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Life and culture: Athletics & recreation

We have the largest Division III athletics program in the United States. About a quarter of our students are varsity athletes, and many more participate in club and intramural sports, as well as general fitness and recreation.

Varsity athletics

With 33 varsity sports teams, we offer the largest Division III program in the nation, in addition to a Division I crew program. MIT is highly competitive within its NEWMAC conference.

It is possible to be a student and athlete at MIT. About 25% of MIT students participate in varsity athletics, and on average, our varsity athletes have slightly higher GPAs than non-varsity athletes. In fact, MIT student-athletes have earned 294 Academic All-America citations, the most of any DIII school in the nation.

As a Division III school, MIT does not award athletic scholarships, nor do coaches get to select students directly. However, prospective student-athletes may contact the coach of their sport to indicate their interest in MIT.

Club & intramural sports

If you want to play sports but not at the varsity level, you can participate in club and intramural sports. The key difference between the two is that club sports compete primarily against teams from other universities, while intramural sports are teams of MIT students competing against each other.

There are 35 club sports at MIT, including nationally competitive archery, pistol, and martial arts teams. Meanwhile, there are 27 intramural sports, within which hundreds of teams organized by MIT community members compete annually at different skill01 Our director Mikey Yang '05 had never skated before he joined an IM ice hockey team his first winter at MIT. This is why some say that, for certain IM skill divisions, it's somewhat more fun to watch than to play. levels.

Recreational facilities

Our recreational facilities span 477,053 ft2 across campus, and all students have access to them:

  • Zesiger Sports and Fitness Center, which houses an Olympic-size swimming pool, a smaller teaching pool, a state-of-the-art fitness center, and a fully staffed sports medicine center
  • Alumni Pool & Wang Fitness Center, featuring lap and instructional pools, a fitness floor with stationary machines and free weights, a group exercise studio, and a spin studio
  • Johnson Athletic Center, which features an ice rink, a six-lane indoor track with a large indoor field, and four tennis courts
  • duPont Athletic Center with Rockwell Cage includes five basketball courts, a fencing room, wrestling room, multiple squash courts, a firing range, and an indoor golf range
  • J.B. Carr Indoor Tennis Bubble, which houses four indoor courts for MIT Varsity Tennis, students, and MIT Recreation Members
  • Harold Pierce Boathouse on the Charles River, which includes an eight-oared moving water indoor rowing tank, 64 ergometers, and a fleet of over 50 shells
  • Walter C. Wood Sailing Pavilion, the oldest university sailing pavilion in the world and the birthplace of intercollegiate sailing in the United States
  • Steinbrenner Stadium, the home of MIT football, lacrosse, and track and field
  • Briggs, O’Brien, and Barry field(s), which offer acres of on-campus athletics fields for sports and general recreation
  1. Our director Mikey Yang '05 had never skated before he joined an IM ice hockey team his first winter at MIT. This is why some say that, for certain IM skill divisions, it's somewhat more fun to watch than to play. back to text