6-A Frequently Asked Questions

      Q. Who Can Apply?

      Course 6 Students:

      – Sophomores
      – Juniors
      – Seniors
      – MEng students
      – Ph.D. Students

      All students in good standing may apply to the 6-A Internship Program. All students must be committed to the completion of the work assignments.

      Q. What is the application process?

      Anyone interested in joining 6-A must file:

      – Formal application through the 6a portal
      – Updated resume + transcript
      – Recommendation Letter (optional, highly encouraged)

      The application should be submitted through the 6A portal (Slideroom). 

      Q. Do I need to write a recommendation letter?

      Students are highly encouraged to submit a recommendation letter. It is best to request the letter from faculty or others who know you and your work well (e.g., UROP, SuperUROP, project, or summer job supervisor; preferably not from a peer). 

      *Keep in mind this letter, as well as your CV and other application material, will be used by the member companies when choosing which students, they want to interview for the program. 

      Q. How do I polish my application material?

      There are many resources to help you polish your application material. For example, many students have found the EECS Communications Lab (https://mitcommlab.mit.edu/eecs/) really useful. Make sure the application material is as strong as possible and highlights why the companies should hire you!

      Q. What is the selection process like?

      All applications will be shared with all the 6-A member companies for review. As part of the 6-A online application, students should indicate which research topics they are interested in and those topics will be used by the 6A companies to filter the applicants they are interested in interviewing. 

      The 6-A office will try its best to make sure you interview all the companies that are interested in the research topics that you selected; however, in some cases, that may be not possible due to limited interview slots per company. In such cases, we will follow the guidelines that 6-A companies give us regarding their interview preferences. 

      IMPORTANT For students in Track 3 (i.e., those interested in pursuing an M.Eng. Thesis at the company), their 6-A internship and admission into the 6-A program are contingent on the student being admitted into the EECS M.Eng. Program. The 6-A Office does not manage the EECS M.Eng. admission process, which depends on the EECS Undergraduate Office. 

      Please send an email to ug@eecs.mit.edu if you have questions regarding your eligibility for the EECS M.Eng. Program.

      The 6-A internships and admission into the 6-A program are contingent on the student obtaining the work visa needed by international students doing internships in the US, or by MIT students doing internships abroad. Some companies (e.g. Lincoln Laboratory) may also require the student to get security clearance.

      Q. Can I take classes while doing my 6A internship?

      No, students are not allowed to take any classes while doing their full-time internship. Students need to plan their schedules accordingly.

      Q. How does Course Registration for 6a work?

      6.9850 (12 units) – Undergraduate Students

      6.9870 (12 units) – Graduate Students (MEng)

      6.ThM – MEng Thesis Course

      24.133 – Experiential Ethics

      Q. What is the Experiential Ethics course?

      24.133 Experiential Ethics is a collaborative, discussion-based course that provides space and tools to work through these questions. It is designed to be taken alongside summer internships and has been required for the 6A program since 2022. 

      More about the class:

      • Weekly virtual discussion sections run from June-August (potential in-person option for students in the Cambridge area). 

      • Final in-person project presentations are held in September. 

      • Summer tuition is not charged; the class is listed as fall enrollment. Students not at MIT in the fall can enroll for credit in the spring. 

      • Choose between a more intensive 6-unit version of the course (anticipated) and a 3-unit one.

      See here for more FAQs for 6A. For more information, updates, or questions: elo.mit.edu/experiential-ethics

      Q. Do I keep my regular faculty counselor/academic advisor?

      Yes, when a student joins the 6-A Program, they keep the faculty counselor assigned to them when they joined Course 6. Your faculty counselor continues to handle registration matters and should be consulted for education advice.

      Q. How am I graded?

      Students are required to submit a progress report. We will send you an email when those reports are due. You will receive an “Incomplete” if you do not return complete reports on time.

      Additionally, we require company mentors to complete an “Employer’s Evaluation Report” at the conclusion of each assignment. All of these reports enter into the granting of academic credit for 6-A work assignments. If you meet all the reporting requirements and have performed satisfactory work at your 6-A company, you will receive a “PASS” grade in your 6-A  registration.

      Q. Do I need to be accepted into the MEng program before doing my MEng internship?

      Yes, you will need to be accepted into the M.Eng. program first before doing your 6-month M.Eng. internship.

      Q. Am I guaranteed admission into the M.Eng. program?

      No. Students are strongly advised to apply for M.Eng. as soon as they meet the requirements. You may apply more than once if you are not accepted on the first attempt provided there is another application cycle before you graduate with your SB. Read more about M.Eng. admission and degree requirements here.

      Q. Do I have to do a 6-month M.Eng. internship in the summer/fall?

      The purpose behind an uninterrupted 6-month internship is to provide the student with sufficient time to do an in-depth piece of engineering work at the company which will be acceptable to the Department’s Faculty as the basis for the M.Eng. Thesis. For special circumstances, with the agreement of their 6-A Company, 6-A students can request from the 6-A Program Office a different graduate internship schedule.

      Q. As an Intern, will I be paid?

      Yes, you will receive a competitive salary during your work assignments. However, we believe salary should not be the main determinant in the selection of a particular company. Also, keep in mind that depending on whether the company is a Core member or an Affiliate member of the program, your MIT tuition may or may not be covered by the company.

      6-A student salaries are established by the individual companies and are not necessarily uniform amongst all 6-A companies. Salary information is available from the individual company only, not from the 6-A office.

      Q. Will my salary ever increase?

      Yes, you will generally receive an increase in salary for each successive internship. By the time you complete your senior year, you will have completed the academic work for your S.B. degree, and a company normally increases salaries during the 6-A M.Eng. year.

      Q. Will I Receive Company Benefits?

      6-A students are generally considered temporary employees and are not eligible for company benefits such as medical insurance.