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Student Internships

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ESA / About Us / Careers at ESA

ESA offers student internship opportunities from three to six months to students in their last or second-to-last year of a master's degree in technical and non-technical domains. Learn everything you need to know in this article.

Every year in autumn, 100 student internships opportunities topics are published on our website and remain open for a month for students to apply. Opportunities are available in engineering, science, IT, business and administration services.

In 2021:

Internship opportunities at ESA will be published in November and will remain open for a month. Exceptionally this year, due to the uncertainties arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, the student internship programme will be offered remotely, with interns working from their place of residence, not hosted at an ESA site. (Only for very rare exceptions (e.g. where laboratory access is essential) will opportunities be offered on site.) This decision has been taken in response to the COVID-19 measures currently in place in ESA Member States, Associate Member States and Cooperating States and also across ESA establishments. 


Any questions ? Read our FAQs about 2021 remote student internships.


Who can apply?

To be eligible for a student internship at ESA :

  • You should preferably be in your final or second-to-last year of a university course at masters level (or equivalent). You must have student status and be enrolled at university for the entire duration of the internship. 
  • You must be a citizen of one of the following ESA Member States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. Nationals from Latvia, Lithuania and Slovenia, as Associate Members, or Canada as a Cooperating State, can apply as well as those from Bulgaria, Cyprus and Slovakia as European Cooperating States.


What do we offer?

  • An enriching and highly valuable experience that could open doors to a career within Europe’s space sector, renowned research institutes or, of course, ESA.
  • An international, multicultural and friendly working environment.
  • Three to six month internships. 
  • Students are normally given one internship during their studies. This may be exceptionally split into two parts if so required by the student's university, provided that the total duration does not exceed six months.
  • Internships are unpaid, however, a monthly allowance of €600 for non-residents and €300 for residents is granted. A non-resident is defined as someone living more than 50 km from the relevant establishment. The non-resident allowance will also be granted to students with special needs, irrespective of their residency status.
    In 2021, students selected for remote internships will receive a monthly allowance of €300 irrespective of their place of residence. 
  • Student interns are responsible for their own health insurance, accident insurance and travel expenses.
  • Student interns are responsible for finding their own accommodation.

More about Life at ESA

Find out everything you need to know about life at ESA and work-life balance on our pages.
For more information about ESA sites, check out ESA Establishments.


Recruitment process


How to apply for a student internship opportunity

Opportunities are published in November each year and remain open for a month. You can set up a job alert to be informed as soon as the opportunities are published!

  • Once published, you will be able to browse the ESA list of opportunities here.
  • Select the one that best matches your interests and profile.
  • To apply, you first have to register and create your candidate profile with your CV and motivation letter.

Once you have applied, you will be able to track the status of your application.

Recruitment timeline

  • November: call for applications
  • December/January: shortlisting and selection of candidates
  • February: earliest start date for internships. The take-up-duty date is set by mutual agreement taking into account preferences included in your application form and can be any time from February to October of the same year. 

All candidates will be informed of the outcome of their application. 


Our tips for your application

Before applying, read our opportunities thoroughly and focus your attention on an opportunity that is in line with your interests and background.

Share your motivation, interests and enthusiasm in your motivation letter – but keep it clear and concise! Carefully answer the questions in the application form: they are important for us to learn more about your profile and your application. 

If you have any further questions, feel free to write to us at


Looking for more learning and hands-on opportunities?

ESA Academy is open to university students from undergraduate to PhD level coming from ESA Member states, Canada, Latvia and Slovenia.

ESA Academy joins forces with European universities, space institutes, and national space agencies to offer exceptional learning and hands-on opportunities, in a vast portfolio of different programmes. ESA Academy is designed to complement academic education. Its objective is to enhance students’ educational experience and help them develop both practical and theoretical know-how and expertise in various disciplines, ranging from space sciences to engineering, space medicine, spacecraft operations, project and risk management, product and quality assurance, standardisation and much more.

Learn more about ESA Academy.

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