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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

For any technical issues related to the SummerApp application website (e.g. cannot activate account, password reset not working, forgot login for recommender account, item will not upload, etc.), please send an email to - this is the tech support address for the application platform. 

PLEASE NOTE::: Unfortunately, the OEOP office is not able to reset passwords or help if you are not receiving password reset emails that are blocked by your school spam filters. If you are a recommender and having issues logging into your account, you MUST contact


1. My recommender has not received the recommendation request email with the link and instructions to fill out my recommendation. What do I do?

As soon as you submit your recommender's email address, they are sent an email with a link to the application portal and information about completing the recommendation form. This request email is sometimes blocked by school spam filters.

If your recommenders have not received the email containing the link, please first ask them to check their spam folder. Also, please check to make sure there were no typos in the recommender's email address in your application. 

If you are sure that your recommender has checked their spam and that their email address was correct in your application, then your recommender may need help accessing their account, and you should read the information below carefully:

Recommenders who have submitted a recommendation on summerapp in a previous year, should be able to log into their account at to complete your recommendation as long as they are still using the same email address. If a recommender who has logged into summerapp in the past needs help accessing their account, they should fill out the following form:

To ensure that we can resolve your issue as quickly as possible, please have only one email regarding the same issue sent on your behalf.

2. I accidentally entered the wrong contact information for my recommender/my recommender can no longer complete the recommendation and I need to request a different teacher. What do I do?

You may change/update your recommender, however the recommendation will still be due on February 15. If you need to update the name and/or email address of your recommenders, you will be able to make this change yourself in your summerapp acount.

If you must change your recommender, first reach out to your old recommender to let them know. Once the recommender is changed in the system, any work that the initial recommender completed will be lost. This means you should make sure your recommender has not already started their recommendation before you make any changes.

To change the name and/or email of a recommender, follow the steps below:
  • Sign into your account at and scroll down to the recommendation request section
  • Click 'Delete' next to the recommender's information you'd like to change (even if you only need to update the email address.)
  • Confirm the deletion of the request
  • Enter the new/correct name and email and click the blue 'Submit' button at the bottom of the page  (this will automatically send a request email)
  • Check in with your recommender immediately to ensure they received the new request

3. I do not have a school counselor to request a recommendation from.  May I request a letter from another teacher?
The counselor recommendation cannot come from another teacher. If you do not have a school counselor or advisor, please request this recommendation from someone in your school administration who has access to your transcript and academic record (ex. your school assistant principal or principal.)

4. Who should complete my recommendations, and how should they be submitted?
The recommendations required for the SummerApp application must be completed using a unique online form and are not simply a letter of recommendation. You should let your recommenders know that the recommendation includes both an evaluation form and a narrative section that must be completed on the online application platform. You should also let them know that you have selected them to complete your recommendation and that they should anticipate receiving access to their recommendation form through a link in an email that is automatically generated once you submit your recommendation requests in your application. These recommendations must be completed by:
  • A recent math teacher (current or last year)
  • A recent science teacher (current or last year)
  • School counselor or school academic advisor who has access to your transcript and academic record.
Once you have identified these recommenders, you must request recommendations using the online application.

5. I do not know my school counselor that well. Can I get a recommendation from someone else?
We strongly encourage applicants to have their current school counselor submit a recommendation form. However, this can also come from a dean or principal as long as the individual has access to your transcript and academic record. 

6. Can I send in extra letters of recommendation that I feel will make my application stronger?
Due to the high volume of applications, we will not be able to accept any additional recommendations beyond the required number and the required type (math teacher, science teacher, school counselor).

7. I am homeschooled. Who should I ask for my letters of recommendation?
Homeschooled students should request recommendations from individuals other than their parents/guardians or members of their family. We suggest they reach out to a representative of a local community group to which they belong or an instructor from a class they took at a local college, school, or online. The "school counselor recommendation" should be filled out by whomever can best speak to the student's academic program. If a student plans to submit a recommendation from someone other than a teacher or  counselor, they should mention why in the optional 6th essay question and describe the recommender's relationship to the student. Homeschooled students are encouraged to contact us with questions/concerns regarding recommendations.

8. My recommendation status is "Pending." What does that mean? How do I know if my recommendations have been submitted?
When requesting a recommendation, the task will show as "Pending" before the recommender has submitted their recommendation form. The task will be marked "Completed" when the recommender has submitted their recommendation form. You and your recommender will also receive an email when the recommendation has been successfully received.

9. My math teacher and science teacher are the same person. Can this person write both the math and science teacher recommendation? 
No, your math and science teacher recommendations should come from two different people. Please see the Application Checklist for more information about recommendation requirements. If you have questions about who to reach out to for a recommendation, please contact us.


How much does it cost to participate in the OEOP summer programs?
The OEOP summer programs are FREE (tuition, room and board are all covered) for all participants. The only monetary cost is for travel to and from MIT. For MITES, students are required to stay in dormitories on MIT's campus for the entire program, even if the student is local to the Boston area. For MOSTEC, students will be online for the majority of the program and stay in MIT dorms during the MOSTEC summer conference. We will cover these costs.


1. Who can apply to the OEOP Summer Programs?
The OEOP summer programs are open to current 11th grade students, and, at the present time, who are also U.S. citizens or permanent residents with a current U.S. green card. Students can attend public or private school, or be homeschooled. Students from all racial and ethnic backgrounds can apply for our programs.

2. I am not in the 11th grade, but I am currently doing the work of an 11th grade student. Can I still apply?
You must be registered as a junior in high school when you apply for the OEOP summer programs. Students in other grades are ineligible. Please check out our OEOP Resources page and the MIT Outreach Directory for other programs serving students in your situation.

3. I am homeschooled and am essentially doing the work of an 11th grader. Can I apply?
You must submit documentation of your current curriculum to the OEOP summer programs, proving that you are recognized as an 11th grader and that you will be graduating in 2021. This document must be sent along with your application.

4. I have a U.S. Visa. Am I eligible for the OEOP summer programs?
At this time, OEOP programs are limited to U.S. citizens or U.S. permanent residents with a valid green card. Visas of any type (work, student, J-1, etc.) are not substitutes for U.S. citizenship or U.S Permanent Residents holding a valid green card. Students who have a U.S. Visa but not U.S. citizenship or permanent residence are not eligible to apply.

5. Can I apply if I am in the process of obtaining my citizenship and should be a U.S. citizen by the start of the program?/Can I apply if I do not have my permanent residency card at the time I submit my application?
To be eligible to apply, students should have their U.S. citizenship or permanent resident card at the time of application. In order to enroll in the OEOP summer programs, admitted students, must send one of the following in addtion to other enrollment materials: (1) Official U.S. Birth Certificate, (2) Valid U.S. Passport, (3) Official Non-expired Permanent Resident (Green) Card. Admitted students who are unable to provide these documents and other enrollment materials will be unable to participate in the program.  Students should not send this documentation until they are requested to do so after they are admitted to one of the summer programs.


1. What is the Minority Introduction to Engineering and Science (MITES) program?

MITES is a six-week residential summer program during which students have the opportunity to experience a demanding academic atmosphere and to begin building the self-confidence necessary for success at universities. This program also stresses the value and reward of pursuing advanced technical degrees and careers while developing the skills necessary to achieve success in science and engineering.

2. What is the MIT Online Science, Technology, and Engineering Community (MOSTEC) program?
MOSTEC is an online enrichment program that provides students with an engaging experience that extends from the fall into the early spring when they submit their college applications. Via this online community, OEOP staff provides students with exposure to MIT faculty and staff, information about admissions and financial aid tips, opportunities for discussions about science and engineering research, opportunities for mentorship and to share their own research with peers and professionals. MOSTEC students have also the opportunity to attend a week-long summer conference where they attend workshops, present their group projects, and stay on MIT's campus.

3. How much does it cost to participate in the OEOP summer programs?
The OEOP summer programs are FREE (tuition, room and board are all covered) for all participants. The only monetary cost is for travel to and from MIT. 

4. What are the 2020 program dates for MITES and MOSTEC?
  • MITES Program – June 19, 2020 through July 31, 2020
  • MOSTEC Program – June 21, 2020 to December 17, 2020 (MOSTEC Conference: August 2 - 7, 2020)

5. Where will students be staying during the course of the program?
For MITES, students are required to stay in dormitories on MIT's campus for the entire program, even if the student is local to the Boston area. For MOSTEC, students will be online for the majority of the program and stay in MIT dorms during the MOSTEC summer conference. There is no housing or food cost (room and board) incurred by our students for attending our summer programs.

6. Will I receive high school or college credit or grades if I participate in the OEOP summer programs?
Although there will be homework and students take college-level classes, students do not receive formal grades, nor do they receive high school or college credits. All students will receive qualitative final evaluations, and these evaluations can be submitted to support their college and scholarship applications as supplemental materials.

7. How much homework are students given?
The OEOP summer programs are extremely rigorous programs and the workload for each program reflects this rigor. That being said, the amount of homework in each course is ultimately determined by the instructor of each course.


* How do I apply?
To apply for the SummerApp programs, you will need to register for an account with and submit your application by February 1, 2020 at 11:59 PM Eastern Standard Time (8:59 PM Pacific Standard Time).

1. I have a question about the programs or the application process. How do I contact the SummerApp Team?
Due to the large volume of requests we receive, we suggest you first thoroughly review the following resources to learn more:
Application Checklist
Frequently Asked Questions
OEOP Website
Application Tips
2016 OEOP Application Webinar 
(Please note: Application deadlines and some details of the application process have changed)

If you still have questions after reviewing the resources above, please contact us at:

2. When and how will acceptance decisions be released?
Decisions will be released in mid-April 2020. Applicants will receive an email when decisions have been posted. Applicants should view decisions by logging onto their account. Decisions will not be given via phone or mailed out to applicants.

3. Can I choose which program to apply to?
Yes, for the 2020 SummerApp application cycle, students are able to select the program(s) that they wish to be considered for. This is included in the application. If accepted to a particular program, you cannot switch to a different program.

4. The program dates for one of the summer programs conflict with my school calendar-should I even apply?
Each year, the OEOP has admitted students who have school calendars or state-required testing that conflict with program dates. Upon acceptance, we ask those students to notify us about this issue immediately. We will attempt to work with the school system and students to try to find a solution, but we do expect students to be the main point of contact coordinating assignments and testing changes. We still encourage you to submit your application even if your school year overlaps with one of the OEOP programs.

5. When is the application deadline?
The application must be submitted by February 1 at 11:59 PM Eastern Standard Time (8:59 PM Pacific Standard Time). All sections of the application (including the academic information section and requests for recommendations) must be complete and your application submitted by February 1 at 11:59 PM Eastern Standard Time to be considered. With our "Edit After Submitting" feature, you can submit your application early and still edit your application until the submission deadline. Recommenders have until February 15 at 11:59 PM Eastern Standard Time to submit their applications.

6. The dates/times associated with my submitted material seem to be a few hours off. Why is this?
This happens when the local timezone on your application is not set. Please set your timezone in your account settings page.

7. What is "Edit After Submitting"? Why would I submit my application if I still need to edit it?
We do not want you to wait untill the last minute to press "Submit" and run the risk of missing the deadline. To make this easier, we have a feature called "Edit After Submitting".  "Edit After Submitting" allows you to fill out all required application sections, press the "Submit" button as early as possible, and then you can log back in to make edits to any section until the student submission deadline. This feature is useful if there is information-such as grades, test scores, etc. that might end up changing before the deadline. It's also useful if you want to proofread the application multiple times but not run the risk of missing the deadline. We encourage you to submit early to avoid potential technical issues due to website traffic prior to the deadline. When you edit your application after you submit, you do not have to hit submit again (in fact, you cannot!). Simply make your edits and save the changes. We will see what you see on your screen.

8. I already completed a section but the application won't let me edit it. What do I do? 
Everyone can edit all sections of their application until the student submission deadline. This includes both applicants who are still working on their application and those who have hit submit.

To edit a section, please follow these steps:

Step 1: Click 'Edit' next to the section you want to edit. You will automatically be brought to the last page that you edited in this section.
Step 2: Use the blue buttons at the bottom of the screen and click "Save & Next" or "Save & Back" until you land on the page you'd like to edit.
Step 3: Make your changes and don't forget to hit 'Save'

9. After I submitted my application, I made some edits, but nothing happens when I try to resubmit. How do I make sure the new changes were saved?
 Thanks for submitting early! You've made sure that your application has been received before the deadline. When you edit your application after you submit, you do not have to hit submit again (in fact, you can't!). Simply make your edits and save the changes. We will see what you see on your screen.

10. I was not able to submit my application by the deadline. Can I still turn it in?
For your application to be considered, you must complete all required sections AND  then click the "Submit" button by the deadline. If your application has not been submitted by the deadline, it cannot be reviewed.

11. I was recently accepted into another program, and I need to let them know if I'll be attending. However, my first choice is MITES/MOSTEC. When will decisions come out, and can I receive my application decision earlier?
Our programs decisions are available no sooner than mid-April each year (*now available on the SummerApp site*). We encourage any applicants who are deciding between multiple offers to carefully consider their offers and to determine what is in their best interest. If you do decide to accept your spot in this other program and it is a binding decision (meaning that you are obligated to attend after accepting the offer), please let us know so that we can pull your application from review.

12. Is there a waitlist?
After careful review of applications through the selection process, some students may be placed on a waitlist. If applicants have the ability to be on the MITES/MOSTEC waitlist, they will have been notified through the admissions decision letter on their application portal. We regret that we are unable to add applicants to the waitlist who were not assigned to the waitlist through the selection process.


1. Am I required to submit scores from a standardized test in order to apply?
Test scores are not required in order to apply for our summer programs, or even to submit an application. However, we do strongly encourage students to submit test scores if they have them. In order to submit your test scores, you will be asked to input your scores in your application and upload an unofficial copy of your test score report. Your school counselor will also be asked to input these scores into their recommendation if they have access to them. We only accept test scores from the SAT I, PSAT, ACT, and preliminary ACT. Scores from an SAT Subject Test, AP or IB test, etc. are not accepted by our process. We do allow for students to submit superscores, but the test score reports for each test included in the superscore must be uploaded to the application in one file.

2. I will be taking the PSAT, SAT I, or ACT in the spring. Can I still apply to for the OEOP summer programs?
All application materials must be submitted by the application deadline of February 1. If you cannot enter your scores by the application deadline, you can still submit your application without these test scores.

3. The application is requiring me to upload scores for a test I didn't take or for which I do not have a score report. What do I do?
Please note, if you indicate that you will enter scores for a particular test on page 2 of the academic information section, you will be REQUIRED to enter test scores and upload a score report for that test. You will not be able to submit your application until you enter your scores and upload your score report. If you do not have scores to upload, you MUST indicate that you will not submit scores for that test.

If your application is asking you to upload or report scores for a test you did not take or for which you do not yet have scores, please follow these steps:

Step 1: Navigate to the second page of the academic information section.
Step 2: Make sure you click 'No' for all tests that you either did not take or for which you do not have score reports to upload.
Step 3: Click 'Save & Next' or 'Save & Continue' until you are brought back to the summary screen. The task prompting you to upload scores will no longer be visible.


1. My first semester grades will not be released by the application deadline. What should my school counselor submit?
If available, please have your school counselor upload your first quarter grades in their recommendation. If your first quarter grades are not available, your counselor should submit your most recent grades.

2. I attend school in a different country and my grades are on a different grading scale. How do I fill out the section of the application were I submit grades and GPA?
Please use the short answer question in the academic information section to describe in detail how you have been graded. Your counselor should upload your transcript and official documentation that explains how you have been graded. These materials should be translated by a school official.


1.  Is the 6th short answer question optional?
This question is for students to provide more context around special circumstances and their application. We understand that no application can meet the needs of every individual that applies, and this short answer can be used to provide us with additional information that may give us a more complete understanding of your application.

2.  What is the word limit on the essays?
The essays have a strict word limit of 300 words per short answer question.