[image] NASA internship

NASA internships and New Zealand Space Agency scholarships

The New Zealand Space Agency invites high-performing New Zealand tertiary students to apply to participate in the NASA International Internship Programme from June to August 2019. To complement this opportunity, the New Zealand Space Agency is offering the New Zealand Space Scholarship.

NASA International Internship Programme

The NASA International Internship Programme is an opportunity for New Zealand tertiary students to work collaboratively on research with a NASA mentor. The programme will take place at NASA’s Ames Research Centre in Silicon Valley, California from June to August 2019 and is designed to enhance your international and intercultural understanding and skills by working on NASA research or NASA related mission or project. Opportunities for collaboration with a diverse range of other interns will be provided both in formal and informal settings.

Access our promotional resources here.

What topics can I work on?

Interns will collaborate under the guidance of a NASA mentor in the following areas:

  • Entry systems such as safely delivering spacecraft to Earth & other celestial bodies
  • Advanced Computing & IT Systems including supercomputing
  • Aerosciences
  • Air Traffic Management including NextGen Air Transportation
  • Astrobiology and Life Science
  • Cost-Effective Space Missions
  • Intelligent/Adaptive Systems including Autonomy and Robotics, and Human Systems Integration
  • Space and Earth Science including Exoplanets and Airborne Science.


Applicants will be required to indicate which areas they would be most interested in focusing on during the internship.

Find out more information on these topics.

The New Zealand Space Agency will help you get to NASA

To help you undertake your internship, the New Zealand Space Agency will award a New Zealand Space Scholarship to up to four students.

The scholarship aims to:

  1. Support New Zealand’s high-achieving students in space-related activities – the programme will give New Zealand’s future innovators, entrepreneurs and scientists a head-start in their careers by enabling them to develop technical skills at a world-leading space agency, build international professional networks and develop their understanding of the global space economy.
  2.  Build capability in the New Zealand space economy – New Zealand’s ability to leverage existing international space intelligence, thought-leaders and networks such as those at NASA is crucial as we continue to build capability in the New Zealand space industry. Over time, the programme’s alumni will provide a unique source of skills, knowledge and expertise into the New Zealand space economy.
  3. Strengthen New Zealand’s connection to the global space network – the programme offers an opportunity to enhance New Zealand’s reputation as an active, responsible and credible space actor and strengthens New Zealand’s connection to the global space network.
  4. Demonstrates New Zealand’s high-quality tertiary education – supporting New Zealand students to participate in the programme demonstrates that New Zealand tertiary education prepares students to achieve in STEM at the highest levels.


This is a highly competitive programme. Should you wish to apply, please check that you comply with all eligibility criteria before submitting an application.

What does the scholarship cover?

The scholarship covers specified costs relating to the internship at NASA, as follows:

  • return economy airfares to United States;
  • NASA administration fee;
  • accommodation (please note, the successful candidate is likely to be accommodated onsite in NASA lodging);
  • stipend (to cover food, travel and other related expenses);
  • visa-related fees; and
  • medical and travel insurance.

The scholarship will only cover costs associated with participating in the NASA internship. Any additional costs associated with the candidate extending their stay in the United States will be their own responsibility.

Who can apply?

The New Zealand Space Agency is looking for a diverse range of high-achieving students to represent New Zealand at NASA.

Interested students:


Beyond the eligibility criteria, we are looking for students who are :

  • Supportive team players who show respect, build partnerships and work collaboratively;
  • Nimble learners who are flexible, accept new ideas and are responsive to change;
  • Evidence gatherers who get to the heart of complex issues and problems through clear analytical thinking and effective application of expertise; and
  • Creative thinkers who apply creativity and innovation to develop new solutions.


How does the application process work?

The application process is two-phased. Candidates must first be selected by the New Zealand Space Agency, and secondly by NASA as it chooses finalists from a broader pool of international applicants.

  1. Applicants must complete the online application form. The application form includes:
    1. Submitting responses to four questions. The questions will ask you about your suitability for the internship role, what NASA area of expertise you wish to work on and why, how your chosen area of expertise fits with the aims of the scholarship and/or your career aspirations, and how you would apply the skills and knowledge learned during the internship back in New Zealand.
    2. Agree to the terms and conditions of applying for the scholarship and internship, which includes agreeing:
      • that the applicant has satisfied themselves of the eligibility for the required visa. Please note that should you be successful in your application, you will be required to travel to Auckland for an interview at the US Consulate as part of the visa process;
      • to work with Education New Zealand, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and NASA, and provide all required information throughout the application process on a timely basis;
      • to complete a police check or clearance process, should it be required; and
      • should the applicant be successful in their application, to enter into an agreement with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment accepting the terms and conditions of the internship and scholarship.
  2. The following documentation must be uploaded with the application form:
    1. curriculum vitae;
    2. academic transcript;
    3. proof of citizenship for every country for which the applicant currently or previously holds citizenship: and
    4. the names and emails of two referees to request references, one of which is an academic reference. Please note that Education New Zealand will be in contact with the applicant’s referee as soon as the application form is submitted. Applicants should ensure that all referees have agreed to provide a reference in advance of submitting the application.
  3. All documentation must be in PDF format. Any documentation submitted in hard copy or emailed to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment/the New Zealand Space Agency, Education New Zealand and/or NASA will not be considered.
  4. Applications will be open from Monday, 10 September 2018 and will close 5pm, Friday, 12 October 2018. No late, ineligible or incomplete submissions will be considered.
  5. Education New Zealand will formally acknowledge receipt of the application via email.
  6. Applicants will be notified of the result of the first stage of the application process as soon as possible after the application window closes. If progressed to the next stage, part of the recruitment process will involve a competency-based video interview. Following this, you may be required to attend an interview in person.
  7. We anticipate that the New Zealand selection process will take a number of months. Further information will be provided at each stage of the selection process and applicants will be well informed if the process changes. As we are operating the programme and scholarship as a pilot, applicants should be flexible.
  8. Following conclusion of the New Zealand selection process, the successful New Zealand candidate(s) will be nominated to NASA as the New Zealand finalist(s). NASA will then choose finalists from a broader pool of international applicants.
  9. The decision made by NASA is likely to be communicated to applicants in early 2019. The New Zealand Space Agency will provide updates to applicants throughout the selection process.

[image] Exclamation NOTE

Applications should not be submitted directly to NASA. Only applications of candidates recommended by the New Zealand Space Agency will be considered by NASA. No other applications or individual applications sent directly to NASA will be considered.

General information

  • We cannot guarantee that students will be able work on their preferred area of expertise. While we will do our best to arrange for your preference, candidates should be flexible.
  • Recipient(s) who take up this scholarship but do not complete their applicable tertiary qualification may be required to pay back the full value of the scholarship received.
  • All applicants must report to the New Zealand Space Agency and/or Education New Zealand throughout the internship and participate in promotional and alumni activities.
  • The New Zealand Space Agency, NASA and the US Consulate will support the successful candidates’ visa application and the New Zealand Space Agency will assist the successful candidate with all travel arrangements.


[image] Apply now button.