NASA Science Activation Program

Coppin State University Science and Technology Center

The NASA Science Activation Program (SaSa) invites highly motivated rising college freshman and sophomores to participate in the SaSa summer internship program. SaSa is funded by the NASA Science Activation Program and will draw on NASA Science Mission Directorate’s unique aircraft, instruments, and experts.

This 8-week, full-time paid internship includes a competitive stipend, housing, and travel. Participants will gain hands-on research experience in all components of a research campaign, including flying onboard the NASA P-3 research aircraft to collect data.   

Welcome to NASA SaSa at Coppin State University

We recognize that to increase the diversity of the STEM workforce, the change needs to begin at the onset of a minority student’s career.

To help foster more effective, sustainable, and efficient use of the NASA science content, we will build student research opportunities as part of the existing courses and research programs at selected minority-serving institutions.

Student Airborne Science Activation Internship

SaSa Summer Internship News

Coppin students take flight! Learn about the first class of NASA’s Student Airborne Science Activation (SaSa) Program.

Goals of the program

A student in a lab coat peers into a microscope in the lab
  1. To create a student geoscience learning ecosystem to enable effective student engagement with NASA scientists & engineers, academic advisors, peers, and the local communities.

  2. To provide students with new skills to work with NASA science equipment and real data from field/airborne campaigns and satellites.

  3. Provide students with problem solving skills in the areas of instrument development, operation and mathematical tools and methods to analyze field data. 

  4. Provide research, mentoring, and networking opportunities for early-career undergraduates to address the shortage of individuals from historically underrepresented groups graduating with STEM degrees from Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) and a need to prepare these students to enter STEM graduate programs as well as the NASA and research workforce.

What the program offers

  • 8-week program at 6 Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) and 2 NASA centers

  • Receive a competitive stipend, travel and housing expenses covered

  • Gain hands-on research experience with the guidance of faculty and NASA research mentors

  • Fly onboard NASA research aircraft

  • Gain practical training in scientific research, data collection, and experimentation

  • Opportunity to present at national Geoscience conferences 

  • Access to ongoing professional development activities, workshops, mentoring, and the SaSa community network

Eligibility and Application

Selection Criteria

Applicants will be selected based upon:

  • Be enrolled full-time

  • Good academic standing with a GPA of 3.0 or better

  • Status as a first- or second-year undergraduate student

  • Interest in pursuing a STEM-related degree and career

  • Interest in the Earth, Ocean, and/or Atmospheric Sciences

  • U.S. citizen, non-citizen national, or permanent resident

How to Apply

Apply online at The application portal is open beginning November 1, 2021.

​The applicant must submit the entire application package, including personal statement, statement of interest, 2 letters of recommendation, and official transcript(s), by the January 31, 2022 deadline for full consideration.


Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, unofficial transcripts are accepted if they are downloaded from your university website. Scanned copies of official transcripts are also acceptable; please upload your scanned transcripts as a PDF to your application. Remove or cover any Social Security numbers.

Students with a GPA of 3.0 or greater are encouraged to apply. Consideration will be given based on the level of difficulty of your courses, the remarks of your recommenders, and your personal statement, including extenuating circumstances that are described.

No, we require that students attend the full 8-week program to make the most of the research experience.

If your Fall 2021 grades are not finalized on your transcript by the application deadline of January 31, 2022, due to your institution's academic calendar, exam period, or other exceptional circumstances, you may submit your transcripts after January 31. If you submit after the application deadline, please upload your transcript as a PDF and notify us of the reason for the delay by emailing us at before the January 31 deadline.

Contact Us

Thank you for your interest in the NASA Science Activation Program. If you would like more information on anything you have read about the program, please reach out!

Visit us at for application information. Questions about the application or SaSa program? Email us at

Chairperson and Professor of Biology


Emmanuel Atta-Obeng
Assistant Professor