PKG Fellowships

As a PKG Fellow, you can develop and implement a social impact project that you design in collaboration with a community partner.

The deadline to apply for Summer‘24 PKG Fellowships is Wednesday, March 20th, at noon.

Before starting an application, please read the information below. 

Types of social impact work supported by PKG Fellowships

PKG Fellowships typically follow one or more of these models:

Collaborating with a partner in the community on new ideas

If you have a social impact idea you want to implement in collaboration with a community partner—or if a socially-focused organization wants your input as a consultant—a PKG Fellowship can support your endeavor. 

Piloting a social enterprise

If you are developing your own nonprofit or other social enterprise, a PKG Fellowship could enable you to focus on this work for IAP or the summer. You will need to demonstrate that you have strong contacts in the target community who can help ensure that your enterprise truly addresses community needs and opportunities. 

Explore a public service or social impact career

PKG Fellows may also intern with public service or social impact agencies. This option enables you to explore socially- or environmentally-focused careers while contributing your skills.You will need to demonstrate that the internship will contribute meaningfully to the agency’s work and enable you to apply your particular skills and experience. You might help to expand an agency’s services, for instance, or assess operations. 

Undergraduates seeking service internships in the US should first explore the PKG Center’s Social Impact Internships

Graduate students seeking funding for internships in the US should first explore Federal Work Study.

PKG Fellowships can support project-based internships for graduate students and undergraduates whose work would not fit in the Social Impact Internships or Federal Work Study frameworks. 


PKG Fellowships fund both summer and IAP public service work. 

For IAP 2024, all MIT undergraduates are eligible to apply with new or continuing projects.  Graduate students will be eligible to continue social impact work they initiated previously in a PKG Center program, professional setting, or a similar intensive context. 

If in doubt about your eligibility, email or sign-up for one of our drop-in advising sessions.

For the summer, all registered full-time MIT students are eligible to apply and graduating students can receive funding for up to three months after graduation.

Most PKG Fellowships are individual projects but we are sometimes able to support two or three students working together on a project. For group projects, each member must write and submit an individual application.


Fellowship funding is provided upfront as a direct deposit or check, and Fellows typically use the funding to cover living and travel expenses though it may also be applied to project implementation expenses.

General Funding Breakdown:

  • IAP Fellows are awarded $2,500. 
  • For the summer, we offer Blended PKG Fellowships of $6,000 and Focused PKG Fellowships of $7,500.
  • A “Blended PKG Fellowship” is a Fellowship that you do in addition to research work, a UROP, MISTI project, etc. We expect Blended PKG Fellowships to be a significant time commitment equivalent to half time work. 
  • A “Focused PKG Fellowship” must be your primary work focus for the summer and be the equivalent of at least 8 weeks full-time work.

Selection criteria

Successful fellowship proposals will demonstrate:

  • Alignment with the PKG Center’s values
  • The social and/or environmental significance of the work
  • The applicant’s and other stakeholders’ preparedness to undertake the work and to collaborate effectively
  • That the student has applicable skills and experience that will make the work possible
  • That the student has defined their own personal goals and motivations
  • Potential for sustainable benefit to an underserved or marginalized community
  • Appropriate understanding of safety issues and a thorough safety plan

Program requirements

If we award you a fellowship, before beginning your project you will be required to:

  • Sign a contract, liability waiver, and MIT travel forms. Minors will also need the signature of a parent or guardian.
  • Submit a spreadsheet of personal and contact information.
  • Arrange for all necessary health, safety, and legal needs: e.g. passport and visa if needed, health insurance, vaccinations, etc.
  • Arrange all travel and accommodation.

While undertaking the Fellowship, you have to:

  • Check in at least once a week with fellowship staff, describing work accomplished so far, plans for the following week, and general reflections.
  • Ensure that your community partner is supporting the project appropriately and remaining in contact with the Center staff as requested.

Following the Fellowship work, we require you to:

  • Submit a brief report describing your experiences in the field. Alternatively, you can write a project blog during the course of the project.
  • Complete an online evaluation of your fellowship experience.
  • Submit photographs with captions.

We may also ask you to give presentations based on your fieldwork experience to members of the MIT community.


All PKG Fellowship candidates are strongly encouraged to meet with a member of the program staff prior to applying. We can help with questions about eligibility, give feedback on your project idea, give advice on writing the application, and may be able to suggest additional funding sources.

Sign-up for an advising session. Can’t make these times? Contact Alison to schedule an alternative.

The deadline to apply for Summer ‘24 PKG Fellowships is Wednesday, March 20th, at noon.