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Internships for High School Students

by New York University
April 15, 2024
9 min read
Deadline6 days left to apply
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Looking back on my own college application journey, I realize how important internships are for high school students and how crucial of a role they play for high schoolers in shaping potential career paths. My experiences with internships have given me priceless insights into the professional world and helped me discover my passions and areas of interest.

Internships are more than just a way to make money or pass the time during summer. They offer high school students an amazing chance to broaden their horizons and deepen their understanding of various careers. The best part about internships is that they come in all shapes and sizes. There are countless options available in various fields, catering to different interests and aspirations.

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Whether you're fascinated by space and dream of becoming a scientist, have a strong passion for healthcare and public health, or are amazed by the wonders of geosciences, there's definitely an internship waiting for you.

In this blog, we will discuss why it is so important to take advantage of these opportunities at a young age and how they might positively impact future career paths. In addition to sharing internship opportunities, we will also provide guidance on finding the right internships for you, offer tips for the application process, and give you an idea of what to expect from these experiences.

These opportunities not only introduce you to potential careers but also allow you to apply what you've learned in the classroom to real-world situations. With that being said, let's explore internship opportunities for high school students together!

You can start your journey by creating your applicant profile on, where you'll gain access to new scholarships not found anywhere else.

internship engagement

NASA's Office of STEM Engagement (OSTEM) Internship

The NASA's Office of STEM Engagement (OSTEM) summer internship program is an outstanding opportunity for any high schooler. It gives high school students interested in what's beyond the world the chance to work alongside top scientists and engineers at NASA, playing a role in their missions, scientific research, and operations. This summer program also combines hands-on experience with advanced technology in space exploration and aeronautics.

Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program

The Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program is a fantastic opportunity for young women interested in computer science and information technology.

This program provides an immersive and supportive environment where students can hone their craft and work on real-world projects. Participants are equipped with applicable coding skills and exposed to tech industry professionals, helping bridge the gender gap in the field.

Research Science Institute (RSI)

The Research Science Institute (RSI) program is organized by the Center for Excellence in Education (CEE), a renowned organization dedicated to nurturing high school students' talent and potential in science and technology.

The RSI program offers an extraordinary opportunity for students to engage in original, cutting-edge research projects, collaborate with leading scientists and scholars in their respective fields, and gain experience with the dynamics of a real-world scientific environment. Interns learn valuable research techniques for future endeavors in college or university.

Bank of America Student Leaders Program

Bank of America Student Leaders Program program offers paid internships to university students interested in community leadership and nonprofit work. The program also includes a week-long summit program, in Washington D.C., each summer where program participants can engage with influential leaders and learn about public policy and advocacy.

Disney Dreamers Academy

The Disney Dreamers Academy provides students with a broad spectrum of career opportunities at Disney. From animation and story development to operations, management, and hospitality, students get a real-life view of potential career paths within the company.

At the heart of the program is leadership training. Students will participate for five weeks in interactive workshops and activities aimed at enhancing their leadership skills. They'll engage in team-building exercises, problem-solving activities, research, field trips, lectures, and communication drills that are designed to prepare students and shape them into effective leaders.

interning internationally

International Internships

If you're interested in exploring opportunities outside of your own country, consider international internships. These programs offer a unique experience to immerse yourself in different cultures and work environments. They provide a global perspective that is highly valued in today's interconnected world.

Institution-Based Internships

Many renowned research institutions also offer their own institution-based internship programs. For example, the Smithsonian Institution program has programs specifically designed for high school and university students, allowing them to explore fields like art, the arts, history, fisheries, science, engineering, and science and zoology.

These are just a few examples of the top internship programs and opportunities available. It's important to note that there are many other paid summer internship options out there as well.

Some programs may have specific requirements or a competitive application process, but there are also many inclusive programs available. The key is to find an internship that aligns with your interests and future goals.

Internships are valuable stepping stones towards your dream career, whether you're interested in space exploration, computer science, environmental science or fascinated by different cultures. Don't wait - start exploring these opportunities today!

Why Should High School Students Pursue Internships?

While it's true that internships can enhance your college applications and resume, their benefits for high schoolers go beyond that. Here are three reasons why students should pursue internships during high school:

  1. Personal Growth: Internships provide an opportunity for self-discovery and personal growth. Through real-world experiences, you can gain a better understanding of your strengths, weaknesses, and interests.
  2. Professional Development: By working alongside professionals in your chosen field, you can learn valuable industry-specific skills and knowledge that may not be taught in the classroom.
  3. Building Connections: Networking is essential in today's job market, and internships allow you to start building your professional network early on. The connections you make during your internship can potentially lead to future job opportunities or mentorship.
all sorts of internships

Exploring Different Fields: Internships in STEM, Healthcare, and Geosciences

Internships give high school students a special opportunity to see how different careers work up close. They can choose from a variety of fields, each with its own advantages that can shape their education and future job choices.

STEM Internships

  • Hands-on Experience: In STEM internships, students get to use math and science in real-life situations. This helps them understand these subjects better.
  • Innovation and Creativity: Students often work on new and exciting projects, which helps them become more creative and better at solving problems.
  • Career Clarification: By exploring jobs in technology, engineering, or research, students can figure out if a career in STEM is right for them.

Healthcare Internships

  • Patient Care Skills: Interns develop empathy and communication skills by interacting with patients and healthcare professionals.
  • Understanding Healthcare Systems: Navigating the complex world of healthcare gives interns an inside look at different career options in the industry.
  • Scientific Application: Seeing how scientific knowledge is used in real-life medical situations helps interns connect their studies to actual patient care.

Geosciences Internships

  • Environmental Impact: Students learn about sustainability and how to protect the environment, gaining knowledge about global issues.
  • Fieldwork Experience: Unlike regular classroom learning, geoscience internships often involve outdoor activities that let students explore Earth's systems firsthand.
  • Research Skills Development: Analyzing geological data improves critical thinking abilities and may inspire students to pursue further education or careers in geosciences.

Each field offers students, graduates, and even faculty their own unique opportunities for personal growth and academic success. High school students can see for themselves how professionals in these industries overcome challenges every day, gaining valuable insights that go beyond what they can learn from books alone.

If you are looking to learn more about the professions and fields that interest you, the Scholarship Blog offers a ton of beneficial information and resources!

Embarking on the journey of finding academic year or summer internships for high school students can seem daunting. However, with a clear understanding of where to look for intern opportunities and how to apply, it becomes a manageable task.

1. Utilize Online Platforms

Online platforms have made it easier than ever to find internship opportunities across various industries. Internship databases such as Chegg Internships and Glassdoor offer listings specifically tailored for high school students.

Similarly, many companies maintain comprehensive websites that provide details about program participants and their internship programs, including eligibility criteria and application procedures.

2. Leverage Your Network

Strong networking skills can also make a significant difference in securing a meaningful internship. Don't hesitate to reach out to teachers, counselors, or family friends who might have connections with potential internship providers. Remember that every conversation could lead to an opportunity.

3. Create an Impressive Application

Crafting a strong application is crucial in applying for college admissions and high school internships.

Your application should clearly communicate your interest in the field, as well as any relevant skills or experiences that make you a strong candidate. This includes creating an effective resume that highlights your academic achievements, extracurricular activities, and any previous work experience.

When writing your cover letter, be sure to express your enthusiasm for the role and how this experience would contribute towards your career goals. A well-crafted application can be instrumental in setting you apart from other candidates.

Internships for High School

Making the Most Out of Your High School Internship Experience

Maximizing learning during your summer programs and high school internships and standing out as a high school student and intern requires a proactive approach. Here are key strategies to enhance your senior year summer internship and experience:

Set Clear Goals

Identify Objectives

Begin by setting specific, measurable goals for what you want to achieve during your internship. Are you aiming to master a particular software, understand a business process, or develop public speaking skills? Having clear targets will give your internship purpose and direction.

Seek Regular Feedback

Engage with your supervisor to discuss your progress towards these goals. Ask for feedback on your performance and use it constructively to refine your skills and approach.

Take Initiative

Explore the Organization

Show eagerness to learn by asking questions and observing different aspects of the organization's operations. This shows your interest in understanding the bigger picture beyond just your assigned tasks.

Volunteer for Projects

If volunteer opportunities do arise, volunteer for new projects within your organization. This can expose you to different roles within the organization and demonstrate your willingness to participate, contribute, participate, and learn.

Build Professional Relationships

Connect with Mentors

Seek out individuals whose careers align with your interests and ask them about their professional journey. Their insights and professional experience can provide valuable guidance for your own career path.

Network with Peers

Interact with other interns, students, faculty, and employees at the university at all levels. These connections can be invaluable resources for future internship opportunities and for research and professional development.

By implementing these strategies, you not only enrich your own experience, but also add value to the organization and young individuals you're interning with. Your proactive attitude can make a lasting impression on employers and like-minded peers, positioning you as a motivated and capable young professional.

Looking for internships or part-time jobs? Check out these jobs to apply for while in college!

internships for high school student

Frequently Asked Questions about Internships for High School Students

How early should I start looking for high school student internships?

It's wise to begin your search at least 3-6 months before you hope to start the internship. This gives you ample time to research opportunities, prepare your application materials, and reach out to potential mentors or organizations.

Careful planning is key. Look for internships with flexible hours or those that align with your school holidays. Explore potential career paths to decide what program might work for you!

What if I don't have any work experience?

Internships are often designed as an introduction to the workforce. Highlight your academic achievements, extracurricular activities, volunteer work, research projects, and any relevant skills or projects instead.

What should I do if my first-choice internship doesn't accept me?

Use it as a learning experience; seek feedback on how you can improve for next time. Stay proactive and continue exploring other opportunities—each application is a chance to gain exposure and refine your technical skills and approach.

Remember, securing an internship is just one step in a larger journey toward personal growth and professional development. With each application, you move closer to finding the right opportunity that will pave the way for future success.

Looking for more ways to enrich your academic and professional experience? Check out a variety of scholarships that you, as graduate students, can apply for right now!

New York University
Content Writer

About Jasmine

Jasmine is a dynamic writer and researcher with experience in college essay and personal statement writing, standardized testing (SAT), and building resumes for college applications. Her diverse skill set and dedication to helping students succeed make her an invaluable resource for those navigating the college admissions process.

Jasmine is currently a student at New York University majoring in Politics and Online/Print Journalism. She has been honored with the NYU Expository Writing Program Josh Goldfaden award for her efforts in fostering a positive community of peer writers. 

She is also a contributing writer for the New York University Paper, Washington Square News and specializes in "The Science of Reading" as a tutor educator as well.

Jasmine is no longer with the Writing Team, but we continue to value and appreciate her contributions.

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