Martin Eric William Nisser

Graduate Student Fellow
Electrical Engineering and Computer Science/CSAIL
Collier Medal
Award presented by
Sally Kornbluth, President

The Collier Medal honors those who personify Officer Sean Collier’s extraordinary dedication to MIT. This year’s recipient is Martin Eric William Nisser.

Martin is a PhD student in MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, or CSAIL. He has worked with a team from MIT and the European Space Agency to develop a microgravity-adapted fabrication platform, which launched on a mission to the International Space Station in November. Which is amazing, but it’s not the reason he’s receiving this award.

Deeply committed to supporting marginalized students, Martin co-founded Brave Behind Bars, a computer science program for incarcerated women, based out of MIT’s Educational Justice Initiative. He secured partnerships with correctional facilities, fundraised, co-developed the curriculum and taught both online and at Boston’s South Bay House of Correction.

Brave Behind Bars emphasizes practical skills and career readiness, instilling confidence and inspiring students to consider technical careers and opportunities they may never have imagined before.

Martin has extended the initial program to reach even more students. He has traveled to facilities in Maine and Washington, DC, to personally deliver course certificates. And he designed a new curriculum that brings together at-risk teenagers and Cambridge Police Department Officers to learn 3D modeling and printing. So, he’s supporting 3D printing in both the Cambridge community, and the outer-space community!

Martin, in recognition of your dedication to the success of all students, wherever they happen to be in their lives and their learning, we are honored to present you with the 2023 Collier Medal.