"I recall after the program, a student telling me that she was both surprised and excited that Harvard students were coming to teach. She said that the program gave her a broader sense of the world and opportunities. That exchange exemplifies what PSIL has done and will continue to do. For me, this program gave me new perspectives and experiences that has and will continue to shape the way I view opportunities, education, and mentorship." - Ellen Zhang, 2019 Harvard Student-Teacher


"I was also inspired by the tenacity of our students, who in a particularly touching moment during a power outage which happened in our talent show, perfectly embodied the saying, 'the show must go on.'" - Allison Pao, 2019 Harvard Student-Teacher


"As the Head Teaching Assistant in the program, I had the opportunity to see firsthand how valuable PSIL’s curriculum was for the participating high school students. Scientifically-inspired learning is crucial in today’s world where research and development hold the key to the future. The more young minds involved in research, the more promising our future becomes, and this program provided the perfect platform for inquisitive young minds to explore and learn. I also feel that PSIL helps reduce the knowledge gap (both scientific and cultural) between the developing and the developed worlds; the global south and the global north. Finally, on a personal level, my perspective toward life and career has gained a new edge after the program." - Toijam Diana, 2019 Head Teaching Assistant


We asked, “What was your favorite part of PSIL?” Students answered…

“It was so fun and informative.

“I became more confident towards others.

“The opportunity to meet incredible people.”

“Sam's lecture on creative problem solving taught me how to approach things efficiently and solve them instead of going straight into it blindly.”

“Everything's different and new and exciting, especially the egg drop challenge.

“The chance to meet new friends and new people. It helped me learn more about the outside world.”

“I feel like I've grown more as a person after attending.”

“Chris's lecture about public speaking inspired me.”


"The real highlight of our time in Manipur was working with the high school students. It was incredible watching students open up over the course of the week. Some who didn’t say a word for the first day-or-so of the program were, by our second-to-last day, singing, dancing, and presenting magic tricks to everyone at our talent show." - Sam Kessler, 2019 Harvard Student-Teacher


"I hope to make a positive impact on the lives of students through a career in education, and being a student-teacher for PSIL has given me both hard and soft skills which will help make that aspiration become reality. In addition to all the concrete knowledge and insightful perspectives gained from the trip, the processes of designing my own curriculum, interacting with many different PSIL stakeholders such as students, TAs, and sponsors, and organizing conference logistics have also given me skills that make me a more confident and effective educator. " - Allison Pao, 2019 Harvard Student-Teacher

"After reading several of my favorite poems that highlighted the power of poetry, the students and TAs all told me after class how much they enjoyed the poems and how they hoped to explore it more in the future. This moment was truly impactful for me as I saw how PSIL was able to broaden students’ worldview." - Ellen Zhang, 2019 Harvard Student-Teacher

"Serving as a student-teacher as part of the inaugural Program for Scientifically-Inspired Leadership (PSIL) last January was truly a transformational experience. The trip, which included ten days in Kolkata, Imphal and surrounding areas including Loktak Lake, and New Delhi, as well as enriching experiences such as working on teams to design curriculum, teaching high school students, visiting cultural sites, and learning about Manipuri culture from our teaching assistants, has definitely shaped my undergraduate experience in invaluable, impactful, and unforgettable ways." - Allison Pao, 2020 Harvard Student-Teacher