https://www.nasa.gov/careers

NASA

Student Researcher

June - August 2021 • Palmdale, CA

What I liked

Accessible mentors/advisors, exciting and engaging research, hands on element, dramatic improvement in coding skills

What I wish was different

In person, of course, would have been better, but it was the best it could be given the circumstances.

Advice

Take the risk, get outside your comfort zone, explore your interests and find your passion!
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Pathways intern

May - August 2021 • Huntsville, AL

What I liked

Helped with lunar habitat research. It felt great being apart of an actual project and not just busy work.

What I wish was different

Everything was via Microsoft Teams. Wish they were able to allow interns to come in person.

Advice

Don't doubt your skillset. Reach out to your superiors and they will always point you in the right direction with projects.
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Software Engineer Intern

May - August 2021 • Houston, TX

What I liked

Working with cutting edge research

What I wish was different

I wish I was there longer

Advice

Always be curious and do not be afraid to ask questions to your team / supervisors
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Mechanical Engineering Intern

June - July 2021 • Tempe, AZ

What I liked

I liked networking with other goal-oriented students from universities across the nation. Hearing their experiences and even struggles reaffirmed why I'm pursuing a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering -- to further the world's knowledge of space through designing rockets. In this internship, I also had the chance to learn Siemens NX, a cutting-edge software for designing engineering models. Access to this software is limited due to its high cost for companies and everyday consumers, so it was an honor to be able to not only learn it, but also have the opportunity to be certified in it.

What I wish was different

I wish it was in person at the Arizona State University Space Works Laboratory; however, due to COVID-19 restrictions at the time, the internship was held virtually.

Advice

In the same manner a sponge absorbs all the water it can hold, absorb all the knowledge you can in your internship(s); that knowledge is what makes you more of an asset for whatever route you decide to pursue in your career!
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OSTEM Intern

June 2021 • Greenbelt, MD

What I liked

I liked that I was able to do research that had never been done before, and that they trusted me to do the research well.

What I wish was different

Advice

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Quantum Research Intern

June - August 2021 • Washington, DC

What I liked

Supportive team (both mentors and other interns)

What I wish was different

More organization and communication

Advice

Let go of your attachment to the outcome
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NASA Aerospace Scholar

June 2018 • Houston, TX

What I liked

The abundance of teamwork and leadership practice was extremely beneficial. Touring NASA Johnson was a great addition, I had the privilege to visit many ‘behind the scenes’ areas.

What I wish was different

I wish that the tasks during our ‘mission to Mars’ simulation were more challenging and enriching.

Advice

If you have the opportunity to participate, do it. It is totally worth it!
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Artificial Intelligence Intern

May - August 2021 • Greenbelt, MD

What I liked

Meaningful research

What I wish was different

Hard to turn into a job after graduation

Advice

Apply via NASA website Also my internship supervisor said she wouldn’t hire anyone with a 4.0 GPA, because she thinks perfectionists aren’t the best for research, so aim for 3.6-3.9 GPA
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Climate Researcher

May - October 2021 • San Antonio, TX

What I liked

Lot of great research experience. Very encouraging mentors.

What I wish was different

Nothing! It feels like the NASA CAMEE MIRO internship gave me a very clear idea of what it’s like to work at NASA based on the networking and discussions I had with current NASA employees.

Advice

Be flexible! Just like with any NASA role research priorities and projects can change pretty quickly. You have to manage your own self study in order to make sure you’re adapting your knowledge base quickly and accurately to any new tasking!
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Senior IT Analyst

June 2017 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

I love the work-life balance.

What I wish was different

I want a more fast paced environment where people are always on their toes.

Advice

Keep learning and striving for the next step. Do not become comfortable or complacent.
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Systems Technician III

June 2018 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

-Good benefits -Management cares about growth -Very smart employees that are willing to teach

What I wish was different

-No weekend shifts -More opportunities to move up

Advice

-Never stop working on yourself -Always ask questions -When asking for help, remember to give back. Think about what you can do for others.
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Student Researcher

October 2017 - September 2018 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

The program that I participated in encouraged young scientists to be involved not only within their research but within the community. I think that community involvement is an important way to share science as well as encourage people to join the scientific community and I appreciated being challenged to incorporate this within my priorities outside of my research.

What I wish was different

I think that it was bit obscure on how to get involved in different activities outside of the research being done in my lab group. As I mentioned before, there was a big emphasis on community involvement, however, besides independent activities, it was hard to locate other ways to get involved.

Advice

I think that your experience here will vary widely depending on what lab group you are in. Each lab group has its own culture and your experience there will be predominantly impacted by that unique culture of the lab. If you have the opportunity to explore different labs, take note of which lab cultures work best for you, especially if you are considering a future career in research as this is an ongoing theme in any research institution. Additionally, given what a great research institution Ames is, there are a lot of guest speakers and seminars that are hosted here. Take advantage of those to learn more about what is going on in the field!
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Mechanical Engineering Intern

June - August 2018 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

Lots of other interns and fun events

What I wish was different

More oppurtunity to explore mentor's work

Advice

Be proactive
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Research Intern

June - August 2018 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

What I wish was different

Advice

Take risks and don't be afraid to choose a project that may be out of your "skill set." I had no prior machine learning experience, but I learned all I needed to know on the fly and ended up with a very successful project!
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Human Systems Integration Intern

June - August 2018 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

learning about different aspects of NASA

What I wish was different

more structured workload

Advice

great experience if your interested in space sciences+research
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Aeromechanics Intern

June - August 2018 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

Bay Area was incredible. Lots to do, very fun, and the people in the area are great to be around. Ames is a lively research center with lots of historical facilities, including the largest wind tunnel on the planet. The scientists and engineers at Ames are top of their field, and everyone is willing to help out and share their knowledge with interns. The best part is that Ames is very laid back, fitting the typical Silicon Valley culture.

What I wish was different

Bay Area is very expensive to live.

Advice

Don't expect to make any money coming out of the summer. The stipend is meant pay for the cost of living, but is also meant to spend on experiences with the other interns you meet at your internship.
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Systems Engineering Intern

May 2018 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

I love working in an R&D environment working on technology that is going to better all of mankind. I really enjoy working with people from different STEM and research psychology backgrounds in the work I am doing, and they teach me something new everyday! It really allowed me to understand the courses I've been taught at San Jose State from a non-traditional perspective.

What I wish was different

I wish I had started applying sooner. Initially I was hesitant to apply because I did not think I was a good candidate and feared my knowledge gap would hold me back. It was my knowledge gap that enabled me to thrive in that position and provided direction in what to pursue. Everyone at NASA is incredibly supportive and invest a lot of their time and effort into students.

Advice

Do not be afraid to apply to positions you are interested in! You do not know who is looking at your resume or the entire picture of what they want out of a candidate. And, be persistent! I reapplied 3 times before being selected for my current internship.
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Aeromechanics Intern

June - August 2018 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

The people I worked with and formed bonds with were incredible and an indispensable part of the experience. It made transitioning to California much easier.

What I wish was different

I wish there had been more time for me to stay and work on my projects, and to explore more of the Bay Area.

Advice

It's a bit of a tough work environment, but putting in the effort is worth it and will result in a rewarding experience.
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Biology Research Intern

May - July 2018 • Akron, OH

What I liked

I like the other interns that worked in the lab. The independence that I had in the lab. The grad student that I worked with was very helpful and kind.

What I wish was different

If I could do two projects

Advice

Don’t be afraid to try new things and take the opportunity when you can.
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Intern

June - August 2018 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

It was an amazing experience that really changed my life. I got to go to many conferences and tour some of the world’s greatest research labs for the space industry. We toured supersonic wind tunnels and the largest wind tunnel in the world at Ames. We also had the opportunity to visit other Nasa centers and aerospace companies. Our personal and group projects were all very unique and provide a great skill building opportunity.

What I wish was different

Ames didn’t really quite have the vibe that I wanted for a company that I would like to work for in the future. I want to continue working for Nasa at other centers. Also, the internship was part of a program that did not have an option of returning.

Advice

I would say to not give up when applying for jobs. I applied for nearly 200 and only got this single internship.
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