NREL Student Training in Applied Research Internship Program

The NREL Student Training in Applied Research (STAR) Undergraduate Internship program offers undergraduate students and faculty at minority-serving institutions hands-on experience with clean energy research over the course of a year.

An undergraduate student completes work in an NREL for her internship.

The program connects students and faculty with NREL's team to foster a future generation of industry leaders and sustained research engagement.

Learning Phases

  1. Attend a 10-week summer internship at NREL and experience firsthand cutting-edge research alongside an NREL mentor.
  2. Build upon your internship experience through follow-on work with a faculty adviser throughout the following academic year at your university.

Salary and Support

The NREL STAR Undergraduate Internship program covers travel, housing, and salary for students while they are on NREL's campus during the summer. In addition, funding will be provided to students and faculty advisers for their follow-on contributions during the subsequent academic year.


Full-time undergraduate students currently enrolled in a U.S. minority-serving institution as defined by the U.S. Department of Education are eligible for the NREL STAR Undergraduate Internship program.

Eligible applicants must also:

  • Be undergraduate students, ideally between their second and third year at the time of the summer internship
  • Be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours
  • Have maintained a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 in the last completed semester
  • Be willing to relocate to an NREL campus for the 10-week summer internship.


During the summer, students can work a maximum of 40 hours per week. Throughout the subsequent academic year, students must contribute no more than 5 hours per week on follow-on work, while faculty mentors must contribute no more than 5 hours per month.


In addition to the salary and support listed above, NREL STAR interns receive limited benefits, including:

  • An EcoPass for public transportation
  • Access to NREL's voluntary 403(b) Employee Savings Plan
  • Confidential assistance through NREL's Employee Assistance Program
  • An option to participate in medical, dental, and vision insurance plans if working 20+ hours per week.


Contact with questions.