Educational Programs

The MRSEC Center has a strong commitment to education and public engagement.

Educational Outreach Overview

The Early College and Career Awareness Program in the Cambridge public schools brings the city's seventh-grade students to Harvard to learn about college education from faculty and students. MRSEC-associated faculty each give a short demonstration of some interesting research results to help inspire interest in materials research.

Science and Cooking event image
Harvard hosted its first ever "Top Chef" competition, as part of Science and Cooking: From Haute Cuisine to Soft Condensed Matter, now in its sixth year as a highly popular undergraduate course at Harvard. Created and taught by Michael Brenner and David Weitz.

Public Lectures: MRSEC faculty and researchers give Science and Cooking lectures annually. Each year, the MRSEC co-sponsors a holiday science lecture for families. The 2017 lecture was again a collaboration between the Harvard and Princeton MRSECs, led by Professor Howard Stone.

College and Pre-College Activities (Elementary and Middle School):
Our Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program allows undergraduates to spend ten weeks in the summer doing research in Center Laboratories. Students who are members of underrepresented groups in science and engineering are actively recruited.

The Research Experience for Teachers (RET) program introduces public school teachers to ongoing MRSEC research and develops connections with public schools.

Course Development: Innovation in Science and Engineering: Conference Course (ES-139) at Harvard that explores factors and conditions contributing to innovation in science and engineering; how important problems are found, defined, and solved; roles of teamwork and creativity; and applications of these methods to other endeavors.

Our Postdoctoral Research Fellowship Program for Women and Minorities attracts outstanding candidates to university research.

For a calendar of MRSEC talks and events, please see the events page.