What is Beaver Works?

Beaver Works is a joint venture between MIT Lincoln Laboratory and the MIT School of Engineering that is envisioned as an incubator for research and innovation. Beaver Works facilitates project-based learning, a hallmark of an MIT education, and leverages the expertise and enthusiasm of MIT faculty, students, researchers, and Lincoln Laboratory staff to broaden partnerships with MIT campus and students.

The Beaver Works center located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, provides these facilities: areas for collaborative brainstorming; workshops and tools for fabricating prototype systems; and space for classroom-style instruction. Beaver Works allows students to address real-world problems and issues, engages students in hands-on learning, and demonstrates an effective strategy for teaching complex engineering concepts.

Beaver Works supports MIT student involvement in a range of research and educational pursuits, including two-semester, course-based capstone projects; joint and individual research initiatives; and Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program internships. Students involved in these projects develop innovative solutions to real-world problems and gain an exceptional experience in hands-on learning from world-class researchers.

In addition to the Summer Institute, Beaver Works is also extending project-based learning opportunities to local K–12 schoolchildren. Among these offerings have been a robotics workshop for an all-girl FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) LEGO League team, a hands-on camera-building activity for high-school girls, and a one-day workshop on radars for students in middle school.