https://www.nasa.gov/careers

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Aeronautical Engineering Intern

June - August 2019 • Edwards, CA

What I liked

Great mentors

What I wish was different

Nothing

Advice

Very hands on environment
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Team Lead

August 2021 - July 2023 • Boise, ID

What I liked

I enjoy trying to build something that might real life applications in the future.

What I wish was different

Ask questions when you don't know. Stay strong with what you claim and make sure you can back them up. Believe in yourself.

Advice

It emphasizes a lot but learning to properly delegate task can really help
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Student Trainee (Engineering) - Industrial Power Systems

January - June 2016 • Cape Canaveral, FL

What I liked

Excellent work/life balance, good benefits, meeting great people that were excited to be a part of NASA and what they did, seeing so many things from NASA's history that many have not seen.

What I wish was different

The position I was in was almost exclusively clerical in nature, there would have been very few if any opportunities to design. I did not know this going into the position.

Advice

NASA has many great opportunities, I found that the position I was in was not for me and attempted to get transferred which ended up not working out due to current personnel needs. However, NASA encourages their interns to find a good fit for themselves, they want you to be happy with the work you are a part of. The culture is great and it is easy to see why NASA has been "best place to work" in the federal government for the past few years.
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Taxonomy Intern

May - August 2019 • Washington, DC

What I liked

- my team of mentors and fellow interns were very supportive - a very friendly group to work with especially as a federal agency

What I wish was different

- I wish i took more time to learn about their Technology Transfer program

Advice

- Don’t be afraid to ask to learn something new despite having work at hand. Your mentors will go out of their way to teach you.
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Process Improvement Intern

August 2022 • Houston, TX

What I liked

Everybody in my division is incredibly friendly and always willing to answer questions! Furthermore, I do not feel out of place as a psychology student amongst a team of engineers and physical scientists, and I sense that there is a mutual expansion of perspectives as we work together throughout the process improvement project. Leadership wants you to grow and succeed, and will work with you to make sure your personal and vocational goals are being met. There's always something new and exciting to see everyday at Johnson Space Center, especially since it's home to the hub of human spaceflight research and the Astronaut Corps! It's exciting to know that your work as an intern will have a direct impact on how humanity will move forward through its journey to explore the galaxy.

What I wish was different

I wish I had applied as a Pathways intern so I could have the chance to come back sooner! Pathways interns work multiple tours in different divisions and are often offered full-time civil servant positions after graduation, whereas USRA/OSTEM interns do not have that same guarantee. Either way, I'd recommend applying to both programs as they all offer great experiences.

Advice

Sometimes the work pace can be slow - that's just how government works sometimes! Use this as an opportunity to ask your mentor for additional tasks, shadow other departments, and experience all of the amazing opportunities around the center (tours, lectures, volunteering) that the internship coordinators and committees offer to students.
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Design researcher Intern

May - June 2022 • New Brunswick, NJ

What I liked

Remote, relaxed, flexible schedules

What I wish was different

Better direction

Advice

Be more engaged
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Web Designer Intern

May - August 2022 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

-Having a mentor who was willing to help and offer guidance at every step. -Flexible hours and workweeks as a remote intern. -Many opportunities to learn about careers at NASA and the work that has been done.

What I wish was different

-More time to complete work

Advice

-Ask questions and take notes of your work.
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Intern

June - August 2022 • Greenbelt, MD

What I liked

I liked researching old Soviet spacecraft and making 3D models of them.

What I wish was different

I kind of wish the internship was in person, but I liked it nonetheless.

Advice

Work hard to complete your tasks.
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Research Intern

May 2021 - August 2022 • Greenbelt, MD

What I liked

Working for NASA was incredible. I got research experience, I gained public speaking and presentation skills, and I gained a lot of confidence as a scientist.

What I wish was different

I wish Internships didn't have limits on them! I would have loved to come back for more than 4 sessions!

Advice

Definitely apply for any NASA internship available. I gained so much and my mentors were all amazing!
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Property Accounting Intern

May - August 2021 • Houston, TX

What I liked

This is my favorite internship I have ever completed. I was given real meaningful work that a full time employee would complete. They don’t give you busy work, as every project given to you has a direct impact on NASA’s missions.

What I wish was different

I wish the internship was in-person. NASA has strict Covid-19 restrictions in place right now. Most of the engineering interns were in person but all the business interns were virtual.

Advice

Take initiative, show enthusiasm, and push yourself to produce the best work.
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Strategic Management Intern

June - August 2021 • Washington, DC

What I liked

It was fun learning about how many projects go into a launch. Learning about how NASA has intertwined itself with startups and schools to help the US economy advance in education and technology all at the same time.

What I wish was different

Since I'm a dual major I really wished I got to do an engineering project as well instead of just business. Also i wished NASA respected Engineering technology degrees they are not very fond of them when it comes to engineering positions which did bring my confidence down a bit.

Advice

Make sure you don't get overwhelmed in the first two weeks. It will be a lot of acronyms that will have you very confused. There's so much to do and be apart of. I would definitely say three months is not enough time to experience all of NASA. A six month co-op or even a year round experience would be outstanding if I decided to go back.
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Student Trainee (Engineering)

January 2019 - August 2021 • Huntsville, AL

What I liked

Fun projects Great teams/people to work with Real engineering work/applications Internship club and other interns were great

What I wish was different

Most of it was remote because of covid Depended on project but some projects took a lot of training before I could start on real work Male dominated, 40+ age dominated Internship program coordinators we're consistently helpful

Advice

Mentors and the branch/team and the project you apply for/get assigned to will likely make or break this internship experience
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Intern

June - August 2021 • Los Angeles, CA

What I liked

That we got to work hands on with the project. Use software that is used in industry.

What I wish was different

That the upper management took concerns more seriously and assessed them more objectively, looking into the issues with genuine concern to find the root of the problems.

Advice

Be careful with interpersonal issues within the team. When taking it to upper management you might be “cancelled” and told by the lead management that”you won’t be very successful”
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Intern

June - August 2021 • Houston, TX

What I liked

I enjoyed the enriching learning environment and collaboration with my assigned mentor.

What I wish was different

As NASA is remote this year due to COVID-19, I wish I was able to visit in person. However, the intern leadership still made me feel welcomed and included throughout my experience.

Advice

Time goes quickly throughout this experience, I would definitely try and make the most efficient use of your time possible.
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Systems Engineer

January - May 2020 • Kennedy Space Center, FL

What I liked

I really enjoyed the atmosphere. Being a part of a work environment where you knew that your work had a special impact to what was going on. Everyday was a new experience attempting to complete tasks and it was nice because it was meant to be a learning experience.

What I wish was different

I wish I had asked for more work because sometimes there were waiting periods before new tasks.

Advice

My advice for being a NASA intern is to stay motivated and be sure to complete your tasks to the best of your ability. On a personal note, take the time to embrace that you are working in such a historical area; where men that walked on the moon also walked in the same buildings you'll walk in as an intern. To become an intern, my best advice is to work on small projects or clubs to showcase your experience.
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Mechanical Engineer

March 2019 • Pasadena, CA

What I liked

I work in Jet Propulsion Laboratory under NASA in Pasadena, CA. The best educational experience I have. Learning the science at school is a way of learning but applying it in real life definitely makes you memorize it and brighten up about it as well. I like to be presentable at all time with a supported date to my projects. I am comfortable with public speaking and responding to emails and presenting data to a crowd along with I enjoy the challenges in the work field. As an engineering student, being professional and ready to encounter any obstacle that shows up are my priority and this job has taught me all that.

What I wish was different

Nothing, I will have done it all again the same.

Advice

Pay attention for the same detail, you will learn great deal of stuff. I have learned a big deal of how research and development in finding new science is done. Learning straight from PhD engineers and scientists will make you learn a great deal through just observing the way, they are approaching the problems and solve them.
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Research Intern

June - August 2021 • Washington, DC

What I liked

Doing work that actually makes a difference. I was able to present my work to the leadership team and they took my findings to the next level and continued building on my work.

What I wish was different

Advice

It is what you make of it. You really do get back what you put in
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Software Engineering Intern

June - August 2021 • Stennis Space Center, MS

What I liked

I like the work itself. It was challenging and meaningful without being overbearing. I loved working with the various stakeholders, manager, and engineers, they were extremely helpful and supportive throughout the whole experience and went out of their way to check on me and ask if I had questions or problems.

What I wish was different

I wish I could have been on site or hybrid instead of remote, but that was not a possibility at the time.

Advice

If you show that you have passion for your field and for NASA's missions and are willing to learn, you can almost certainly find an opportunity that suits you somewhere at NASA. If you are just looking for somewhere to make some money while getting some experience, NASA is probably not the best place to go. They are not going to pay the best, but if you are committed and believe in NASA's goals, you can thrive there.
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Engineering Intern

June - August 2020 • Hampton, VA

What I liked

The ability to work along side of the best of the best in the space R&D industry!

What I wish was different

Advice

Don’t limit yourself due to uncontrollable circumstances. Keep pushing forward towards goals. When one is done, write another.
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Research & Programming Intern

June - September 2020 • Mountain View, CA

What I liked

Everybody was extremely friendly and the work was both interesting and applicable to real-world problems, which really isn't something you get often in university classes.

What I wish was different

The internship was completely remote due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which significantly dampened the whole experience. Of course, what I did experience was the best it could have been, given the circumstances.

Advice

Remote jobs aren't going away any time soon and will likely remain even after the pandemic ends. People need to learn how to properly conduct meetings via Zoom or Microsoft Teams and ensure they're providing as good of an impression as they would be in person. That includes (but isn't limited to) wearing proper outfits and making your area presentable.
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