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One Stop Shopping for NASA internships, fellowships, and scholarships

February 23, 2011

This post brought to you by Ryan Clegg.  She is a graduate student at Washington University in St. Louis.

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Interested in a NASA internship, fellowship, or scholarship?   Look no further – NASA is now using one easy, NASA-wide system for the recruitment and selection of undergraduate and graduate students in the STEM fields.

The system is called the OSSI: SOLAR system (One Stop Shopping Initiative: Student On-Line Application for Recruiting Interns, Fellows, and Scholars) and gives students the ability to submit one single application that will be accessible to mentors for all NASA internships and fellowships.  You will be sent offers by interested mentors, or you can search for specific opportunities at different NASA centers and apply specifically for a research project that interests you.  Fellowships are slightly different – below is a list of some basics for applying.

–> For complete instructions and to set up an account and start an application, visit http://intern.nasa.gov and click on the link for OSSI:SOLAR.

–> The current deadline for all opportunities is March 1st, but students interested in fall/spring internships will be able to apply for those opportunities at a later date.

Eligibility:

  • U.S. citizen
  • Accepted/enrolled full-time in an accredited U.S. college or university (high school students who have been accepted but have not yet enrolled are considered “freshman” level)
  • GPA of 2.8 or higher (on 4.0 scale)

Internships

NASA internships fall within three separate sessions:

  1. Spring: January through May – applications open 6/1/2011 – 10/11/2011
  2. Summer: June through August – applications open 11/1/2010 – 3/1/2011
  3. Fall: September through December – applications open 3/2/2011 – 5/1/2011
  • Internships are available at NASA centers and associated facilities
  • Look here for a list of all possible specific internship programs

Fellowships

Fellowships are year-long, and the process for applying for a fellowship in OSSI:SOLAR is slightly different:

  • First, complete the fellowship application and include one letter of recommendation from your faculty advisor
  • Search for specific opportunities of interest
  • Submit a short research proposal idea to the mentor
  • The mentor will respond within 10 business days, either accepting or declining the idea
  • If accepted, you will be required to write a 5-page research proposal to submit by March 1st in order to be considered for the fellowship

For more detailed instructions as well as a list of fellowships you could be awarded, visit OSSI:SOLAR and click on “Fellowships” under “Student Discovery.”

Scholarships

  • Students who are awarded a scholarship will also be given a 10-week internship at a NASA center
  • For a list of participating scholarship programs, visit OSSI:SOLAR and click on “Scholarships” under “Student Discovery.”

Good Luck!

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Thanks for sharing this information, Ryan!

8 Comments leave one →
  1. June 6, 2011 7:08 am

    am from afrika probably a third world country and very intrested in studing solar appliances but very poor is their any option ffor people like us . kindly

  2. March 16, 2011 3:26 pm

    Hey Guys! I applied for SOLAR, i was wondering if anyone have received any offers yet? My friends and I have not heard back from anyone and this is worrying me. :O

    • Ryan Clegg permalink
      March 16, 2011 3:59 pm

      I haven’t heard anything yet either, but I would give it a few more weeks. Sometimes it takes a while after the deadline to start hearing back, and since they kept extending the deadline it probably also extended how long we have to wait.

  3. Ryan Clegg permalink
    February 25, 2011 8:27 pm

    Just to update everyone, I just received an e-mail from OSSI:SOLAR saying they are extending the fellowship application deadline to March 18th since everyone is still getting used to the new system. So there’s still time if you want to try to apply for a fellowship!

  4. PhD Student permalink
    February 23, 2011 5:50 pm

    While this new system is conceptually a good idea, I don’t think it’s ready for use as it is yet. For some reason, no mentor names are included in any of the calls. This makes it much more difficult to evaluate whether or not the research is truly compatible with the student’s interests. In addition, no program names are associated with the calls either. So maybe you’re looking at a GSRP opportunity, or maybe it’s just a semester-long internship. I can’t think of a good reason why any of this information should be excluded.

    Additionally, it is virtually impossible to search by keyword and find anything. Often the only way to get any results is to search in the most broad categories possible with the minimum required search terms. Part of the problem may be that many of these opportunities were written years ago (I recognized quite a few!), and are likely missing key words that would help index them.

    In previous iterations of the GSRP website, it was almost impossible to contact a real live human who could help answer questions about the program and about the website. This problem remains with the SOLAR system; few if any of the NASA officials listed on the website even know that they’re supposed to be a contact for these programs, and many will simply not reply to inquiries from students. I know of one student who has given up on her application because no one has replied to any of her email questions.

    I am not personally applying for a student opportunity this year since I am finishing this semester, but I have been trying to help younger students navigate the new system–and it looks quite clunky to me! Of course, this isn’t really any different than past years, but I thought I’d put this out there since you asked.

  5. February 23, 2011 10:34 am

    I’m curious … how is the new One Stop Shopping initiative working, for those of you using it to apply for fellowships, scholarships, and internships?

    • Ryan Clegg permalink
      February 23, 2011 4:47 pm

      I am using OSSI:SOLAR and I really like it because it’s very easy to fill out and you only have to fill out one application for all NASA internships/fellowships/scholarships instead of filling out tons of individual applications. You can also search for specific opportunities and put in a request for ones that interest you specifically. The one thing that makes me nervous is that I don’t know how the system works after the deadline, and how quickly or how often you will hear back with offers. It seems like individual mentors have to search for you, rather than a specific selection committee. But I guess I’ll have more to say on that after March 1st🙂

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