NSF Intern Program

National Science Foundation (NSF) Non-academic Research Internships for Graduate Students (INTERN) Program

UNC Charlotte Research and Economic Development and the Office of Industry and Government Partnerships wish to bring to the attention of faculty researchers, graduate students, and industry partners the very attractive National Science Foundation (NSF) Non-academic Research Internships for Graduate Students (INTERN) program. The NSF “Dear Colleague” letter outlines the details of this program. In summary, the INTERN program provides participating faculty and graduate students with funding to support up to 6 months of a paid non-academic internship in any company as arranged by all parties including the host company. 

As noted on page 2 of the Dear Colleague letter, “The PI of an active NSF award may request supplemental funding for one or more graduate students to gain knowledge, skills and experiences that will augment their preparation for a successful long-term career through an internship in a non-academic setting, including the following:

  • For-profit industry laboratories or industry research and development groups;
  • Start-up businesses, such as (but not limited to) those funded through the NSF’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program;
  • Government agencies (all levels) and National Laboratories;
  • Policy think-tanks; and
  • Non-profit organizations”

This is an exceptional opportunity for a company to receive a graduate student intern placement, for a period of up to six months and at no cost to that company, by way of collaboration with UNC Charlotte PIs of active NSF awards. Eligible awards at UNC Charlotte exist in multiple academic areas including Liberal Arts and Sciences, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Physics, Engineering, and Computing and Informatics.

We are now soliciting interest from any business partners who would like to identify themselves as a possible intern placement location and learn more about this program. An important component of this interest solicitation is the collection of brief descriptions of possible internships from interested companies, and to begin sharing those with graduate students and their research faculty. 

We encourage university industry partners interested in hosting a graduate intern through this NSF program to complete a program interest declaration form, including a brief description of the possible internship, and submit it as instructed. Any questions about the NSF INTERN program should be directed to the CRI Office at 704.687.5690 during standard business hours.