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MIT & the Community

Service to the Community

Since its founding, MIT has maintained a commitment to be a good neighbor and serve the local community. The Institute actively supports nonprofit organizations that address local challenges by providing financial resources, the use of its facilities, representation on boards and committees, educational programs, and volunteer engagement. In addition, members of the MIT community support the Institute’s Community Service Fund, which provides assistance for nonprofits where MIT volunteers are at work.

Departments, labs, and centers at MIT often create programming to inspire K-12 student interest in science, technology, engineering, and math. The Institute is working to increase awareness of these offerings to local schools and ensure equitable access to these opportunities.

The Institute’s Priscilla King Gray Public Service Center provides programming, guidance, information, and support to students, faculty, and staff interested in public service, and serves as a resource for both MIT and the community at large.

Economic Impact and Innovation Catalyst

MIT has a far-reaching impact on the economy of the region. The Institute is Cambridge’s second largest employer and largest taxpayer, representing 14.9% of the city’s revenue stream. MIT pays taxes on its commercial property and provides an annual voluntary payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT) for property that is used for academic purposes and is legally tax exempt. In fiscal year 2020, the Institute made a PILOT contribution of approximately $2.2 million to the city and paid approximately $65 million in real estate taxes.

The research, startups, and talent pool that MIT generates are a magnet for investment, catalyzing and fueling the local innovation economy. Kendall Square, at the eastern end of MIT’s campus, is the seat of a thriving innovation hub. To provide expanded opportunities in this innovation economy, the Job Connector by MIT was established as a workforce development hub for Cambridge residents to explore opportunities for job readiness, skill training, internships, and apprenticeships. The Institute’s Kendall Square Initiative and Volpe mixed-use development projects will also enhance the life and character of the area by adding over 2.5 million ft2 of retail, office, and residential space and more than four acres of open space. A new Open Space Programming office has been established to help create diverse, vibrant, and inclusive programming in MIT’s Kendall open space—events and activities will be open and inviting to all.