From researching assistive technologies at Politecnico di Milano in Italy to exploring biomaterials for regenerative therapies at the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia in Spain, the fellows supported by the partnership between the MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives (MISTI) and the MIT European Club (Euro-Club) are tackling the world's challenges through experiential learning and international collaboration.
The Euro-Club, which comprises MIT students dedicated to creating a European community on campus and fostering cross-cultural collaborations between the Institute and Europe, has contributed more than $200,000 to MISTI over the past decade.
“The partnership between MISTI and the European Club is truly unique,” says Erin Schenck, managing director of MISTI’s MIT-Germany, MIT-Netherlands, and MIT-Switzerland (German-speaking) programs. “Nowhere else on campus is there a student group giving back on an annual basis.”
Thanks to the Euro-Club’s sponsorship, MISTI — which specializes in matching students with hands-on projects across the globe — has been able to organize 42 additional projects in nine European countries.
“The model is mutually beneficial,” Schenck explains. “MISTI connects top industry partners with the European Career Fair, and the club pledges a portion of the proceeds to support internship opportunities.”
For the European Career Fair (ECF), which is held annually on the MIT campus, MISTI has helped connect the Euro-Club to such companies as Daimler, Continental, BMW, Lufthansa, and Festo through the partnership.
“The ECF is an extremely useful resource for European companies seeking talent at MIT and for MISTI programs seeking to consolidate their company partnerships,” says Serenella Sferza, co-director of MISTI’s MIT-Italy Program. “With the Italian economy finally on the mend, I’m looking forward to taking better advantage of this opportunity.”
The ECF connects top-tier MIT students and young professionals with companies, universities, and nonprofit organizations across Europe. Anna-Maria Karl, head of global talent sourcing at Daimler, shares her experience at the 2017 ECF: “We took part in the ECF for the second time this year. We were really impressed by the excellent organization of the event and the quality of the candidates.” By working together to attract European companies and to send MIT students abroad, MISTI and the Euro-Club hope to further the Institute’s connections with the region.
This year’s MISTI-Euro Club projects include:
- Exploring art preservation and advanced restoration technologies at the Museo Egizio in Torino, Italy.
- Investigating the underlying principles of nucleic acid evolution to generate novel compounds at the University of Bonn Medical School in Germany.
- Mapping the ocean floor at ENSTA Bretagne in France.
- Participating in the IronFEMME project with the Faculty of Sciences of Physical Activity and Sport at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid in Spain to investigate the influences of the menstrual cycle on the iron metabolism after exercise and on muscle damage produced after strength training.
- Studying Raman Spectrology at the Université Savoie Mont Blanc in France.
- Exploring the intersection between neuroscience and linguistics at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in the Netherlands.
Each year, MISTI matches nearly 1,000 students with internship, research, and teaching opportunities at leading companies, research institutes, and universities around the world. Based in the Center for International Studies at the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences (SHASS), MISTI is MIT’s pioneering international education initiative and features a broad array of European programs: MIT-Belgium, MIT-France, MIT-Germany, MIT-Italy, MIT-Netherlands, MIT-Portugal, MIT-Spain, MIT-Switzerland, and MIT-UK.
The Euro-Club is a student activity club of 300 postdocs, graduate students, undergraduates, and visiting scientists. The club’s current executive board members are President Giulio Alighieri, Vice President Susanna Bachle, Secretary Katrin Michel, Treasurer Xiaoyu Wu, and Communication Chair Karine Ip.