Louis Sudler

Louis Sudler Prize

The Louis Sudler Prize for Excellence in the Arts is presented annually to a graduating senior who has demonstrated excellence or the highest standards of proficiency in music, theater, painting, sculpture, design, architecture or film. The Prize was established in 1982 by Mr. Sudler, a performer in the arts and an arts patron from Chicago. An endowment fund provides a $2,500 award to the honoree.

Cycle: Annual

Eligibility: Graduating MIT Senior

Process: Nomination (Self-nominations not accepted)

Laya and Jerome B. Wiesner

Laya and Jerome B. Wiesner Student Art Awards

The Laya and Jerome B. Wiesner Student Art Awards are presented annually to up to four students (undergraduate or graduate), living groups, organizations or activities for outstanding achievement in and contributions to the arts at MIT. Established by the Council for the Arts at MIT in 1979, these awards honor the late President Emeritus Jerome Wiesner and Mrs. Wiesner for their commitment to the arts at MIT. An endowment fund provides a $2,000 honorarium to each recipient.

Cycle: Annual

Eligibility: Undergraduate or Graduate MIT Students

Process: Nomination (Self-nominations not accepted)

Harold and Arlene Schnitzer at home. Credit: David Butow.

Harold and Arlene Schnitzer Prize

The Harold and Arlene Schnitzer Prize in the Visual Arts was established in 1996 through an endowment from Harold and Arlene Schnitzer of Portland, Oregon. Schnitzer, a real estate investor, graduated from MIT in 1944 with a degree in metallurgy. The prizes are awarded to MIT students, undergraduate and graduate, for excellence in a body of artistic work.

Cycle: Annual

Eligibility: Undergraduate or Graduate MIT Students

Process: Self-Nomination

Eugene McDermott Award in the Arts at MIT

Eugene McDermott Award in the Arts at MIT

The Eugene McDermott Award in the Arts at MIT recognizes rising, innovative talents and offers its recipient a $100,000 prize and a campus residency. The award may be given to an artist working in any field or cross-disciplinary activity, including architecture, creative writing, dance, design, filmmaking, media arts, music, theater and visual arts. Award nominees are identified by an Advisory Committee composed of international leaders in arts and culture. An Award Committee, chosen by the Council for the Arts at MIT and comprised of arts opinion leaders at MIT, then selects the recipient.

Cycle: Every other year

Eligibility: Artist working in any field or cross-disciplinary activity

Process: Requested nominations by Selection Committee

Ji Qui Novel Architecture

Student Architecture Awards

  • Alpha Rho Chi Medal—Given to a graduating M.Arch student for service, leadership and promise of professional merit
  • America Institute of Architects Certificate of Merit—Given to a graduating M.Arch student for academic excellence
  • America Institute of Architects Henry Adams Medal—Given to the top ranking graduating M.Arch student
  • William Emerson Prize—Given to an architecture senior for academic excellence
  • Harry Wentworth Gardner (1894) Prize—Given to an architecture senior for academic excellence and achievement in design
  • Marvin E. Goody Award: given to a Master’s student in any department for a thesis proposal that extends the horizons of existing building techniques and use of materials, encourages links between the academic world and the building industry, and increases appreciation of the bond between good design and good building
  • Rosemary D. Grimshaw Award—Given to a M.Arch student whose thesis proposal best exemplifies the spirit of Professor Grimshaw
  • Imre Halasz Thesis Prize—Given to a graduating M.Arch student in recognition of academic excellence and a thesis in which the design recognizes the expanding responsibility of architecture
  • Sydney B. Karofsky ’37 Prize—Given to an outstanding M.Arch student with one further year of study
  • Master of Science in Architecture Studies Prize for Thesis—In recognition for the best SMArchS theses
  • Marjorie Pierce/Dean William Emerson Fellowship Award—Given to a second-year M.Arch woman for outstanding academic and design achievement
  • Arthur Rotch Prize—Given to a graduating M.Arch student for achievement in architectural design
  • Arthur Rotch Special Prize—Given to a graduating Master of Science in Architecture Studies student with the highest academic achievement
  • Undergraduate Faculty Design Award: given to an architecture design stream senior
  • Tucker Voss Award—Given to a student who shows promise for the future in the general field of building construction


Creative Commons License. Credit: CarbonArc.

CMS Media Spectacle

The CMS Media Spectacle showcases video projects of all genres created by MIT students, staff, faculty and affiliates.

The event, founded by late CMS program administrator Chris Pomiecko, celebrates his love for filmmaking by showcasing the finest video projects created by MIT students, staff and faculty.

Historically, the event has received submissions of every genre from experimental to documentary to narrative works created on every conceivable platform and device. Prizes include the Chris Pomiecko Award for Best Undergraduate Entry, as well as awards for Best Non-undergraduate Entry, Animation, Experimental, Narrative, Nonfiction, and Audience Favorite. The event is judged by esteemed members of the CMS community, including Cathy Pomiecko, Chris’s sister.


Gyorgy Kepes, with brush in hand, works in his Boston studio in this 1989 photo. Credit: Jan van Steewijk

György Kepes Fellowship Prize

The György Kepes Fellowship Prize was established in 1982 by the Council for the Arts at MIT to encourage and celebrate individuals at the Institute whose creative work reflects the vision and values of György Kepes (1906-2002). Founder of MIT’s Center for Advanced Visual Studies, György Kepes revealed fundamental relations between art and science, and art and the physical environment. The Kepes Fellowship Prize is presented to a member of the MIT community who has demonstrated excellence in the creative arts: architecture, visual and performing arts, and writing.

Cycle: Annual

Eligibility: MIT student, staff or faculty member

Process: Nomination

MIT students perform at the 150th Convocation. Credit: Dominick Reuter.

Student Music Awards

Awards in Music are determined by faculty in the Music Department.  There is no application process.

  • Emerson Music Scholarships/Fellowships
  • Brad and Dorothea Endicott Award: in recognition of distinguished service and musical contribution to world music
  • Gregory Tucker Memorial Prizes: in recognition of exceptional ability in performance and overall contribution to the Music and Theater Arts Section
  • Everett Longstreth Jazz Awards: in recognition of distinguished service and musical contribution to the MIT Festival Jazz Ensemble
  • Richard and Jody Nordlof Awards: in recognition of distinguished service and musical contribution to the MIT Wind Ensemble
  • David Epstein Award: in recognition of distinguished service and musical contribution to the MIT Symphony Orchestra
  • Philip Loew Memorial Awards: in recognition of creative accomplishment in music
  • Philip Loew Memorial Award: in recognition of accomplishment in composition
  • Jack and Edith Ruina Scholarship Award Certificate: in recognition of special gifts in piano
  • Ragnar and Margaret Naess Certificates of Distinction: in recognition of exceptional talent and commitment to performance at MIT
  • Concerto Competition
  • MIT Chamber Music Society Special Award Certificates

Process: MTA faculty nominations only

Scene from Dramashop's production of "R.U.R.," staged February 4-6, February 11-13, 2010. Credit: Hayden Taylor

Student Theater Arts Awards

Theater Arts awards are determined by the faculty in the Theater Department. There is no application process.
  • The Edward S. Darna Award is awarded to a graduating student who has demonstrated excellence in theater arts and made a substantial contribution to the health of theater life at MIT.
  • The Joseph D. Everingham Award is named in honor of Joseph Everingham, who was a long-time director of Dramashop from the 1950s through early 1970s. It is awarded to a graduating student in recognition of a single creative outstanding performance or notable creative accomplishments in theater arts.


Process: MTA faculty nominations only

Image: Creative Commons License. Credit: Stewart Butterfield.

Student Writing Prizes

The Isabelle de Courtivron Prize seeks student writing submissions on immigrant, diaspora, bicultural, bilingual, and/or mixed-race experiences. It is open to all MIT undergraduate students. Entries will be judged by a panel of faculty and professional writers.

Ilona Karmel Writing Prizes
  • The Ellen King Prize for Freshman Writing: Writing by freshmen at MIT in any category is eligible; e.g., short story, poetry, essay, and drama.
  • The Enterprise Poets Prize for Imagining a Future: Essays, short stories or poems, that convincingly imagine a future human enterprise are eligible. The word enterprise is used in the broadest possible sense to cover products, processes, companies, industries, forms of government, social movements, artistic forms – any human endeavor. This prize is open to undergraduate and graduate MIT students.
  • The Robert A. Boit writing prize: Writing by undergraduates in the categories of essay, poetry and short story is eligible. Up to four awards will be given in each category.
  • The S. Klein Prizes: Open to MIT undergraduate and graduate students. Entries should be intended for non-specialized but educated audiences and should show evidence of publishable quality.
  • DeWitt Wallace Prize for Science Writing for the Public: Writing of any length addressed to lay audiences on issues and developments in science, medicine, and engineering. Works of any length are eligible. Open to undergraduates only.
  • The Boit Manuscript Prize: Works of substantial length by MIT undergraduates are eligible in the categories of fiction, poetry (at least three poems or minimum length 200 lines), essay, and drama. This prize is awarded for longer works and collections, in any category mentioned above, which give evidence of publishable quality. Both completed manuscripts and those in progress are eligible. Up to three awards will be given in each category.
  • The Writing and Humanistic Studies Prize for Engineering Writing:  Writing by undergraduates on any topic of professional interest to engineers, is eligible.
  • The Prize for Writing Science Fiction: Writing by undergraduate students in the category of science fiction short story.
  • The Vera List Prize for Writing on the Visual Arts: Writing by undergraduate students should demonstrate unusual and thoughtful expression on some aspect of contemporary visual art.  Sponsored by the List Visual Arts Center.
  • Literature Prize: Awarded for Excellence in Literature