Find Your Place
Wondering where to “Find Your Place” with us at NASA? Take a look at the amazing opportunities which we have within NASA’s Earth Science Division (ESD). We offer a variety of research and learning opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as early-career researchers, educators and citizen scientists. Whether you are looking for an internship, a way to be involved in citizen science efforts, or looking for grant opportunities within NASA- we have a place for you and your talents!
These programs provide invaluable support to ESD’s ongoing work using Earth observations to advance our knowledge of the planet’s interconnected and changing systems. The unique opportunities offered in Earth science research, engineering, applications, and technology help prepare the Earth science workforce of the future to continue the ESD mission and improve life on our planet.
Postdoc and Early Career
NASA Postdoctoral Program
The NASA Postdoctoral Program (NPP) offers U.S. and international scientists the opportunity to work on 1 to 3 year assignments with NASA scientists and engineers. NPP Fellows work at NASA centers and institutes to advance NASA's missions in Earth science, heliophysics, planetary science, astrophysics, space bioscience, aeronautics and engineering, human exploration and space operations, and astrobiology. Annual stipends start at $60,000, with supplements for high cost-of-living areas and certain degree fields. Annual application deadlines are March 1, July 1, and November 1. U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents, and foreign nationals eligible for J-1 status as a Research Scholar may apply.
To learn more about specific opportunities and to apply, please visit https://npp.usra.edu/opportunities/.
Send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
DEVELOP is an Applied Sciences training program that gives individuals experience applying Earth observations by working on interdisciplinary projects with state and local governments, nonprofits, and other organizations. Participants are mentored by science advisors from NASA and partner agencies at 11 locations nationwide. There are three opportunities throughout the year for students, recent graduates, and early or transitioning career professionals to apply. Applicants must be at least 18 years old, and those applying to work at NASA Centers must be U.S. citizens.
Each year, NASA’s Earth Science Division solicits proposals through the Science Mission Directorate’s Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Science (ROSES) announcement in support of basic and applied research, technology, and data systems. Selected proposals fund focused and integrative research across a broad array of scientific disciplines to advance knowledge of and explore interactions among the major components of Earth systems, to apply that knowledge to society, and to advance the tools available to further Earth Science studies in the future. All categories of US organizations are eligible to submit proposals. Proposals from foreign organizations are considered only on a no-exchange of funds basis.
ROSES-2020 is available at https://solicitation.nasaprs.com/ROSES2020
ROSES-2021 will be available in February 2021 at https://solicitation.nasaprs.com/ROSES2021.
Future Investigators in NASA Earth and Space Science and Technology (FINESST)
Graduate students pursuing masters or doctoral degrees in Earth and space sciences or related disciplines at U.S.-accredited institutions may submit proposals to this program. Announced in November, proposals are due the following February with selections announced in May. A FINESST grant can fund research projects for up to three years, at a maximum of $45,000/year. Institutions submit proposals on behalf of the advisor and student (future investigator).
This single-investigator program supports outstanding research in Earth science for early career scientists and engineers. Proposals are solicited every 3 years. Award duration can be for up to 3 years. Institutions submit proposals on behalf of the PI. Opportunities will be announced at https://nspires.nasaprs.com.
NASA Internships and Fellowships
NASA internships and fellowships leverage NASA’s unique missions and programs to enhance and increase the capability, diversity and size of the nation’s future science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workforce. Internships are available from high school to graduate level. Internships provide students with the opportunity to participate in either research or other experiential learning, under the guidance of a mentor at NASA.
It’s never too early to get started. At NASA, you have the opportunity to work and explore careers while still in school. The Pathways Program provides current students with paid work experience and recent graduates with a dynamic career development program at the beginning of their careers.
JPL STEM Internships and Fellowships
The Higher Education group facilitates internships and fellowships that bring undergraduate students, graduate students and faculty from diverse backgrounds and STEM focus areas to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory for one-of-a-kind opportunities in space exploration.
Student Airborne Research Program
The Student Airborne Research Program (SARP) is an 8-week summer program for rising senior undergraduate students, who participate in scientific campaigns on NASA Airborne Science Program flying laboratories. Applications from U.S. citizens enrolled full-time at a 4-year U.S. college or university are due in January.
Download: SARP 2021 Flyer
Educators & Citizen Scientists
The GLOBE Program: Opportunities for Learners, Educators, and Citizen Scientists
The Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) Program is an international science and education program that provides students and the public worldwide with the opportunity to participate in data collection and the scientific process, and contribute meaningfully to our understanding of the Earth system and global environment. The program is sponsored by NASA and supported by the National Science Foundation, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the Department of State. Read a description of the program or visit the GLOBE website to learn more. The GLOBE Program was initially developed for educators working with students, but now citizen scientists in GLOBE countries can participate too via the GLOBE Observer app.
Each year, GLOBE hosts an International Virtual Science Symposium. In an entirely online format, students can share their research, earn virtual badges, get feedback from a team of STEM professionals, and discuss their research with other students and the GLOBE community.
NASA Citizen Science
NASA’s citizen science projects are collaborations between scientists and interested members of the public. Through these collaborations, volunteers (known as citizen scientists) have helped make thousands of important scientific discoveries. Want to work on some real NASA science? Visit Citizen Science Projects to find out more.
Citizen Science for Earth Systems Program
NASA's Citizen Science for Earth Systems Program (CSESP) is focused on developing and implementing projects that harness contributions from members of the general public to advance our understanding of the Earth as a system. CSESP advances the use of citizen contributions to Earth science research by directly supporting citizen science activities and by deploying technology to further citizen involvement in research. CSESP complements NASA's ability to observe the Earth from space, air, land, and water by engaging the public in our mission to "drive advances in science, technology, aeronautics, space exploration, economic vitality, and stewardship of the Earth."
Interested in helping NASA solve tough problems? Find opportunities to participate in challenges, prize competitions crowdsourcing and citizen science activities that develop solutions for problems related to NASA’s mission at the NASA Solve website.
What is it like to work at NASA?
Interview with several key engineers who help build and test the GPM Core Observatory at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.
Wondering what other opportunities await you? Check out these additional opportunities at NASA’s “Learn Science” page where you will find programs and scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students, internships for high school and college students, post-doctoral fellowships, special programs for early career researchers, faculty members, and senior scientists.