Ian A. Waitz
Dean of Engineering
The seeds of future breakthroughs germinate as often in MIT's classrooms or dorms as in our labs. Whether an idea originates with a class project, like the MIT Hyperloop team, or comes from a social need identified by students, like Lean on Me, or stems from new technologies, like KitCube, innovation is baked into our community.
Even the confirmation of gravitational waves—the two-toned blip heard around the world—by colleagues in the School of Science and at Caltech began as a discussion in an MIT class several decades ago.
From the day they step on campus, our student innovators are not afraid to go after the hardest problems. The ones that might take a miracle (or two) to realize, like practical fusion and quantum computing. Challenges that require years of dedication without a dollar in sight. Problems where there’s never going to be “an app for that.”
We need to up our game in kind, so we are investing in our students. The launch of the MIT Sandbox Innovation Fund Program is a big step toward helping any interested student develop the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to be successful innovators and entrepreneurs (while here at MIT, and for the rest of their lives).
Add a bit of seed money and a network of savvy mentors, and our students will tell us where the next great breakthroughs will happen in science, engineering—and anything else they set their minds to.
A new aerospace for innovation
Startup bringing driverless taxi service to Singapore
The thinnest solar cell yet
Algorithm warns of rogue waves
Scalable quantum computing
The search for Aedes aegypti
Learning to think like an engineer
Why some cancer cells withstand treatment
Novel app empowers MIT maker community