CIS’s outreach extends to the MIT and Greater Boston communities, as well as to policymakers in Washington, D.C.
On campus, the MIT Japan Program sponsors weekly lunches where MIT-affiliates, including spouses and children, can practice speaking English, and where non-native speakers can practice their Japanese. The MIT Germany program organizes a weekly lunch, “Stammtisch,” where German speakers congregate. During the Independent Activities Period (IAP) each January, these and other MISTI programs organize classes on the cultures of MISTI countries, including the always over-subscribed class on French and Italian cheeses.
Local high school history students can be seen on campus on days when CIS Starr Forums are held. These juniors and seniors come prepared for a pre-forum seminar—led by a CIS-affiliated graduate student—on the topic of the day, and are invited to participate in the forum Q&A. On occasion, the students also meet forum speakers.
The Center also is a destination for college and graduate students from all over the Boston area. Students from Boston University, The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Harvard University, Tufts University and Wellesley College join MIT students for seminars organized by the Inter-University Committee on International Migration, a program hosted by CIS’s program on International Migration. In addition, students from Greater Boston come to the Center for International Studies to participate in a number of working groups, including the joint Harvard-MIT group on humanitarian intervention, and groups and conferences organized by the Security Studies Program (SSP) and the Program in Human Rights & Justice (PHRJ).
In Washington, D.C., CIS has for more than 15 years provided an educational program on foreign policy, political economy and international relations for senior military officers, government officials, and executives in non-governmental organizations. The Seminar XXI Program has provided more than 1,000 of these leaders with a monthly opportunity to step away from their jobs to discuss critical policy issues, and to hear a range of views from distinguished guest speakers.