Skip to main content

Business Unit Logo

Accelerator Engineering Fellowships for Underrepresented Minorities (ASPIRE)


Job Description


Open Date: September 1, 2021

Close Date: December 1, 2021


We are:

Fermilab is America’s premier laboratory for particle physics and accelerator research, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.  We support discovery science experiments in Illinois and South Dakota and at locations around the world, including Canada, mountaintops in Arizona and Chile, and the South Pole.

We are strategic risk takers, innovators, and collaborators. We are engineers, scientists, technicians, administrative professionals. We are 1,800 employees advancing knowledge for the benefit of humankind. Fermilab has been at the forefront of particle physics for more than 40 years. We build world-leading accelerators and detectors to conduct some of the most advanced particle physics experiments possible. We collect and analyze the data from those experiments with some of the most powerful computers in the world. We conduct this research on a 6,800-acre prairie, 35 miles outside Chicago, a treasure that has been designated a National Environmental Research Park.

The Accelerator Science Program to Increase Representation in Engineering, or ASPIRE, is a Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory fellowship providing immersive learning experiences, at Fermilab, to undergraduate and graduate (masters) engineering students, who are historically and contemporarily underrepresented in accelerator engineering fields, including Black, LatinX, and Indigenous identities, and women. ASPIRE is a partnership between Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory and Midwest colleges and universities, initially with Northern Illinois University.

The ASPIRE Fellows participate in the design, development and construction of world-leading particle accelerators, initially the PIP-II project, presently under construction at Fermilab.

Immersed in a leading-edge research and development environment through interactions with experienced, deeply knowledgeable, and often internationally renowned engineers and scientists, ASPIRE Fellows experience a lifetime opportunity to contribute to the construction of one of the most powerful particle accelerators in the world.

Under the guidance of an assigned mentor, ASPIRE Fellows realize professional growth through the acquisition of in-demand engineering skills and the establishment of professional networks within the U.S. accelerator science and technology community.

The ASPIRE Fellowship duration is fifteen to eighteen months, encompassing interleaved summers and academic year semesters. Fellows are expected to be resident at Fermilab during the summers, and possibly during portions of the academic year. Fellows are paid by Fermilab during the periods of residence.

Upon successful completion of the program, Fellows will have acquired accelerator engineering skills that will provide a platform for their future careers and/or post-graduate work in the case of undergraduate participants.

A primary goal of the ASPIRE program is to develop participants into competitive candidates for full-time employment in particle accelerator and related fields, including at Fermilab, upon Fellowship completion.


  • Undergraduate junior and senior or post-graduate (masters) engineering students who are historically and contemporarily under-represented in accelerator engineering fields, including Black, LatinX, Indigenous identities, and women
  • U.S. citizen or permanent resident at time of application
  • Full-time enrollment in a 4-year program of study (for undergraduates) at a Midwest college or university for the duration of appointment
  • Minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale

Application Procedure

Complete online application and upload the following requirements:

  • Official academic transcript
  • One letter of recommendation (provide your reference contact info on the application and we will send a link to upload the letter of recommendation)
  • Personal statement upload @Essay section
  • Provide schedule of proposed residency periods at Fermilab - you can include it on your personal statement

Fellowship Details

  • The initial application period will extend from September 1 – December 1, 2021.
  • The initial residency period will be summer of 2022.
  • Salary:
    • Junior Undergraduate: $23.00 per hour
    • Senior Undergraduate: $25.00 per hour
    • Master (year 1): $1000 per week
    • Master (year 2): $1050 per week
  • Housing: Arranged housing partially subsidized by fellowship.
  • Transportation: Paid round-trip airfare or mileage reimbursement if permanent address is more than 50 miles from Fermilab.


  • Presentation abstract
  • Oral presentation (Seminar)
  • Written research project report

All FRA employees are required to be vaccinated for COVID-19, unless the employee is legally entitled to an accommodation based on a medical condition/disability or a sincerely held religious belief.

Diverse people. Diverse jobs. Great science.
Fermilab is America’s particle physics and accelerator laboratory.
Fermilab is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Minorities/Women/Disabled/Veterans are encouraged to apply.