Enhancing research skills among the students and scholars is one of the primary objectives of the institute. The institute makes adequate budgetary provisions for the maintenance of research equipment through capital allocations. An amount of ₹1.5 crores was sanctioned to the institute in 2008–09 towards innovation. MITians have access to various journals and educational materials to facilitate research by students and scholars. Students of the institute take up a summer internship as a part of their curriculum. Several research programs in the areas of nanotechnology, nuclear engineering, VLSI design, and pattern recognition are being pursued in the interdisciplinary labs under the Institute’s innovation centre. Manipal Dot Net (MDN) is a privately owned software and hardware design and services organization located close to the campus, that offers internship opportunities to students.
Situated 5 km (3.1 mi) east of the center of the temple city of Udupi and 65 km (40 mi) north of Mangalore, Manipal was previously part of the Shivalli village panchayat. Now it is part of Udupi city. The name is derived from “munn” and “palla”, anglicized to Manipal. Munn means “mud” and palla means “lake” in Tulu language. This lake, roughly in the shape of a 400 metres. diameter circle, after which Manipal is named, is located in the middle of the town and about 6 km. away from the Arabian Sea, and has a boating facility. The Swarna river passes just north of Manipal. Recreational facilities are available through End Point Park. Manipal was once a barren hill with few trees. This hill was transformed into the university town it now is by Dr. T. M. A. Pai, who first started the Kasturba Medical College in 1953, now a part of the university, the Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE). Tourist spots like Agumbe, Kudremukh, Kapu, Delta, and Malpe are also located nearby.
From September to February, the weather in Manipal is tropical with daily temperatures averaging 27 °C (81 °F). From June to mid-October, Manipal witnesses one of the most extreme monsoons in the world, with the annual precipitation ranging from 500–560 cm (200–220 in). The months of December to May are hot and humid, with the daily temperatures typically peaking at 35 °C (95 °F). Being away from large urban centers and the highly tropical climate of the town attracts a large number of birds, with 155 different species of birds being recorded in February 2015, including rarities such as the Tickell’s Thrush, Blue-eared Kingfisher, and Slaty-breasted Rail.