Beaver Works Summer Institute

The Beaver Works Summer Institute is a rigorous four-week engineering program for rising high school seniors from across the country.
Students in the Beaver Works Summer Institute practice steering their self-programmed robotic racecars, a challenge that included using the robots' sensors, programmed to detect a lane marking.
Students in the Beaver Works Summer Institute practice steering their self-programmed robotic racecars, a challenge that included using the robots' sensors, programmed to detect a lane marking.

The MIT Beaver Works Summer Institute (BWSI) is a rigorous, world-class STEM program for talented students who will be entering their senior year in high school. The four-week program teaches STEM skills through project-based, workshop-style courses. Currently, 10 courses led by Lincoln Laboratory technical staff or MIT faculty are offered during July. These courses range from one in which students build a small satellite prototype (CubeSat) to ones in which teams program autonomous vehicles (called RACECARs for Rapid Autonomous Complex Environment Competing Ackermann steering robots). To apply for admission to the summer program, a candidate must take a prerequisite online course that starts in mid-February.

BWSI also offers a STEM program designed for Boston-area middle school students (grades 7 and 8) to learn the same basic concepts and skills that the high school courses cover more in depth. The RACECAR middle school program teaches students to develop code that enables a robotic car to navigate around obstacles in a race course. It runs for the same four weeks in July as the high school program and does not require participation in an online course. The success of the 2019 RACECAR class has led BWSI to begin plans for 2020 middle school courses on designing assistive devices and programming cognitive assistants, much like Amazon's Alexa.

If you would like to participate in BWSI courses or you are a teacher looking for information on adopting a BWSI-like program into your school curriculum, contact us at [email protected].

 

Beaver Works Website