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Everything About Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Everything About Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Total Undergraduate Enrollment: 4,602

Institutional Type: Private

Curricular Flexibility: Somewhat Flexible

Academic Rating: 5

Top Programs



Computer Science






Who Recruits

1. Hudson River Trading

2. Nvidia

3. Five Rings Technology

4. Stripe

5. AB InBev

Notable Internships

1. Jane Street Capital

2. Airbnb

3. Shell

Top Industries

1. Business

2. Engineering

3. Education

4. Research

5. Operations

Top Employers

1. Google

2. Apple

3. Microsoft

4. Amazon

5. IBM

Where Alumni Work

1. Boston

2. San Francisco

3. New York City

4. India

5. Washington, DC

Median Earnings

College Scorecard (Early Career): $104,700

EOP (Early Career): $98,500

PayScale (Mid-Career): $155,200

Inside the Classroom

A beacon of egalitarianism and meritocracy, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is less about legacy and more about the future. MIT doesn’t care who your grandfather was or how far you can throw a football; it is seeking the world’s sharpest and most innovative minds in engineering, the sciences, mathematics, and related fields who, one day, will create the world the rest of us will merely inhabit. Graduate students account for the majority of students enrolled at MIT, but the nearly 4,500 undergraduates pursue one of fifty-three majors and fifty-eight minors in this world-class research institution that continues to be one of the world’s most magnetic destinations for science geniuses.

There are five separate schools within MIT: the School of Architecture and Planning; the School of Engineering; the School of Humanities, Arts, and the Social Sciences; the Sloan School of Management; and the School of Science. There are a number of broad academic requirements across all five schools including an eight-subject humanities, arts, and social sciences requirement and a six-subject science requirement that includes two terms of calculus, two terms of physics, one term of chemistry, and one term of biology. Additionally, students must complete two courses under the designation of “restricted electives” in science and technology, a laboratory requirement, and a physical ducation course.

The student-to-faculty ratio is an astonishing 3-to-1, and even with a substantial focus on graduate programs, the class sizes are intimate. An exceptional 43 percent of class sections have single-digit enrollments, and 70 percent of courses contain fewer than twenty students.

MIT is known for having one of the best formalized undergraduate research programs in the country. The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) operates year-round and helps connect 91 percent of undergrads to a research experience with an MIT faculty member. Studying abroad is strongly encouraged, and the school offers some fantastic opportunities through programs such as MIT Madrid, Imperial College Exchanges(London), and departmental exchange programs in South Africa, France, and Japan.

The highest numbers of degrees conferred last year were in the following majors: computer science and engineering(251), electrical engineering and computer science (161), mathematics (76), and physics (55). Just about every program at MIT sits at or near the top of any rankings. The most sought after employers and grad schools aggressively recruit alumni. Graduates win nationally competitive fellowships and scholarships on a routine basis.

Outside the Classroom

The campus’ 166 acres include twenty-six acres of playing fields, twenty acres of green spaces and gardens, and eighteen student residences that house the 90 percent of students who live on campus, a requirement for freshmen. It may be a bit of a surprise that the school’s thirty-seven fraternities, sororities, and living groups attract 43 percent of male students and 28 percent of females. Around half live in frat/sorority/living group housing, and the other half reside in dorms. Falling victim to stereotypes, one might not immediately assume that MIT would have an athletically inclined student body. However, the school fields thirty-three varsity sports teams (16 women’s, 15 men’s, 2 co-ed),most of which compete in NCAA Division III against other New England colleges. The intramural program is bursting at the seams with over 4,000 participants annually. Another 800 students are members of thirty- three club teams.

Plenty of culture/creativity can be found on campus in one of MIT’s twelve museums and galleries (The MIT Museum draws 150,000 visitors each year). There are also more than sixty arts, dance, music, and writing organizations for students. The school is devoted to environmental sustainability, and the campus and surrounding area are designed for a car-free lifestyle that remains highly convenient. With forty-four bike-sharing stations, six subway stations, and twenty-nine bus routes in the surrounding area, students can navigate Cambridge with ease. Harvard’s campus is less than one mile away, and downtown Boston is easy to reach. For reference, Fenway Park is less than two miles from campus.

Career Services

MIT Global Education & Career Development (GECD) has sixteen professional staff members who are directly involved in employer relations, career counseling, and graduate school advising. That 278:1 student-to-advisor ratio is better than average compared to other schools featured in this guide. The office provides top-notch individualized counseling and also puts on phenomenal large-scale events. The MIT Fall Career Fair is an unmatched event that sees around 450companies and 5,000 students attend. If you can think of a desirable tech/finance company, chances are it has a boot hat the event. Even the less-epic Spring Career Fair attracts seventy employers including Northrup Grumman, Wayfair, Bank of America, the Walt Disney Company, Cisco, and Twitter.

With assistance from the GECD, 87 percent of MIT undergraduates complete at least one internship. Almost one quarter of those participating in internships received a full-time job offer from that same organization. The GECD played a direct role in helping many others land jobs through various means as 20 percent found employment through on-campus recruiting, 19 percent through faculty/GECD connections, and 18 percent through career fairs. In a single year the GECD hosted 130 different employers, which led to a collective 2,609 interviews held on campus. An additional 1,072 employers posted 2,595 unique jobs online in an effort to lure MIT seniors. The office does a world class job of setting up its highly desired undergrads with premium opportunities.

Professional Outcomes

Last year's class saw 54 percent of its members enter the world of employment and 39 percent continue on their educational paths. By industry, the highest percentage of graduates found jobs in engineering (24 percent), computer technologies (23 percent), consulting (14 percent), and finance/banking (14 percent). The top employers included Accenture, Oracle, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, Northrop Grumman, Goldman Sachs, Google, General Motors, the US Navy, Apple, Bain & Company, Boeing, and McKinsey. The mean starting salary for an MIT bachelor’s degree holder was$88,381, and the median was $85,000.

The most frequently attended graduate schools are a who’s who of elite institutions including MIT itself, which accounted for 177 members of the Class with Stanford a distant second, attracting twenty-two graduates. Also making the list were Princeton, California Institute of Technology, Columbia, Northwestern, University of Chicago, University of California at Berkeley, and University of Michigan. The most common degree being pursued was a PhD (43 percent),and the second most common was a master’s of engineering (41 percent). Only 6 percent were entering medical/dental/veterinary school, and 1.6 percent were headed to law school. Medical school acceptance rates typically land in the 80- 95 percent range for grads/alumni, more than double the national average.

Students' Voice: Pros and Cons of Location

Pros of Cambridge, MA

• “The food, not just in Cambridge but also in Boston. The North End has great Italian food and we’re known for lobster rolls.”

• “The airport is right by us and it’s an international airport.”

• “It’s a nice place to be because there’s a lot of Boston pride, which makes it a lot of fun. There is a lot of pride in the sports teams.”

• “You get a city feel but also have enough of a campus that you don’t feel like you’re ingrained in the city because

we’re on the Cambridge side [of the river].”

Cons of Cambridge, MA

• “It’s cold. I know a lot of people take that into account.”

• “MIT’s campus isn’t the prettiest. MIT is more so focused on functionality instead of beauty, so they work on

updating the learning experience instead of the visual experience which I appreciate.”

• “There’s not a ton of nature around us. There’s a little bit, but not as much as I am used to or would like.”

Students' Voice: Reasons to attend and not to attend

To Attend

• “The name. You come out with people understanding what kind of education you went through and how much work you had to do to get that degree, so you get an extra level of respect.”

• “If you’re a collaborative learner, you’ll do well here.”

• “It’s a ridiculously diverse, eclectic group of kids who are high achieving and, for the most part, non-judgmental.”

• “You can start doing research freshman fall when you arrive on campus.”

• “The resources you have access to are ridiculous and they really want you to use them. The resources, like career development, really want you to succeed.”

• “The professors here are super interesting and brilliant people. If you have a question about something, they’ll usually make time to see you and that’s exciting because they’re the best in their field. I had one of the leading experts on the archaeology of the Great Pyramids spend like an hour trying to explain to me how geopolymers work, and he did not need to do that.”

To Not Attend

• “If you don’t want to work, it’s not going to work out. If you have any sense of laziness or are disorganized, you’re going to struggle here and you might regret the decision.”

• “Relative to other schools, socially it might be a letdown. I think it’s a wonderful combination of work and play, but for people who are expecting more play, they may be disappointed.”

• “If you don’t handle adversity well. If you’re not a person who can get a bad grade on a test and know to ramp up their studying for the next five weeks before the next test, this won’t be the place for you. MIT teaches you to respond to adversity, but there are a few bumps you have to get over first, like your first bad test grade or bad problem set grade.”

• “It can seem like everyone around you is getting everything really quickly. If you are someone who is not really confident in yourself and in your work, it can feel like you’re constantly the dumbest one in the room when in reality everyone else is feeling that as well. People really try to hide if they don’t know something here, which can have a negative impact on mental health.”

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