From the beginning, ESG has been committed to discovery in learning through innovation. ESG was founded at a time of great change in American society, when the counterculture of the 1960s was in full swing and students and staff alike were searching for new educational paradigms. ESG was an experiment designed to answer a basic question: Given a minimal amount of structure and an opportunity for self-governance, what would a really intelligent, science-focused group of students do with their educational experience?
Although much more structured today, ESG continues to support students in taking charge of their own education. Studying the core first-year subjects is always done with an eye towards self-discovery. Students are encouraged to explore their academic passions and contextualize their learning. ESG teaching staff members are easily accessible to help students consider their choices of major. Students are encouraged to ask questions, both in and out of the classroom, and collaboration with fellow ESGers is valued. In a fast-paced, information-intensive environment like MIT, ESG students take the time to consider not just what they are learning, but why they are learning.