Despite the longstanding stereotypes, there’s more to MIT than brainiacs who spend every waking hour in the depths of a research lab. MIT has been instrumental in transforming Kendall Square into a hub for tech and innovation. And the Institute wants it to stay that way, especially when it comes to startups.
At a school best noted for excelling at STEM, the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship offers resources to support aspiring student entrepreneurs across the entire institution. So when the center was presented with the chance to expand its crammed quarters into a neighboring space, it went all in and fully remodeled its digs.
According to Greg Wymer, marketing and communications manager for the Trust Center, it increased its footprint from 4,200 square feet to its now spacious 7,500 square feet. What’s more, before it even started the construction phase a few months ago, a committee conducted extensive research at places like the CIC, Workbar and MassChallenge, as well as local companies such as HubSpot. Through their investigations, they were able to identify the makings of a perfect startup space and translate those crucial elements into its revamped center.
Wymer explained, “If we’re training students to work like entrepreneurs, why not get them in an environment that’s like a startup?… It’s good to know how you feel working in the space before you start your own business.”
What does the ultimate startup space look like? For starters, the Trust Center now has a large, open coworking space that just begs people to come, sit down and get shit done. It now has a cafe for meant for eating and mingling, as well as a kitchen “fully stocked with ramen noodles, granola bars and all the coffee they can drink.”
There are conference rooms for those who choose to hold private meetings, in addition to nooks and crannies designated for quiet time and ones for networking. For larger gatherings, it has a board room and what they refer to as “the garage,” an immense room with a garage door that can be opened to accommodate events for up to 120 people.
And let’s not forget about technology. The space is outfitted with a sound system, a media wall to display the latest happenings and a markerspace called Protoworks. In Protoworks, students have access to multiple 3D printers and a laser cutter meant to fulfill their wildest prototyping and ideation desires.
Enough with the talk. We have pictures of the new and improved Trust Center, which will be revealed to the public the evening of June 1 at Demo-Palooza. Feast your eyes on the swank.
Images via Andrew Kubica and Renee Lawlor at MIT.