The Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI) offers selected undergraduates an opportunity to participate actively in lunar and planetary research with scientists at LPI and the NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC). The purpose of this program is to expose undergraduate students in planetary and terrestrial studies to an actual research environment in order to help them examine and focus their career goals and to encourage their development as planetary scientists. The 10-week program begins June 8, 1998, and ends August 14, 1998. Interns will receive a $350 per week cost-of-living allowance, plus a maximum of $1000 toward travel expenses. Program personnel will assist interns in obtaining shared low-cost housing in nearby apartments.

The LPI is located near JSC south of Houston, Texas. The LPI's primary purpose is to provide, on NASA's behalf, leadership within the scientific community in interdisciplinary research on lunar, planetary, and terrestrial programs. Interns will be assigned a project working with an advisor located at LPI or JSC.


College undergraduates with at least 50 semester-hours credit who are interested in pursuing a career in the physical sciences are eligible. December 1997 graduates and 1998 spring semester graduates are also considered eligible. Relevant disciplines include the geosciences, physics, chemistry, engineering, computer sciences, and mathematics. Applicants will be considered for appointment without regard to race, creed, color, sex, national origin, age, handicap status, or other nonmerit factors. Selection is based on the following criteria: (1) scholarship, curriculum, and experience; (2) career objectives and scientific interest; and (3) match of interest of applicant with available research projects. All application information must be received at LPI no later than February 6, 1998. Notification of selection will be made by March 13, 1998. Successful applicants should be prepared to accept (or reject) the offer to participate within two days of notification.


Typical projects in past years have included studies in formation of the planets and the solar system, lunar resource utilization, interplanetary dust particles and lunar sample characterization, meteorites and their origins, properties of planetary regoliths and atmospheres, planetary volcanism, geophysical data analysis and modeling, geochemistry, petrology, experimental petrology, processing of remote sensing data and images, photogeology, stratigraphy and geological mapping, tectonics and tectonic processes, impact cratering, and spectroscopic observations of planetary surfaces. Each project will be directed by an LPI or JSC scientist.


To apply, send the following information (no application form required):

  1. Name and address at school with daytime and evening telephone numbers (include time of day/evening you can be reached by telephone).
  2. A brief biographical sketch.
  3. A description of academic goals, career plans, and scientific interests.
  4. A brief summary of why you wish to participate in the intern program.
  5. Official transcripts and three letters of recommendation covering academic achievement, career potential, and character. Transcripts and letters of recommendation must be mailed under separate cover and must be received by LPI no later than February 6, 1998.

The application information and any questions concerning the LPI Summer Intern Program should be directed to

LPI Summer Intern Program
3600 Bay Area Boulevard
Houston TX 77058-1113
Attention Ms. Cecilia M. Hoelscher
E-mail: hoelscher@lpi.usra.edu
(phone: 281-486-2196)