Helping MIT Graduate Students Manage Life Outside the Classroom
Life as an MIT graduate student is busy enough without having to spend time searching for relocation assistance, financial advice, child care, and other essential services. That’s why MIT is introducing a new, free, and confidential service exclusively for graduate students and their household members: the MIT Graduate Assistance and Information Network (GAIN).
The MIT Graduate Assistance and Information Network (GAIN) is a 24/7 network of professionals who provide life management resources and referrals to help make life easier. Looking for assistance with legal or financial matters? Moving to the Cambridge area but unsure where to begin? Need to find child care or a school for your son or daughter?
See all services
MIT GAIN services, which are available at no cost to you and your household members, include:
- Legal consultation
- Financial consultation
- Child care consultations, resources and/or personalized research and referrals
- Elder care consultations, resources and/or personalized research and referrals
- Relocation guidance
- School/summer camp selection for children in grades K–12
- Nutrition counseling
- Career assessment
- Resources for other life concerns, such as moving services, home repair and cleaning services, pet care, fitness programs and trainers, and more.
Take advantage of these additional MIT Center for WorkLife and WellBeing programs and resources:
See our FAQs
What are some reasons I would reach out to MIT GAIN?
- Legal Assistance Free, 30-minute legal consultation with an attorney; referrals are provided, if needed.
- Financial Consultation: Help with debt management, budgeting, and financial planning.
- Child Care Resources Research and referrals for finding child care.
- Parenting Resources: Research and referrals for parents-to-be and parents with children of any age; consultations on early childhood development and special education concerns.
- School/Summer Camp Resources: Research and referrals for children in grades K–12
- Daily Living Resources: Targeted research and referrals for pet sitting, relocation services, home repair services, and more.
- Nutrition Consultation: Support from a nutritionist on weight management, healthy eating, child-friendly meals, and other dietary concerns.
- Career Assessment: Resume review, career exploration services, and job search strategies.
- Elder Care Resources: Consultations with eldercare specialists and/or resources and referrals.
What happens when I call MIT GAIN?
Welcome –Your call will be promptly answered 24/7 by a GAIN staff member. In addition, email and Live Chat assistance is available during work hours (8:30 am – 5:00 pm ET).
Questions – A specialist will explain GAIN and its confidentiality policy, then ask you some questions about your situation. His or her goal is to understand your needs and identify the type of support that will be most helpful to you.
Support – Based on your needs, a specialist will work with you until the appropriate assistance is obtained. This could include research related to issues or resources, or referrals to local service providers, and other experts.
Follow-up – MIT GAIN staff will always follow up with you to ensure that your needs have been met and to ask if there is anything else they can do for you. The ultimate purpose of MIT GAIN is to help you manage the challenges and demands that interfere with your ability to be focused at home, at school, or in the lab.
Can I use MIT GAIN for more than one concern?
We encourage you to use GAIN whenever the need arises. You can call for multiple concerns—at the same time or at different times—whether you need help with a legal issue or nutrition concern. When you need summer camp research assistance or help with a budget or career assessment, GAIN is available 24/7.
Will MIT GAIN help me find child care near my home or near campus?
GAIN will help you find appropriate child care settings based on your family’s needs. Specialists will ask you questions about your location preference—in-home care, family vs. day care centers, price range, etc. They also will do searches for after-school care and summer camps. Based on your criteria, MIT GAIN specialists will research and send you a personalized referral list of licensed and screened child care providers, along with information on child care availability, cost, transportation, and other areas you note. This research and referral service is provided at no cost, but you are responsible for child care fees. MIT GAIN specialists also will help you find subsidies for child care if you are eligible.
Is the information I provide kept confidential?
All contact with GAIN is confidential. The MIT GAIN program is administered by an outside organization, KGA, Inc., a respected provider of Assistance Programs. GAIN’s staff never shares that you contacted them or any of your personal information without your permission. The only exceptions are those that KGA is required to report per state and/or federal law to protect public safety. These include: suspected child, elder, or vulnerable person abuse or neglect or someone reporting that they are potentially dangerous to themselves or someone else.
Is MIT GAIN available outside of Massachusetts?
Can I refer a friend or neighbor to GAIN?
This all sounds too good to be true. Can I test it?
GAIN specialists welcome you to try this personalized service. Call with any question, big or small, and get help right away. No matter what you are facing, GAIN’s staff will treat you with respect and empathy. They recognize the challenge of asking for help and understand that it can be difficult to make the first call for assistance. It is the goal of each GAIN staff member to make you feel supported and understood and to help you with guidance and resources.