The x-terms program is built to ensure students and companies alike benefit from a longer relationship than is usually seen in summer internships. We want students to gain practical experience, contribute to longer-term projects, and learn more about local companies—all while remaining students and engaging in upper-level MIT classes. As a result, we expect companies to provide not just a job, but also an educational experience that fits in with a student's academic courseload.
By combining industry with academics, x-terms is a unique program at MIT. We are separate from other career development offices at MIT, and we do not match students with specific companies. Instead, we provide a platform so that top students can find the appropriate hybrid internships that fit their needs.
Why host an x-terms student for a semester-long internship?
Our students are highly qualified and selected based on their academic and industry readiness; only x-terms students (and not other MIT students) have been screened for part-time work. In particular, hosting an x-term student provides employers with:
- An MIT student contributing work for an entire semester
- A qualified junior/senior with previous internship experience
- The chance of the internship leading into a summer/full-time role
What is expected of an employer?
- Designing a high-quality and part-time internship experience with a well defined project
The internship should be paid and designed for an x-term student in mind. A part-time internship will usually be 10-35 hours. In particular, students are advised to work around 25 hours a week if simultaneously taking 2 MIT classes, and 35 hours a week if taking 1 MIT class.
We do not specify a minimum hourly wage, but we recommend that companies offer market rate to stay competitive with other participating firms. MIT publishes various metrics on student pay.
- Finding an MIT alum to mentor and advise the student(s)
We recommend that every x-term student is directly advised by an MIT alum on their project. Based on previous examples, we have seen that such relationships are beneficial for both the student and the company, and generally lead to better outcomes.
In cases where an MIT alum cannot directly advise the student on the project, the employer must still find an MIT alum in the organization to serve as a mentor. This could be someone in another department, a co-founder, or someone else. Questions about the policy can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Offering flexibility for students commuting to and from the MIT campus
- Accommodating students for the MIT schedule, including student holidays
How does the hiring process work?
We are not a job matching service. We recognize that companies and students do best when companies run their own interviews and hiring process.
As a result, we instead ask employers to provide job descriptions for their specific x-term positions by the end of March. Our pool of talented x-term students then apply, and companies are asked to interview and make hiring decisions by late spring for fall internships. Companies are not obligated to fill all their x-term positions. This ensures a streamlined process for both companies and students.
How does the MIT alum representative work?
As described above
, every company needs an MIT alum representative to mentor the x-term student and preferably supervise them on their project. We believe this improves the quality of the experience for the student and ensures a lasting relationship.
Any employee of the company can fill out the initial company application
. However, we ask that employers provide the name of the MIT alum representative. If this creates any difficulties, please reach out
Additional Policies & Resources
For policies on timely communication, exploding offers, nondiscrimination, and confidentiality, we recommend employers become familiar with MIT's general recruiting policies
. For information on recruiting at MIT outside of x-terms, contact GECD at email@example.com
All internships must be paid, and we advise employers to consult data from GECD and the Registrar's Office
if they have questions on appropriate offers and hiring practices.
We recommend employers also understand x-terms from the students' perspective by visiting xterms.mit.edu