Searching for an internship as a high school student? While many students typically wait until college to pursue internships, engaging in one during high school can be an excellent avenue for exploring potential career options. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best internships tailored for high school students.
Top Internship Opportunities for High School Students
Embarking on the journey of internships? It’s never too early to begin applying, and high school students have a plethora of opportunities available. Our curated list spans internships with esteemed institutions such as NASA and the U.S. Secret Service, along with engaging options in biology and medical fields with John Hopkins!
Moreover, featuring an internship on your resume can significantly enhance your profile, setting you apart during the college admissions process and potentially strengthening your scholarship portfolio. Let’s dive in and explore the possibilities!
1. NASA Internships
Explore the cosmos through internship opportunities at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, offering a myriad of options for students from high school to graduate level. Engage with STEM career paths while still in school through the NASA Pathways Intern Employment Program (IEP). Eligible high school students, ranging from sophomores to seniors and at least 16 years old, can delve into a variety of NASA internships. Explore the possibilities and kick start your application journey!
Presented by the Zuckerman Institute’s Brain Research Apprenticeships in New York at Columbia (BRAINYAC), this internship offers a unique opportunity for 10th and 11th graders in NYC. It entails an immersive summer lab internship providing hands-on experience in collaboration with scientists. The program revolves around a rigorous six-week neuroscience research experience during the winter, extending into a full-time internship throughout the summer. BRAINYAC supports various partner programs, and applications and requirements may differ for each.
3. Geosciences Bridge Program
Tailored for high school seniors, the Geosciences Bridge Program, supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation, offers a six-week paid internship. This opportunity allows graduating seniors to delve into marine geology, physical oceanography, atmospheric science, marine biology, marine chemistry, biogeochemistry, and remote sensing/GIS through hands-on activities. Participants reside on the University of Maryland Eastern Shore campus, fostering a unique living and learning environment as they collaborate with peers who have recently graduated from high school.
4. Indiana University Summer Research Program
Designed for underrepresented high school students aspiring to venture into biomedical or behavioral sciences, this summer internship at Indiana University offers an immersive experience. Interact with the university’s cancer center research programs and gain exposure to a diverse range of clinical research initiatives. The program also includes weekly workshops, providing valuable insights and advice on navigating the path towards graduate and professional programs. Dive into the world of research and broaden your horizons with this enriching summer opportunity.
5. MET High School Internship
The MET presents paid internships tailored for rising juniors and seniors hailing from New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. These internships, available throughout the school year and summer, offer students a unique opportunity to network with professionals in the creative field. Interns are strategically placed in departments aligned with their interests, providing a hands-on experience in their chosen realm.
6. Microsoft High School Internship
For students eager to explore STEM fields, the Microsoft High School Internship serves as an ideal Launchpad. Participants connect with Microsoft professionals, delve into potential career paths, and enhance their computer science and programming skills.
7. Plant Genome Research REU
Boyce Thompson Institute (BTI), in collaboration with Cornell University and the USDA, offers valuable summer internships for undergraduates and high school students. This program presents an excellent opportunity to gain hands-on research experience and explore the potential of a scientific career in plant science research and bioinformatics. Participants contribute to advancing BTI’s missions, focusing on enhancing food security, promoting environmental sustainability in agriculture, and making fundamental discoveries to improve human life. Students receive a competitive stipend paid biweekly throughout the internship.
8. KP Launch Internship
Tailored for underrepresented and low-income high school students with an interest in healthcare careers, the KP Launch program offers paid internships. Interns are stationed in Oakland and various medical offices across Northern California, providing an opportunity to network with healthcare professionals and explore diverse non-medical careers within the healthcare industry.
9. Air Force Research Laboratory Scholars Program
Collaborating with the United States Air Force, this program presents an exceptional opportunity to gain hands-on experience with cutting-edge technology and work alongside top-tier scientists. Engage in technical skill development, mentorship from AFRL scientists, and establish valuable connections. Explore the program further on their website and peruse the frequently asked questions page to determine if it aligns with your aspirations.
10. Scripps Student Science and Medicine Research Internship
Open to high school, undergraduate, graduate, and professional students, the Scripps Student Research Internship Program offers an immersive experience. Interns collaborate and learn from a multi-disciplinary team of global scientists, delving into subjects such as bioinformatics, digital medicine, genomics, and more. Aimed at preparing the next generation of leaders in medical research, this internship focuses on computational/computer science, health sciences, and statistics.
11. Johns Hopkins Summer Internship Program
This internship is an exceptional opportunity for those interested in biomedical and/or public health research. Spanning 10 weeks, participants gain practical skills in research and scientific experimentation with guidance from faculty and research mentors. The program is inclusively designed to serve low-income students, individuals with disabilities, and those from racial/ethnic groups underrepresented in science and medicine.
12. New-York Historical Society’s Student Historian Program
The New-York Historical Society’s Student Historian Program invites interns to leverage its resources for compelling research and the creation of innovative projects. Participants delve into the museum, library, and history fields, interacting with professional staff to gain insights into potential careers. Collaborating with peers, interns enhance their public speaking and leadership skills, immersing themselves in hands-on activities to deepen their understanding of American history and art. While the internship is typically unpaid for most students, those attending a Title 1 school or eligible for free or reduced lunch may receive a stipend for their participation.
13. Hutton Junior Fisheries Biology Program
Stimulate your interest in fisheries science with this paid summer internship and mentorship program. Committed to diversifying the next generation of fishery professionals, Hutton actively recruits minorities and women. Whether you’re looking to explore fishery science or launch a career in the field, this internship offers a valuable opportunity.
14. The Intern Group Global Internship Program
Embark on a transformative gap year by participating in The Intern Group’s Global Internship Program. Designed for students aged 18 and above (with eligibility for some 17-year-olds), this program offers internships in 14 cities worldwide. Beyond providing an avenue for travel and exploration, it offers valuable professional experience, making your college application stand out. Internship opportunities span various fields, providing a comprehensive and enriching experience.
15. Library of Congress Internships
Explore your dream internship at the Library of Congress, where over 80 programs span various fields, from archaeological research to conservation and preservation. As the national library of the United States, housing the world’s largest collection of human creativity and knowledge, the Library of Congress offers unparalleled opportunities.
16. Washington Performing Arts Internship
Tailored for students with a passion or background in the performing arts, the Washington Performing Arts Internship offers an opportunity to develop professional skills and gain insights into arts management. Interns, compensated with a small stipend, dedicate approximately 15 hours per week over a 12-week period. Additionally, interns receive invitations to attend numerous Washington Performing Arts performances at no cost.
17. Adler Planetarium Internships
Chicago high school students can engage with STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) and prepare for various careers through opportunities at the Adler Planetarium. From the Youth Leadership Council to the Astros-Science Workshop, a range of programs caters to students with diverse interests and goals.
18. Bank of America Student Leaders Program
This 8-week paid internship empowers high school students to serve their communities by collaborating with nonprofits like the Boys and Girls Club and Habitat for Humanity. Participants attend the Student Leaders Summit in Washington, D.C., gaining insights into how governments and businesses collaborate to meet local needs. Ideal for those aspiring to careers in government or the nonprofit sector.
19. U.S. Secret Service Student Volunteer Program
Participants in this internship gain insights into the U.S. Secret Service, dedicated to protecting the nation’s highest elected leaders. Although unpaid, the program offers academic credit and serves as a valuable stepping stone for students interested in a career in intelligence. Applicants must be 16 years or older.
20. Carnegie Museums Internships
Explore unpaid, in-person internships across all four Carnegie Museums—the Carnegie Museum of Art, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Carnegie Science Center, and The Andy Warhol Museum. These opportunities empower high school students to engage in either public-facing or behind-the-scenes roles. Regardless of the chosen museum, interns depart with invaluable work experience, a diverse skill set, and an expanded professional network.
As a high school student, especially if unpaid, creating an internship opportunity for yourself is a proactive approach. Volunteer with a local business or organization, demonstrate your capabilities, and propose formalizing your role into an internship. Most businesses appreciate a go-getter attitude and are likely to accept you as an intern after witnessing your commitment.
How do prepare your application to start your Internship Journey?
As a high school student venturing into the world of internships, mastering the application process is key. Start with the basics—learn how to effectively articulate your skills, create a compelling resume, and craft a tailored cover letter. Seeking input from family and friends can provide valuable insights. Remember, customization is key; adapt your resume and cover letter for each position, even if they appear similar. Personalizing your application materials can significantly enhance your chances.
While the internships listed here are exceptional opportunities, they represent just a fraction of what’s out there. Begin your search by tapping into resources available through your high school. College counselors often compile lists of local high school internship opportunities. Additionally, reaching out to family or family friends can uncover hidden gems. Cast a wide net and explore diverse avenues to maximize your chances of finding the perfect opportunity.
Apply Far and Wide
Embrace the reality that rejection is part of the job application process, especially for someone new to the scene. It’s crucial to apply to numerous positions, understanding that each rejection brings you one step closer to an acceptance. Remember, securing just one opportunity can mark the end of your search. Treat unsuccessful applications as valuable learning experiences; each attempt contributes to your growth and prepares you for future career pursuits. Best of luck! As you plan for your future, ensure you apply for all scholarships you qualify for while you’re still eligible!