How to Get into NASA as an Aerospace Engineer

(Last Updated On: September 6, 2020)
How to Get into NASA as an Aerospace Engineer

NASA is the world leader in space research and pioneers in developing powerful rockets. NASA is creating history every time they conduct missions, we can get enormous examples from history like the first man on the moon, and the latest exploration in mars and deep space. NASA is now planning to land the first women in mars by 2024.

So a job at NASA is a dream for every aerospace engineer and space geeks around the world, but getting into NASA as an aerospace engineer is not an easy task especially for citizens from other countries.

NASA will mostly select their new aerospace engineers from famous colleges like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University.

NASA has many facilities around the USA getting into there is equivalent to getting into NASA as an aerospace engineer.

  • NASA’s Jet propulsion Laboratories
  • Kennedy Space Centre
  • Johnson Space Centre
  • Armstrong Flight Research Centre
  • Goddard Space Flight Center
  • White Sands Test Facility

These are some of the facilities of NASA.

Students from Indian and other nonnative English speaking countries need any of the English certifications to get a job at NASA.

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) are two major English certification courses accepted worldwide.

#1 Way: Join Any Undergraduate or Graduate Aerospace Engg Course

The best way to get into NASA as an aerospace engineer for non-American citizens is to join any undergraduate or graduate aerospace engineering courses in any of the universities in the United States of America.

The USA is one of the best countries to study aerospace engineering that has several famous universities and colleges, and the diverse culture in the county will make them stand out from the other world-famous universities.

A student from India can join for an undergraduate course after the completion of plus two from India, finding a right university is important in abroad study plans.

  • California Institute of Technology
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Stanford University
  • Georgia Institute of technology

These are some of the best universities and institutes for studying aerospace engineering in the USA.

The main benefit of studying from the USA for NASA job aspirants is STEM opportunities offered by NASA.

STEM is the abbreviation for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. NASA is offering several opportunities like Interactive classes, Engineering design Challenges, opportunities to interact with astronauts, senior scientists, and aerospace engineers from NASA and its supporting facilities.

There are internship and pathway programs are also part of STEM opportunities. The universities like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has a specific internship program for their students.

The MIT students are not only placed in NASA or its supporting facilities like Jet propulsion laboratory but also in private aerospace companies like Boeing, Virgin Galactic, Space X, and Northrop Grumman, etc.

#2 Way: Join NASA Internship

NASA internship is available from the high school to the university level or graduate level. The internship is one of the easiest ways to get into NASA as an aerospace engineer or gain some direct experience from NASA and students may get a stipend award based on their performance and grades in university.

The NASA interns are allowed to participate in some of the NASA projects and get an opportunity to work with professional scientists and aerospace engineers. The main advantage of this program is that there is no need for prior experience in the field.

The federal government is giving funds for NASA to conduct this internship and fellowship programs. Studying an undergraduate or graduate program in a county like the United States of America is expensive than any other country so a passionate student with good curriculum records can apply for this fellowship program provided by NASA and it will an easy way to get into NASA as an aerospace engineer.

#3 Way: International Internship Programs

Another way for getting into NASA as an aerospace engineer is international internship programs.

Through this international internship program, students from certain approved countries and some of the Universities or space agencies can get into NASA.

  • Victorian Space Science Education Center (VSSEC) Australia,
  • Brazilian Space Agency (AEB),
  • Canadian Space Agency (CSA),
  • Israel Space Agency (ISA),
  • Crown Prince Foundation Jordan,
  • Agency for Science,
  • Innovation and Technology (MITA) Lithuania,
  • Mexican Space Agency (AEM),
  • Ministry of Business, Innovation, and Employment (MBIE) New Zealand,
  • Norwegian Space Center (NSC),
  • Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) Portugal,
  • Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI) South Korea,
  • Swedish National Space Agency (SNSA),
  • National Institute of Higher Education Research Science and Technology (NIHERST) Trinidad and Tobago,
  • UAE Space Agency (UAESA)

These are the institute or space agency of countries which are eligible for the international internship program at NASA.

NASA is promoting this international internship for building up a mixed cultural environment at NASA, it might help in future international missions. The internship is conducting in for sections in a calendar year they are named spring, summer, and fall section respectively.

#4 Way: NASA Pathway Programs

Pathways are another STEM engagement program provided by NASA. This is the way for new graduates to getting into NASA as an aerospace engineer. The pathway provides paid work experience for students and an opening to new graduates to kick start their career in the aerospace field.

Through pathway programs, recent graduates are considered for permanent employment at NASA.

  • NASA Pathways Intern Employment Program (IEP)
  • NASA Pathways Recent Graduates Program (RGP)
  • NASA Pathways Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Program

These are the 3 main pathway programs provided by NASA.

An aerospace graduate can go for a pathway recent graduate program or pathway intern employment program. The applications for these opportunities can be applied through the USA jobs website.

An aerospace engineer can get into NASA by gaining experience in the aerospace field from other organizations or companies.

But the above-mentioned methods are easiest to get into NASA an aerospace engineer.

how to get into nasa as an aerospace engineer