In the MIT School of Engineering, we believe that engineering is a creative and collaborative endeavor in which the best solutions arise from a rich diversity of perspectives, discussion, and inquiry. We are committed to increasing diversity by fostering a community of opportunity and by providing the intellectual stimulation of a diverse school and campus environment, both in the classroom and where we work and live.
The MIT Introduction to Technology, Engineering, and Science (MITES) has developed and implemented a range of outreach programs and services to provide access to the intellectual stimulation of our campus community to a younger audience. These programs work with middle and high school students, including those from underrepresented segments, to equip them to enter and succeed in postsecondary engineering education. Their programs include Minority Introduction to Engineering and Science, MIT Online Science, Technology, and Engineering Community, and the Saturday Engineering Enrichment and Discovery Academy. There are a range of other K–12 STEM outreach programs across the MIT School of Engineering, including the Women’s Technology Program the Lemelson-MIT InvenTeams Program.
The MIT School of Engineering has made steady progress in recruiting and retaining faculty, students, and staff that have been traditionally underrepresented in engineering. Yet there is still much to be done as we continue to build a diverse and inclusive community.
The MIT School of Engineering’s departments, labs, and centers have reaffirmed their pledge to pursue the recommendations from MIT’s “Report on the Initiative for Faculty Race and Diversity.” The goal of the work is to yield long-term positive change in the MIT environment, to improve the climate at MIT for minority faculty and all faculty with regard to matters of race and ethnicity, and to ultimately achieve long-standing and sustainable increases in overall numbers of underrepresented minority faculty members in order to realize the benefits of diversity in education.
The School of Engineering Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Strategic Plan (PDF), released in 2023, provides an overview of school-wide structures, activities, programs and people, and school-wide metrics related to DEI.
Ongoing Priorities & Goals for the MIT School of Engineering
Goal 1: Create and support an environment where students, staff, postdoctoral scholars, and faculty are able to thrive.
Goal 2: Develop metrics to appropriately assess the School of Engineering’s progress towards its diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.
Goal 3: Foster an equitable and inclusive learning environment for all students.
Goal 4: Seek to increase the number of faculty, staff, and students from underrepresented groups in engineering by establishing, maintaining, and investing in programs, groups, and initiatives that broaden participation.
A range of government agencies provide additional resources for students and/or employees who have concerns of sexual misconduct or other forms of gender discrimination. Among those agencies, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) provides informational materials on civil rights compliance and equal opportunity in programs receiving NASA grants and other federal financial assistance.
In an effort to help students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics gain greater awareness of their rights under civil rights laws such as Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, NASA has provided the following documents to better inform and assist students (as well as administrators and faculty), in understanding and executing their rights, roles, and responsibilities under the law:
- Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity in NASA Assisted Programs: Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Related Laws
- Equal Opportunity in NASA Assisted Programs
- Title IX and STEM: Promising Practices
- Title IX and STEM: A Guide for Conducting Title IX Self-Evaluations
The School of Engineering has a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee, a Faculty Gender Equity Committee, and a Staff Advice and Implementation Committee. The School has made a deep commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, and aims to enable and foster a deeply inclusive, respectful and caring community, where each community member feels enabled and supported to thrive and contribute fully.
Visit the websites for MIT’s Institute Community and Equity Office (ICEO), and Institute Discrimination and Harassment Response Office (IDHR) for more resources and information on these topics.