Applications for 2024 are closed.


NSF SOARS is dedicated to broadening participation in the atmospheric and related sciences. NSF SOARS is an undergraduate to graduate program built around a summer research internship, mentoring by top scientists and engineers, and a supportive learning community. In addition to the summer internship, NSF SOARS includes year-round support, funding to attend conferences and last-dollar tuition scholarships. Successful Protégés are eligible to participate in the program for up to four years.

Selection Considerations

NSF SOARS encourages applications from individuals who are members of communities that are historically marginalized in the atmospheric and related sciences; including students who are Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, and Hispanic or Latinx, woman, first-generation college students, veterans, and students with disabilities. Students from Minority Serving Institutions are encouraged to apply. NSF SOARS welcomes students who identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community; students who have experienced, and worked to overcome educational or economic disadvantages, and/or have personal or family circumstances that may complicate their continued progress in research careers.

Full selection criteria can be found here: Selection Considerations & Application Instructions Link (PDF)

The following attributes are required:

  • Academic majors in atmospheric science or a related field such as the geosciences, chemistry, computer science, earth science, engineering, environmental science, mathematics, meteorology, oceanography, physics, or social and behavioral sciences, and an interest in pursuing a career in atmospheric or related STEM disciplines.
  • Completion of at least one semester of undergraduate studies remaining after the initial summer program (graduating seniors are not eligible to apply). Bachelor’s degree holders are ineligible.
  • United States Citizenship or Permanent-Resident status

Your completed SOARS application needs:

  • The NSF SOARS application 
  • Unofficial Transcripts
  • Two (2) essay questions, each with a limit of 500 words. Essay questions carry considerable weight for the application, please be thoughtful with your responses.
  • The essay questions are as follows:
  1. Academic Statement of Purpose: What are your career aspirations and how will participating in NSF SOARS help you meet these goals? If you are undecided in your career aspirations, what makes you most passionate and/or excited about learning more about this field?
  2. NSF SOARS Mission and Personal Journey: NSF SOARS is designed to broaden the participation of systematically marginalized communities in the atmospheric and related sciences. This program was created to promote and support research, mentoring, and community. Based on your identities and life experiences, (including cultural, educational, familial, social, etc.) how will you contribute to the NSF SOARS mission during and after your participation?

NOT REQUIRED but will be reviewed with other materials:

  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher; if your GPA is less than this, please address the circumstances in your essay.
  • Completed two (2) years of college, or the equivalent. Community College students and Associates’ degree holders are welcome and encouraged to apply.