The Burchard Scholars Program 
Expand your horizons at dinner seminars with distinguished MIT faculty

The Student Application deadline is November 29, 2022.
Program open to MIT sophomores and juniors.


Expand Your Horizons at Dinner Seminars with Distinguished Faculty

The Burchard Scholars Program brings together distinguished members of the faculty and promising MIT sophomores and juniors who have demonstrated excellence in some aspect of the humanities, arts, or social sciences. About 35 MIT undergraduates are selected each year for the competitive program. Each cohort of "Burchards" participates for one calendar year, from February through December.

The format is a series of dinner seminars that reflect the vast range of inquiry and research in the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Science. The Burchard Program consists of eight events throughout a calendar year. Seminars are held monthly, on Wednesday evenings from 5-7pm, during the school year. 


Application Information


The Burchard Scholars application must include the following materials:

  • Curriculum Vitae or résumé
  • List of HASS classes you have taken at MIT
  • A letter of recommendation from a Faculty member who has taught you in a HASS course (to be submitted no later than the application deadline)
  • An essay on one of three essay topics in less than 500 words:
    • If you could require every incoming MIT student to read one book, or contemplate one work of art, or listen to one piece of music, what would it be and why?
    • "Great ideas change the world.” In your essay, personalize the SHASS motto by addressing the following question: How have one or two “great ideas” changed you and your views of “the world”?
    • Write about an experience in which you encountered a tension between personal freedom and community standards. Discuss the experience and the underlying issues, how you dealt with the tension, and whether or not there was a satisfactory resolution.

Students submit applications online here. You are expected to contact your HASS Faculty referee and submit their letter of reference via the application form. You should supply them copies of your résumé and your list of HASS subjects. Please allow your referees time to do their job!

If you have a question about the program or how to apply, please email


Information on the Burchard Program

Burchard Events
Past Burchard Scholars



Congratulations to the 2021 Burchard Scholars!


Hillary Diane Andales, sophomore


Gabriella Aponte, sophomore

Chemistry and Biology


Prosser Cathey, junior

Mathematical Economics + Political Science


Alana Chandler, junior

Materials Science and Engineering


Curtis Chen, sophomore

Computation and Cognition


Laura Chen, junior

Biological Engineering


Maggie Chen, junior

Brain and Cognitive Sciences


Claire Cheng, junior

Computer Science and Engineering + Music and Theater Arts


Zachary Chin, junior

Chemistry + Electrical Engineering and Computer Science


Pedro Colon, sophomore

Chemistry and Biology


Ryan Conti, sophomore



Amelia Dogan, sophomore

Urban Science and Planning with Computer Science + Humanities: American Studies


Rujul Gandhi, junior

Linguistics and Philosophy + Electrical Engineering and Computer Science


Swapnil Garg, junior



Stacy Godfreey-Igwe, junior

Engineering + Humanities: African & African Diaspora Studies


Ananya Gurumurthy, sophomore



Emily Huang, junior

Electrical Engineering and Computer Science + Political Science


Ibuki Iwasaki, junior

Art and Design


Sahithi Madireddy, sophomore



Naomi Michael, junior



Isha Mehrotra, junior



Karna Morey, junior



Rajiv Movva, junior

Computer Science and Engineering


Atharv Oak, sophomore

Computer Science and Molecular Biology


Vaishnavi Phadnis, junior



David Spicer, sophomore

Political Science + Philosophy


Kathryn Tso, junior

Materials Science and Engineering


Max Williamson, junior

Computer Science and Engineering


Kelly Wu, junior

Chemical Engineering


Westley Wu, sophomore

Chemistry and Biology


Megan Xu, junior

Biological Engineering


Jeffery Yu, junior

Mathematics + Physics


Daniel Zhang, junior



Diane Zhang, sophomore

Computer Science and Molecular Biology


Julian Zulueta, sophomore

Biological Engineering