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Top 15 Internships for High School Students

By Cait Williams

Cait Williams is a Content Writer at Scholarships360. Cait recently graduated from Ohio University with a degree in Journalism and Strategic Communications. During her time at OU, was active in the outdoor recreation community.

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Reviewed by Bill Jack

Bill Jack has over a decade of experience in college admissions and financial aid. Since 2008, he has worked at Colby College, Wesleyan University, University of Maine at Farmington, and Bates College.

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Edited by Maria Geiger

Maria Geiger is Director of Content at Scholarships360. She is a former online educational technology instructor and adjunct writing instructor. In addition to education reform, Maria’s interests include viewpoint diversity, blended/flipped learning, digital communication, and integrating media/web tools into the curriculum to better facilitate student engagement. Maria earned both a B.A. and an M.A. in English Literature from Monmouth University, an M. Ed. in Education from Monmouth University, and a Virtual Online Teaching Certificate (VOLT) from the University of Pennsylvania.

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Updated: April 15th, 2024
Top 15 Internships for High School Students

Looking for an internship as a high school student? While a lot of students wait until college to seek out internships, participating in one during high school is an excellent way to start exploring your career options. That’s why we’ve put together this list of some of the best internships for high school students!

Related: Why are internships important? Everything you need to know

Internships for high school students

When it comes to internships, it’s never too early to start applying. High school internships are offered by all sorts of companies. Our list below includes internships with institutions from NASA and the U.S. Secret Service, to biology and medical internships with John Hopkins!

Not to mention, listing an internship on your resume will help you stand out from the pack during the college admissions process. They might even help bolster your scholarship resume. Let’s get started!

1. NASA Internships 

NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center offers hundreds of internship opportunities across all levels of education from high school to graduate. Through the NASA Pathways Intern Employment Program (IEP), students get the chance to work and explore career paths within STEM while still in school. To be eligible, high schoolers must be at least 16 years old and be either a sophomore, junior, or senior. Check out the variety of NASA internships and start applying!

Related: How to become an astronaut

2. Met High School Internship 

The Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) offers paid internships to rising juniors and seniors from New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. The internships, which take place both during the school year and the summer, provide students the chance to network with professionals in the creative field. Interns are placed in the department that best suits their interests.

3. Indiana University Summer Research Program

This summer internship is designed for underrepresented high school students looking to pursue a career in biomedical or behavioral sciences. Interns get the chance to interact with the university’s cancer center research programs and gain exposure to a range of clinical research programs. Also included in the internship are weekly workshops offering advice on applying to graduate and professional programs. 

4. Microsoft High School Internship 

For students interested in exploring fields of study within STEM, this internship is a great launching pad. Students get the chance to connect with Microsoft employees, explore potential career paths, and develop their computer science and programming skills. 

5. Air Force Research Laboratory Scholars Program

This program with the United States Air Force is a great opportunity to get experience working with cutting edge technology and some top level scientists. During this program you will learn technical skills, be mentored by AFRL scientists and make connections with people. Visit their website and take a look at their frequently asked questions page to get a better understanding about if this program is right for you! 

6. KP Launch Internship 

The KP Launch program offers paid internships to underrepresented and low-income high school students interested in pursuing a career in healthcare. Interns will work in Oakland and a variety of medical offices across Northern California. Program participants network with healthcare professionals and get the chance to explore the many non-medical careers that are available within the healthcare industry. 

7. Scripps Student Science and Medicine Research Internship 

The Scripps Student Research Internship Program is open to high school, undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. Interns work with and learn from a multi-disciplinary team of scientists from around the world. Subjects include bioinformatics, digital medicine, genomics, and more. The SRTI student internship aims to prepare students who are interested in computational/computer science, health sciences, and statistics as the next generation of leaders in medical research. 

8. The Intern Group Global Internship Program

What better way to spend a gap year between high school and college than interning in a foreign country? Through the Intern Group’s global internship program, students aged 18 and over (in some cases 17–year-olds are eligible) can intern in one of 14 different cities around the world. Not only is this program a gateway to travel and exploration, but it’s also an excellent way to gain professional experience and make your college application stand out. Internships are available across a variety of fields. 

9. Johns Hopkins Summer Internship Program 

For anyone interested in pursuing biomedical and/or public health research, this internship is an incredible opportunity. During the 10-week program, participants develop practical skills in research and scientific experimentation. Faculty and research mentors help them along each step of the way. The program is widely inclusive. It is designed to serve low-income students, students with disabilities, and students from racial/ethnic groups underrepresented in science and medicine. 

10. Hutton Junior Fisheries Biology Program 

This paid summer internship and mentorship program is designed to stimulate interest in fisheries science among students underrepresented in the profession today. Hutton has expressed commitment to diversifying the next generation of fishery professionals by recruiting minorities and women. Whether you’re eager to learn more about fishery science or you’re looking to launch a career in the field, this internship is a great opportunity. 

11. Library of Congress Internships 

Whatever your field of interest is, chances are you can find your dream internship at the Library of Congress. From archaeological research to conservation and preservation, there’s a multitude of internship opportunities available. In fact, over 80 programs are offered throughout the Library of Congress, which is recognized as the national library of the United States and the world’s largest collection of human creativity and knowledge. 

12. Bank of America Student Leaders Program 

This 8-week paid internship provides high schoolers the chance to serve their communities by working with nonprofits like the Boys and Girls Club and Habitat for Humanity. Participants also attend the Student Leaders Summit in Washington, D.C., which offers a glimpse into how governments and businesses collaborate to meet local needs. If you’re committed to pursuing a career in government or the nonprofit sector, this internship is an excellent way to get your foot in the door. 

13. Adler Planetarium Internships 

The Adler Planetarium provides opportunities for Chicago high school students to engage with STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) and prepare for a variety of careers. From the Youth Leadership Council to the Astro-Science Workshop, there’s a range of programs catering to students with varying interests and goals. 

14. U.S. Secret Service Student Volunteer Program 

Students who participate in this internship learn about the nature of the U.S. Secret Service, the purpose of which is to protect the nation’s highest elected leaders. Although the internship is unpaid, academic credit is offered. Not to mention, it’s a great stepping stone for students interested in a career in intelligence. To apply, you must be 16 years or older. 

15. Look local!

As a high school student, especially if you don’t expect to be paid, one of the best ways to get an internship is to make a role for yourself. Find a local business or organization and volunteer to do whatever they might be doing. After helping them out for a while, you can ask if you could turn your responsibilities into a formal role and then approach them with an outline and description of duties. Most businesses will appreciate your go-getter attitude and be more likely to accept you as an intern.

Related: What is a stipend and how do they work?

Tips to get started

Prepare your application

As a high school student, you will probably be new to the application process. So, it’s a good idea to start with the basics. Learn how to write about yourself, how to prepare a resume, and how to write a cover letter for an internship. It’s a good idea to run all of your application materials past family and friends. And remember, you’ll want to tailor your resume and cover letter to suit each position you apply to. Even if the positions seem similar, making some adjustments can help maximize your chances.

Check out all available resources

While the positions on this list are all stellar opportunities, they are not the only ones available. If you’re looking for an internship for high school students, a great place to start would be resources through your high school. Some college counselors might have a list of local high school internship opportunities. You can also try contacting any family or family friends to see if they have anything you could help with.

Related: High school checklist: Freshman through senior year

Apply far and wide!

Since you’re probably new to the job application process, it’s important to keep in mind that rejection is common and to be expected. Remember, all it takes is one acceptance to end your search. You’ll probably have many unsuccessful applications before you land an opportunity. Think of it as part of the learning process; everything you’re doing will help with your career search in the future. Good luck, and while you are planning for your future, make sure you apply for all the scholarships you quality for while you are eligible!

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Frequently asked questions about internships for high school students

Can you intern at any age?

Unfortunately, internships will usually require you to be a certain age in order to apply. So, while an internship might not be a viable option because of age during your freshman and sophomore years of high school, junior and senior year is a great time to start getting some experience. However, each internship will be different, so be sure to specifically check with each place that you apply. 

Do you need a high GPA to get an internship?

Again, it depends. Some internships that are for academic credit or are more competitive, may require you to have a certain GPA. This is something you’ll want to verify with each place that you apply. You should not, however, let a slightly lower GPA deter you from applying!

Do you need experience to be an intern?

The beauty of internships is that you don’t need lots of experience to do them, especially in high school! Companies that are hiring high school students know that you likely haven’t had much time to gain experience working. So, if you don’t have any experience, that’s okay! Learn some tips on how to get an internship to get started!

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