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Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is an independent, coeducational, privately endowed, research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.


Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is an independent, coeducational, privately endowed, research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States. The QS World University Rankings 2022 placed MIT as the number one university in the world.

MIT researchers are at the forefront of developments in a range of fields, including artificial intelligence, climate adaptation, HIV, cancer, poverty alleviation,and clean energy. MIT research is responsible for many scientific breakthroughs, such as the development of radar, the invention of magnetic core memory, and the concept of the expanding universe.

MIT is organized into five schools:

  • Architecture and planning
  • Engineering
  • Humanities, arts, and social sciences
  • Management
  • Science

The university features degree-granting programs, laboratories, and thirty departments where students can earn bachelor's, master's, and doctorates degrees. The university offers fifty-four undergraduate majors programs and fifty-eight undergraduate minor programs with courses offered around the world and available online.

Selected honors of current and former MIT community members include the following:

  • Ninety-five Nobel Laureates
  • Seventy-seven MacArthur Fellows
  • Fifty-nine National Medal of Science winners
  • Twenty-nine National Medal of Technology and Innovation winners
  • Fifteen A. M. Turing Award winners

There have been over 26,000 spinout companies from MIT.


Two days before the start of the American Civil War, MIT was founded on April 10, 1861, when it was granted its official charter by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The idea for MIT originated from William Barton Rogers (MIT's first president), a professor of natural philosophy at the College of William and Mary. Rogers described his vision for a “new polytechnic institute” in a letter to his brother Henry in 1846 and campaigned for the creation of the Institute, building support and raising funds. The first classes at MIT began in 1865.


MIT originally occupied a rented space on Summer Street in downtown Boston until 1866, when its first building was erected on Boylston Street, in Boston's Back Bay neighborhood. MIT expanded rapidly throughout the Back Bay with buildings throughout Copley Square by the end of the 19th century.

The institute moved to a new campus in Cambridge in June 1916, with just the School of Architecture remaining in Boston until 1938. The date of the move is marked in Roman numerals, MCMXVI, on the dome of Building 10.

The current campus in Cambridge is 168 acres and extends for more than a mile along the Charles River basin. The campus features ninteen student residences, twelve museums and galleries, twenty-six acres of playing fields, and over sixty public works of art. It features landmarks designed by architects Alvar Aalto, Frank Gehry, and Steven Hollin.

The campus merges with various Cambridge neighborhoods, including Kendall Square, an area that has launched more than 30,000 active companies.

Notable Alumni
  • Buzz Aldrin
  • Ilene S Gordon
  • Richard Feynman
  • Jonah Peretti
  • Shirley Ann Jackson
  • Robin Chase
  • Kofi Annan
  • Katharine McCormick
  • Michael J Massimino
  • Andrea Wong
  • Charles Koch
  • Salman Khan
  • Drew Houston
  • Arash Ferdowsi
  • Ivan Getting
  • Ben Bernanke
  • John Thain
  • Amar Bose
  • Benjamin Netanyahu
  • John Potter
  • John W Thompson
  • Brian Halligan
  • Bill Hewlett
  • IM Pei
  • Lorenzo Mendoza

Since the outbreak of COVID-19 (coronavirus), MIT has looked to manufacture and deploy low-cost ventilators to alleviate the high demand that hospitals have, due to the virus. Medical ventilators typically cost $30,000; however, students and faculty from MIT have designed a simple ventilator that can be built with $100 worth of parts. These ventilators would require a nurse to perform hand operation techniques to keep the patient breathing.

The university is supporting an all-volunteer team that is working without funding and who are operating anonymously. Their primary focus is on patient safety and designing ventilators to meet clinical functional requirements.


June 1916
MIT campus moves from the Back Bay, Boston, to Cambridge, Massachusetts
April 10, 1861
MIT was founded by William Barton Rogers

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Further Resources


Education | MIT - Massachusetts Institute of Technology


MIT-based team works on rapid deployment of open-source, low-cost ventilator

David L. Chandler | MIT News Office


March 26, 2020

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)


Ventilators are in high demand for Covid-19 patients. How do they work?


March 30, 2020


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