC intends to become the world’s premier scholarly hub for technologically intensive design. The IDC is built upon a foundation focused on innovations for societal needs, intellectual merit, and leaders for an innovation-based economy.
The mission of Skoltech is to educate students, advance knowledge, and foster innovation in order to address critical scientific, technological, and innovation challenges and gaps facing Russia and the world. Innovation and entrepreneurship are central to the initiative's goals.
Startup Bootcamp is a free one-day annual event that features key figures in the high-tech startup industry sharing personal experiences in the startup industry and offering perspectives about issues that most high-tech startups face.
t=0 is a weeklong event celebrating innovation and entrepreneurship at MIT. Its aim is to celebrate, support and develop makers, creators, inventors, engineers, developers, and hackers who will be future entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurial Impact: The Role of MIT - February 2009 (PDF)