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10 Geosciences Internships for High School Students

If you love to learn about rocks, volcanos, and geological processes, then geosciences may be for you! Although geological sciences may not be a widely taught subject in high schools, there are plenty of internships that you can explore. Unlike clubs and summer programs, internships will help you gain work experience, and many of them provide a paid stipend or hourly rate to their interns, which can help your future college application unique compared to your peers.


Interested?


Here are 10 geosciences internship opportunities available to ambitious high school students!


Funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and NOAA Living Marine Resources Cooperative Science Center (LMRCSC) at University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES), the Geoscience Bridge program introduces high school seniors to ocean sciences, atmospheric sciences, and geographic information systems (GIS)/Remote Sensing techniques. This 6-week paid internship is a great opportunity for students who want to pursue a career in the geosciences, and provides engaging activities such as lectures, field trips, accredited college courses, housing, meals, and travel to and from UMES. The program is unique for many benefits it offers to students while also immersing them into the exciting field of geosciences.


We have covered this program in detail here!


Selectivity: High

Location: University of Maryland Eastern Shore in Princess Anne, Maryland

Costs: None, $500/week stipend provided along with room and board

Eligibility:

  • US citizen or permanent resident.

  • Graduating high school seniors with a minimum of 2.7 GPA.

  • Planning to pursue a bachelor’s degree in a geoscience discipline.

    • Includes atmospheric science, engineering (civil, electrical, environmental, ocean), environmental science, geography, marine biology, marine chemistry/biogeochemistry, marine geology, marine science, meteorology, physical oceanography, remote sensing/GIS, etc.

  • Priority consideration given to students planning to attend a NOAA Cooperative Science Center academic partner.

  • Application must be submitted before deadline – not open yet for 2024, but will most likely be due in mid-April 2024.

Deadline: Not yet open for 2024 cycle, but most likely will run from late June to early August.


Taking place over the course of 9 weeks in the summer, high school students from New York State may have the chance to write a research report about the environment, which can be published later on (past works available here). A typical day may entail morning meetings at the BFS Main Lab to coordinate daily activities, equipment, and vehicle needs before diving into working on your own project. By the end of the summer, you will have experienced field work, laboratory analyses, data analysis, writing, and many other things. In addition, there will be weekly seminars and course credit, and while housing is not available for non-graduating high school students, there will be daily shuttles to and from the SUNY Oneonta Main Campus.


Selectivity: Very High

Location: SUNY Oneonta campus, Biological Field Station

Costs: None – fully funded by the program.

Eligibility:

  • High school students located in New York State.

    • At least one position will be awarded to a resident of Otsego County, NY, although students from locales outside of Otsego County are encouraged to apply.

  • Must be available for the full duration of the internship, which will run from late May through August.

Deadline: Not yet open for 2024 cycle, will likely be open in January and close in mid-March 2024.



Are you interested in fisheries and aquatic science? For those with a passion for environmental science in the aquatics field, the Hutton Junior Fisheries Biology program will provide you with a summer internship experience that includes establishing aquatic vegetation and fish habitat, water quality testing, data processing, and much more! An accepted scholar will be matched with a suitable mentor in the student’s area who can help them in their internship activities. The program will take place over eight weeks starting from June and ending in late July or August, and Hutton scholars will receive a total of $3,000 in stipend.


Selectivity: High

Location: United States of America – most likely in an area near you

Costs: None, with $3,000 stipend

Eligibility:

  • High school students moving into their junior, senior, or college freshman year.

  • Located in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, Canada, Mexico, and the Pacific Islands.

Deadline: January 16th, 2024, with applications opening on November 14, 2023.



The University of North Carolina Institute for the Environment offers a high school student science environment program, and is designed to connect students with and learn from geoscientists while engaging with their peers. Rising 12th-grade high school students in Robeson County will spend 4 weeks in the summer investigating the natural world through fun field trips and hands-on activities while preparing for a job, career, or college degree in geoscience or STEM. The program is completely free, with a stipend and housing provided.


Selectivity: High

Location: Robeson Early College High School, University of North Carolina, Chapel-Hill

Costs: None, with $1,275 stipend

Eligibility:

  • Rising 12th grade Robeson County students.

    • Priority consideration given to Robeson Early College High School students.

  • Must be 18 years old to come to UNC campus.

    • Those of 17 years old are welcome to apply.

  • Must receive a nomination from a teacher or adult mentor.

Deadline: Not yet open, but nomination deadline most likely due in early May.



The United States Geological Survey conducts extensive research into natural hazards from ecosystems and the environment, which makes it a prestigious place to work for. The USGS Internship Program will help students work in agencies and explore federal careers, and will pay them for their time. While the duration of the internship may different, you will most likely be appointed to work on a temporary basis that will last less than a year. You may be assigned to work on short-term projects, although the website does not indicate the nature of these assignments.


Selectivity: High.

Location: Depends on positions available.

Costs: None, with $1,275 stipend

Eligibility:

  • Open to all students in high school.

  • At least 16 years of age.

  • Have a satisfactory academic record of 2.0 or better GPA.

  • You should be a US citizen.

  • Meet the qualification requirements for the position and submit all required documentation.

Deadline: Rolling.



The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration frequently posts on their website several opportunities for high school students pursuing internships. While the details may differ from program to program, you may expect to be engaged in a variety of fields related to geosciences such as earth science, coastal ecosystems, weather services, and more! For example, a project you might join is working with fish populations in fish hatcheries, or identifying molecular biomarkers for contaminant exposure. Take a look today and apply early to the ones that interest you.


Selectivity: Moderate to High

Location: Depends on positions available.

Costs: Depends on positions available.

Eligibility: Depends on positions available.

Deadline: Rolling.



If you find yourself more interested in the explosive field of volcano science, then perhaps you’d like to work in an internship offered by the Volcanic and Magmatic Studies Group. Some internships like Colima Intercambio e Investigación en Vulcanología (CIIV) may range from 2 months, where you’ll be developing a dynamic model to explain Volcán de Colima’s behavior in Mexico. Others, like the INVOLCAN Summer Science Training Program, may take 4 weeks in the Canary Islands, where you’ll gain extensive research experience.


Selectivity: Moderate to High

Location: Depends on positions available.

Costs: Depends on positions available, may range from 50 euros per day to 1000 euros in total.

Eligibility: Depends on positions available.

Deadline: Rolling / Not listed. Must email program organizers for more information.



As an international collaboration between Greenland, the United States, and Denmark, JSEP provides a select group of high school students the opportunity to study polar environments and the human dimensions of rapid Arctic change. Some will engage in a 3-week field-based program in Greenland, while others will participate in a data-focused and hands-on remote experience led by Dartmouth University. The field-based program will take place from late June into July 2024, while the remote program will take place late July or August 2024.


Selectivity: Moderate to High

Location: Greenland, or remote.

Costs: None, fully funded.

Eligibility:

  • Remote:

    • Must be a high school junior at the time of application.

    • Must be a U.S. citizen.

  • Field program:

    • Must be a U.S. citizen.

    • Have completed the JSEP Remote program.

    • Will be 18 (but not 19+) on June 1, 2024.

Deadline: Not yet open, applications will be available starting from Dec 2023.



If you’re based in the Boyle Heights neighborhood in Los Angeles, then perhaps the Marine Science Teen Internship Program may be for you. Ten interns from Math, Science, & Technology Magnet Academy, Theodore Roosevelt High School, and Felicitas & Gonzalo Mendez High School (eight who are high school juniors or seniors who are entering into the program for the first time, and two who are returning from the previous cohort as Peer Mentors) will engage in museum research, collections, interpretation, program development, and facilitation at the Natural History Museum. Not only will they be paid Museum employees in the summer, but also they will develop a marine science-related project. Therefore, this internship is a great place to hone practical skills and make valuable connections within the Museum.


Selectivity: Moderate to High.

Location: Natural History Museum and various locations throughout L.A. County.

Costs: None.

Eligibility:

  • Juniors and seniors at the Math, Science, & Technology Magnet Academy, Theodore Roosevelt High School, and Felicitas & Gonzalo Mendez High School in Boyle Heights, Los Angeles.

  • Possesses a work permit and proof of authorization to work in the U.S.

Deadline: Not yet open, applications will be available starting from February 2024.


ASSIP, which is organized by George Mason University, is an internship program where high school students may work one-on-one with faculty researchers. There are many mentors in the Atmospheric, Oceanic and Earth Sciences field, where their field of expertise can range from modeling wildfires to gathering weather statistics. The internship may range from being in-person, hybrid, to fully remote for 8 weeks (June 18th-Aug. 9th, 2024), so you have a lot of opportunities to tailor what your internship may look like. By the end of the program, you will have compiled your own research paper, and you can take a sneak peek at some past abstracts here.


Selectivity: Moderate to High.

Location: George Mason University or remote.

Costs: $25 application fee, unpaid internship.

Eligibility:

  • Minimum age of 15 years by June 18th for remote, in-person, and hybrid internships in computer labs.

  • Minimum age of 15 years by June 18 for "wet-lab" in-person or hybrid internships.

Deadline: Not yet open, applications will be available starting from November 29th, 2023.


One other option – Lumiere Research Scholar Program

If you are interested in doing university-level research in STEM, then you could also consider applying to the Lumiere Research Scholar Program, a selective online high school program 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.


Lydia is currently a junior at Harvard University, studying Molecular and Cellular Biology. In high school, she was the captain of her high school’s Academic Decathlon team and attended the Governor's School of Engineering and Technology. In her spare time, she likes to create digital art while listening to music.


Image Source: University of Maryland logo


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