Early Career Opportunities

EARTH SCIENCE OPPORTUNITIES
Undergraduate, Graduate and Early Career

NASA’s Earth Science Division (ESD) offers a variety of research and learning opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students and those in the early stages of their careers. 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.

Application and proposal requirements may change on a yearly basis. See individual program websites for additional details and official deadlines.

STUDENT AIRBORNE RESEARCH PROGRAM (SARP)
https://baeri.org/sarp/
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.

FUTURE INVESTIGATORS IN NASA EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (FINESST)
Opportunities will be announced at https://nspires.nasaprs.com
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 up to three-year research project, for a maximum of $45,000/year. Institutions submit proposals on behalf of the advisor and student (future investigator).

NASA DEVELOP
https://develop.larc.nasa.gov
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 12 locations Nationwide. There are several 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.

NASA POSTDOCTORAL PROGRAM
https://npp.usra.edu
NASA postdoctoral fellows spend 1–3 years with scientists and engineers at NASA Centers and institutes working on assignments in Earth and space sciences, aeronautics, space operations, exploration systems, and astrobiology. Stipends vary depending on assignment. Application deadlines are in March, July, and November. Fellows must have U.S. citizenship, lawful permanent resident status, or the exchange visitor J-1 visa. F-1 visa holders may also be considered.

NEW INVESTIGATOR (EARLY CAREER) PROGRAM IN EARTH SCIENCE
Opportunities will be announced at https://nspires.nasaprs.com
This single-investigator program supports outstanding research in Earth science for early career scientists and engineers. Proposals are solicited every 2–3 years for awards averaging between $80,000 and $90,000 a year for up to 3 years. At the time of selection, principal investigators selected must be U.S. citizens or have lawful permanent resident status; institutions submit proposals on behalf of the PI.