Resource: MIT Educational Studies Program (ESP) (Cambridge, MA)
Website: MIT Educational Studies Program (ESP) (Cambridge, MA)
Organization: MIT Educational Studies Program
Description: The MIT Educational Studies Program (ESP) was created by MIT students in 1957 to make a difference in the community by sharing knowledge and creativity with local high school students. Since then, the program has grown to support more than 3,000 students each year. The original High School Studies Program (HSSP) has been joined by many other enrichment programs, and the agenda changes each year to best suit the community’s needs.

Comments: Contributed by: Educator on 2/12/2004
There are no admissions criteria. While the program is aimed at 7th through 12th grade students, a few students below that grade level are allowed to take classes, on a case by case basis. Usually, the teacher is allowed to make the decision. Students as young as 6 and as early as 2nd grade have been permitted to enroll. Both students and teachers are usually there by active choice, leading to an environment conducive to both learning and getting to know other students.

Contributed by: Parent of Davidson Young Scholar on 2/12/2004
We have participated in this wonderful program for 2 years. The courses vary according to teaching ability as all of the teachers are volunteers, but the students are vociferous with their impressions and the courses usually improve. The teachers do have energy and love their topics. Also, if you don't like your course, you can change in the first couple of weeks if there's room in another choice. We have never had a problem enrolling, despite our child's young age, and the high schoolers and teachers have been kind and engaging. It is also a very affordable way to provide enrichment, and MIT is such a great resource for kids to explore. There are Spring and Summer sessions.

Contributed by: Parent of Davidson Young Scholar on 2/12/2004
Overall my daughter enjoyed the MIT HSSP program this spring (2001). Classes vary considerably based on the MIT undergrad student who has volunteered to teach the course. One of the two classes my daughter took was very organized and the teachers were dependable and well-prepared. The other course was not as organized and the teacher was not as dependable. However, the price is very reasonable and even if only half the courses fit your expectations, in my opinion, it is still worth doing. Courses can be dropped and a student may sign up for a different class several weeks into the program. Although my daughter is a young student for this program, I found that the teachers accorded her questions as much respect as those of students several years her senior.

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