The SpaceX Intern Program offers students in business, engineering, and software a remarkable opportunity to work at one of the most unique companies in the world. Here, you will find everything you need to know about working as an intern at SpaceX.
What is a SpaceX Internship like?
SpaceX interns work directly with some of the most talented engineers and business people working in space exploration. An internship position at SpaceX is no walk in the park. SpaceX interns are given a lot of responsibilities and are often expected to work well north of 40 hours a week (closer to 70 or 80 hours). However, these interns are rewarded with the unique opportunity to work on groundbreaking projects at a singular and visionary company.
When can I intern at SpaceX?
The SpaceX Intern program is offered year-round at three different times:
- January to April (Spring)
- May to August (Summer)
- September to December (Fall)
If you are offered an internship, you are required to work full-time for at least 12 weeks.
Who can apply for the SpaceX Intern Program?
The SpaceX Intern Program is open to students who are currently enrolled in a four-year accredited university program or a graduate program. Graduates are not allowed to apply. However, students within six months of graduation are eligible for internships. SpaceX internships are open to students in both technical and non-technical degree programs, and internships are available in business operations as well as engineering and software.
Where do SpaceX internships take place?
SpaceX internships take place at six different SpaceX offices/locations:
- McGregor, Texas – Rocket Development Facility
- Cape Canaveral, Florida – Launch Site
- Vandenberg AFB, California – Launch Site
- Hawthorne, California – Headquarters
- Seattle, Washington – Satellite Development
- Washington, D.C. – Government Affairs
Which SpaceX teams offer internships?
SpaceX offers internships in three roles:
- Business Operations Internship
- Engineering Internship
- Software Internship
These positions are available at any of the six SpaceX locations listed above.
Am I eligible for the SpaceX Intern Program?
To apply for the SpaceX Intern Program, you must meet the following requirements:
- You must be currently enrolled at an accredited university or college.
- Business operations or software applicants must currently be enrolled at an accredited university or college or within six months post-graduation.
- You must be able to work full-time, onsite for a minimum of 12 consecutive weeks during the program period.
SpaceX also lists a set of preferred qualifications for applicants. Note that your application will not be disqualified if it does not meet these qualifications. However, SpaceX internships are very competitive, and applicants who meet these qualifications will be more strongly favored in the application process.
The ideal candidate would have:
- GPA of 3.5 or higher
- Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively in a team environment, accomplishing tasks with limited resources at a rapid pace
- Intermediate skill level using the Windows operating system
- Intermediate skill level using Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook)
- For Technical Roles: Hands-on experience through engineering project teams, lab research or through a prior relevant internship or work experience
- For Business Operations Roles: Prior relevant internship or work experience
Additionally, because SpaceX has to comply with the U.S. Government space technology export regulations, you must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident, or other protected individual as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3), or you must be eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State pursuant to the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR).
How do I apply for the SpaceX Intern Program?
You can apply for all SpaceX internships through SpaceX’s intern application portal at www.spacex.com/internships. SpaceX has an online application submission form, through which you can upload your application materials and provide links to relevant social media.
How can I find the right internship at SpaceX for me?
SpaceX lists all available internship opportunities as well as early career engineering jobs, at www.spacex.com/internships. Note that SpaceX begins listing internship opportunities well in advance of their start date. For example, applications for the 2023 Summer Program have opened.
Can I apply for an internship at SpaceX if I have already graduated college?
No, you cannot apply for an internship at SpaceX if you have already graduated. To apply, you must be currently enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program. However, if you believe you would be a competitive applicant for a SpaceX internship, consider applying for an associate engineer position. Associate engineer positions are open to engineering graduates who have completed a bachelor’s degree or graduate degree from an accredited program within six months of the employment start date. These positions are also listed at www.spacex.com/internships.
Are SpaceX interns paid?
Yes, SpaceX interns are paid and can also be used toward school credit, at the discretion of your university. SpaceX does not publish their Intern pay rates online. However, per Glassdoor, SpaceX pays Interns at a median rate equivalent to $74,799 per year. Additionally, in 2017, MSNBC reported that SpaceX interns make a median monthly pay of $4,080.
SpaceX also provides relocation, housing assistance, and special events for interns and associate engineers.
How do you land an internship at SpaceX?
SpaceX Internships are unsurprisingly very competitive. SpaceX notes that in hiring they seek out a strong academic record but place particular emphasis on the strength of extracurricular projects. Applicants are generally expected to have made significant contributions to extracurricular projects.
Many technical interns, for example, are involved in student-driven engineering groups at school and are able to demonstrate their work in these groups. Students in non-technical roles are also expected to demonstrate hands-on experience in their field.
In general, it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the eligibility criteria for any internships you are interested in and to follow sound internship application strategies.
Specifically, you will want to make sure that you submit your application early. You should also make sure that your resume includes the information SpaceX recommends that applicants furnish:
- Your university’s name, degree and major(s), cumulative GPA, and graduation date
- All prior relevant internships, co-ops or jobs you have had
- Any relevant project team involvement and role on the team
If you land an interview, you can expect to go through various technical phone screens. The group that interviews you may also ask you to complete a quiz, project, or programming test.
So, make sure to prepare for the interview by researching the position you are applying for. According to SpaceX, you should be prepared to talk about “your greatest technical achievements and the challenges you faced,” the way you “specifically innovate and take your project to the next level,” and “your individual contribution to projects.” You should also be familiar with SpaceX’s mission and how it directly relates to your skill set.
When can I expect to get a response from SpaceX about my application?
Unfortunately, due to the sheer volume of applications that SpaceX receives, they do not respond to each application. You will hear back only if you are selected to interview for a position. And generally, it takes SpaceX six months to go through the candidate vetting process.
Can I re-apply for a SpaceX internship?
Definitely. SpaceX encourages all applicants to continue to re-apply. To maximize your opportunity and increase visibility, SpaceX recommends that applicants apply for multiple locations and terms.
How else does SpaceX support students?
The SpaceX Intern Program is the main way that SpaceX offers support for students. It does not have a company-wide scholarship program, for example. However, some SpaceX locations do provide scholarships to local students, as the McGregor SpaceX facility did earlier this year.
For more internship opportunities, use TUN’s Job Search Engine.