The University of the Virgin Islands is one of the 10 minority serving universities for cooperative agreement awards with NASA under the Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP).

The objective of the NASA-MIRO program is to "promote STEM literacy and enhance and sustain the capability of institutions to perform NASA-related research and education. The goals of the program are to expand the nation's base for aerospace research and development, increase participation by faculty and students at minority serving institutions, and increase the number of undergraduate and graduate degrees in NASA-related fields awarded to students from minority serving institutions."


Students that are seeking support from the NASA-MIRO grant must be interested in a career in science, mathematics, engineering or technology (STEM). Several opportunities are available encompassing, but not limited to, research in Astrophysics, Solar Physics, and Climate Change.

Student must have a UVI GPA of 3.0 or above. Student must be a US citizen or permanent resident, and be a full time student at UVI majoring in mathematics, applied math, chemistry, biology, marine biology, physics, or computer science. 

To apply, students should go to and complete the ECS online application. Deadline is February 28th each year.


  • Interns will be mentored by faculty at UVI and at the Etelman Observatory.
  • Bi-weekly Stipend to work with a faculty mentor on research projects
  • Summer stipends to conduct summer research with faculty at UVI or at other participating institutions. A number of summer internships are also available at NASA Centers and other research Institutions. An updated list of Internship can be found on the Etelman Observatory website.
  • Travel funding for research and to participate in national scientific meetings


David Smith, PhD
Professor of Physics, St. Thomas

Antonino Cucchiara, PhD
Asst. Professor of Physics, St. Thomas 

Luke Wentlent, PhD
Asst. Professor of Physics, St. Croix 

Jan Staff, PhD
Asst. Professor of Physics, St. Thomas

Bruce Gendre, PhD
Research Asst. Prof. of Physics, St. Thomas


David Morris, PhD
Director of the Etelman Observatory and NASA-MIRO Principal Investigator