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10 Coding Internships for High School Students

If you’re a high school student keen to work on your programming skills and knowledge, this list of 10 coding internships is for you! These internships can open doors to a number of opportunities for budding developers eager to hone their skills and dive into real-world projects. An internship experience serves not only as a platform to showcase academic prowess, but also offers the chance to learn from professionals while building a network within the industry. 

The benefits of an internship go beyond skill development – it can significantly enhance your college applications, telling admissions officers you’re dedicated and driven to pursuing your academic interests. 

We’ve compiled a list of 10 best coding internship programs for high school students. Some of these are fairly prestigious internships, and many of them provide stipends as well. 

Ladder Internships, a program founded by Harvard alumni, pairs high school students with startups and nonprofits across the world for virtual internships. Students have the flexibility to choose the field they wish to work in, from a diverse array of industries including technology, computer science, machine learning, artificial intelligence, finance, environmental science, business, healthcare, and more. 

During the program, you will work on meaningful projects aligned with the startup’s larger mission, and present your work at the end of the internship. The program includes professional training in communication and time management, as well as group training sessions with fellow interns. Each intern will be assigned a manager at their organization and a Ladder coach for additional guidance. Typically requiring 5-10 hours per week, the virtual internships span 8 weeks. 

Location: Virtual

Dates: The summer 2024 cohort starts on June 3 and runs till August. Internship opportunities are also available for fall and spring.

Cost: Starts at $1990. Financial aid is available. 

Eligibility: Open to all high school students.

Deadline: Summer cohort (regular admission 1): April 14, 2024 | Summer cohort (regular admission 2): May 12, 2024

The Summer High School Intern Program by NIST is ideal for students who have completed their junior or senior year of high school (by the start of the program) and demonstrate an interest in scientific research. During this program, you can participate in cutting-edge research at NIST and work closely with NIST staff scientists and engineers on a specific research topic. Students can choose to intern at one of these 6 NIST laboratories:

  • Communications Technology Lab

  • Engineering Lab

  • Information Technology Lab

  • Material Measurement Lab

  • NIST Center for Neutron Research 

  • Physical Measurement Lab

If you are interested in coding, we recommend opting for the Information Technology Laboratory where your areas of focus will be networking and communications, computer security, software engineering, and human interaction with computers. Your examples of area research can include computer network modeling, biometrics for computer access and security, cryptography, and digital data retrieval, just to name a few. You can look at the full list here

Location: Varies from lab to lab. 

Dates: June 17, 2024 - August 9, 2024

Cost/Stipend: No participation cost (but students must cover housing and transportation costs); Unpaid.

Eligibility: Applicants must:

  • Be U.S. citizens

  • Be juniors or seniors in high school during the application period

  • Have a minimum GPA of 3.0

Application Deadline: February 9, 2024

The Intern Project offers valuable hands-on experience in computer science, with a focus on coding. With this program, students can explore various facets of computer science, such as software development, data analytics, and more. Typically spanning multiple weeks during the summer, this project immerses participants in practical learning.

As an intern, you will be introduced to a specific theme or problem statement aligned with current industry trends. This could involve developing a mobile app addressing a social issue, designing a website for a local nonprofit, or engaging in a small-scale machine learning endeavor.

During the program, you will engage in coding tasks using languages like Python or JavaScript, utilize web development frameworks, and employ tools for data analysis and visualization. Collaboration is key, as students learn to integrate their work with others, mirroring real-world tech team dynamics. At the end of the program, you will showcase your work through presentations and demos.

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Dates: June - August

Cost/Stipend: Free. Students will receive a stipend.

Eligibility: South LA students in grades 10-12, High School DACA/Undocumented Youth, High School Foster Youth & system-involved youth. All applicants must be available to attend at least 80% of the program workshops which are after-school Thursdays 4:30-6:30pm. Majority of the program is virtual.

Deadline: March 12, every year

The Meta Summer Academy allows students to immerse themselves in the day-to-day operations of one of the world's leading social media networks, gaining hands-on experience in a dynamic work environment. This program offers a unique emphasis on coding, providing students the opportunity to develop essential technical skills while exploring potential career paths in the technology sector. With a commitment of 30 hours per week, participants will be mentored by Meta employees, gaining insight into the intersection of coding and social media platforms. Furthermore, this internship offers valuable exposure to the tech industry, with Meta providing transportation for all participants, making it accessible to students from across California. Securing an internship at Meta as a high school student is highly competitive and prestigious, with only 150 students selected for the final cohort.

Location: Menlo Park, CA

Dates: June 17, 2024 - July 26, 2024

Cost/Stipend: No cost; Students will receive a stipend upon successful completion of the six-week program.

Eligibility: High school sophomores and residents of East Palo Alto, Belle Haven, North Fair Oaks, or Redwood City.

Deadline: 1 March, 2024.

SparkSIP aims to connect high school students in the Greater Seattle area with industry experts, professors, and community leaders, offering hands-on experience in a professional setting. A program open to all high schoolers interested in CS and related disciplines, the Spark SIP program allows students to explore research opportunities in the field, interact and learn from scholars and leaders, and gain real-world experience through full-time summer internships. 

The program allows you to work on real-world applications of concepts in machine learning, computer programming, computer vision, and neural networks. Coding topics in the 2023 cohort included Python scripting for crossbar architecture, exploring spike-timing in Spiking Neural Networks (SNN), and interfacing and visualizing data. Moreover, SPARK provides opportunities and resources that can be used during and after college applications! 

Location: Greater Seattle Area

Dates: 6-8 weeks, June to August (2024 Dates TBA).

Cost/Stipend: No cost, a maximum stipend of $500 may be provided

Eligibility: High school students who can work for 40 hours/week, for 8-12 weeks. Must be U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents. 

Deadline: The applications typically close in May. 

Google's Computer Science Summer Institute (CSSI) offers an introduction to computer science (CS) for graduating high school seniors with a passion for technology — especially students from historically underrepresented groups in the field. This prestigious and competitive program is designed to be intensive, interactive, and hands-on, where participants learn programming fundamentals directly from Google engineers. As a part of CSSI, you will work in an innovative environment and gain valuable exposure and insights into Google’s internship programs and technical career opportunities. 

You will engage in classes taught by Google engineers, dive into its distinctive office culture, gain valuable mentorship from employees, and forge new friendships with fellow students, interns, and engineers. The program features a specially designed project-based curriculum. Additionally, daily development sessions are provided to help students prepare for future employment prospects in the field of technology. 

Location: Typically a residential program, virtual options are available too. 

Dates: Usually runs from June to August. 

Cost/Stipend: None

Eligibility: High school seniors planning to attend a 4-year institution in the US or Canada with a passion for computer science and intending to pursue a degree in it or a related department are eligible to participate.

Application Deadline: March (based on previous years) 

Every year, Sandia welcomes students from around the country to work in a variety of technical and business positions. As an intern, you get to work on real-world, challenging projects to contribute to critical national goals. Many of the research internships encompass a range of disciplines, including cyber security, energy surety, engineering design, and software development. Each institute provides a team to guide and mentor interns in projects aligned with their major or area of particular technical interest.

If you are interested in coding, there are many internship opportunities offered that could be relevant, such as the Comp Materials & Data Science Internship for high school students where you will work in collaborative team environments on multidisciplinary, technically challenging projects as part of a dynamic research organization. You will learn to solve complex problems involving the integration of a wide variety of technologies including servers, storage, networking, software, middleware, and all systems supporting the virtual environments. You can check all the internship opportunities for high school students offered by Sandia National Laboratories here.

Location: Varies depending on the project.

Dates: Varies from project to project.

  • Summer Internships typically run 10-12 weeks, generally from May to the last Thursday in August.

  • Co-op internships typically run 3–8 months during the academic term and may include an adjacent summer term. 

  • Year-round internships run during the academic terms, and students can work up to 25 hours a week.

Cost/Stipend: No cost; Stipend is provided. You can check the intern pay rate here.

Eligibility: Applicants must:

  • Have a U.S. citizenship

  • Be at least 16 years of age

  • Have a full-time enrollment status at a high school

  1. Year-round/co-op intern – Must be a full-time student during the academic school year (spring, fall, and winter)

  2. Summer intern – Must be a full-time student during the spring term immediately preceding the internship

  • Have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0/4.0 (for high school students applying for Research and Development (R&D), Technical, or Business positions).

Application Deadline: Varies from project to project.

Stanford's Center for Artificial Intelligence in Medicine and Imaging offers a 2-week virtual internship focused on the technical and clinical aspects of AI in healthcare. The program combines lectures on AI in healthcare fundamentals, hands-on research projects, and mentoring activities with Stanford researchers. If you’re interested, you can even opt for an extended independent research internship opportunity. While you can apply as a regular intern, you can additionally apply for the ’Student Lead’ role where you can also assist with project leadership along with an AIMI mentor.

Location: Virtual

Dates: June 17, 2024 - June 28, 2024.

Cost/Stipend: None

Eligibility: Summer Research interns must be high school students aged 14 or older (entering 9th-12th grade in Fall 2024), with California residency for student leads, U.S. residency for interns, and student leads can also be undergraduate students with a computer science background.

Deadline: March 31, 2024

SEAP offers high school students an immersive experience working in Department of Navy (DoN) laboratories, engaging in real Naval research over eight weeks in the summer. Participants delve into projects spanning cybersecurity, software development, algorithm design, and data analysis, providing opportunities to apply classroom knowledge to practical scenarios while exploring cutting-edge technologies and methodologies. 

Your lab choice is based on your subject of interest, students inclined towards coding must search accordingly! If your subject of interest is coding/programming, there are many labs where the research opportunities align with your interest like for instance, NAWCAD NAVAL AIR WARFARE CENTER AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS, Lakehurst, NJ where you can engage in hands-on experiences in advanced technologies such as electromagnetics, aviation information systems, avionics, diagnostics, unmanned aerial systems, test and evaluation, material science, modeling and simulation, jet propulsion, artificial intelligence and machine learning, cybersecurity, systems analysis, systems engineering and more!

Each student is paired with a mentor who provides guidance throughout the internship, offering invaluable insights into the world of scientific research and development. SEAP is competitive, with around 300 placements in more than 38 laboratories around the country and because of its association with the US government, it’s regarded as highly prestigious too. 

Location: There are several lab locations to choose from across the country. 

Dates: The internship lasts eight weeks during the summer (with the possibility of extending up to two additional weeks).

Cost/Stipend: No cost; New participant: $4,000 | Returning participant: $4,500

Eligibility: Applicants must be:

  • High school students who have completed at least Grade 9

  • Currently enrolled in high school (but maybe taking college-level classes for college credit)

  • Graduating seniors are eligible to apply

  • Must be 16 years of age or older by the internship start date to participate

  • Solely U.S. Citizens

(Students are recommended to check whether their preferred lab choice has any other particular requirements or exceptions).

Application Deadline: Summer internship applications open on August 1st and close on November 1st every year. 

The Google Summer of Code (GSoC) program allows new contributors to be part of open-source projects and gain real-world experience by working on a 12+ week coding project with one of ~150 open-source organizations under the guidance of dedicated mentors.

Program Goals of the GSoC include motivating developers to begin participating in open-source software development, helping open-source projects bring in new developers into their communities, and giving new contributors exposure to real-world open-source software development scenarios (e.g., testing, version control, software licensing, etc.), and creating more open source code for everyone.

Location: Virtual.

Dates: January 23 - November 17, 2024.

Cost/Stipend: No cost; Stipend is provided.

Eligibility: Candidates must:

  • Be 18 years or older on the date they register for the program.

  • Not be a resident of a United States embargoed country.

  • Be eligible to work in the country in which they reside for the duration of the program.

Application Deadline: The applications typically close in April (previous year).

One other option

If you’re interested in pursuing research in fields like computer science or AI, you could also consider applying to one of the Lumiere Research Scholar Programs, selective online high school programs for students founded with researchers at Harvard and Oxford. Last year, we had over 4000 students apply for 500 spots in the program! You can find the application form here.

Also check out the Lumiere Research Inclusion Foundation, a non-profit research program for talented, low-income students. Last year, we had 150 students on full need-based financial aid!

Stephen is one of the founders of Lumiere and a Harvard College graduate. He founded Lumiere as a PhD student at Harvard Business School. Lumiere is a selective research program where students work 1-1 with a research mentor to develop an independent research paper.

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