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10 Summer Computer Science Internships for High School Students

Internships are important to curating real-world skills in the careers that students are interested in. Specifically, for students interested in computer science, computer science internships would provide them with the opportunity to using coding outside of the classroom for problem solving and challenges that those in the field work on. 


Furthermore, opportunities of this sort would look great on your resume! Future employers will see that these skills were built early on and you have the experience they are looking for. You’ll be able to use these skills in any personal or professional research that you pursue, and additionally, applying to professional experiences early on can give you a boost while applying to college. College admissions officers will be able to identify your genuine interest in the subject, something that they have often indicated they are looking for when it comes to applicants. 


Stipend: Stipend provided, but amount is not specified

Location: Various locations across the country with each internship

Program Dates: While internships can go on all year long, these are the summer internship dates: 

  • late May/early June to August (~ 10 weeks)

Eligibility: 

  • U.S. Citizens

  • Minimum GPA of 3.0


NASA’s Office of STEM Engagements has internship openings available at all their locations throughout the U.S. For those living close to a NASA center, there’s an option to intern at a local research facility. If you’re not nearby, NASA also offers virtual internships. To find specific opportunities for high school students, you'll need to filter their internship database.


This program allows students to gain practical experience in computer science applications. It’s particularly advantageous for high schoolers who plan to study computer science in college, as participation can greatly improve their college applications thanks to NASA's prestigious reputation.


Stipend: Upon completion of the program, students will receive a stipend

Location: California

Application Deadline: Applications for summer 2025 will open December 2024. They closed March 1 this year.

Program Dates: mid-June to late July (6 weeks)

Eligibility: 

  • Sophomores in high school during application year

  • Full-year residents of East Palo Alto, Belle Haven, North Fair Oaks, or Redwood City

  • 2.0+ GPA


Securing a spot in the Meta Summer Academy as a high school student is highly esteemed due to the competitive selection process, with only 150 students chosen for the final cohort, making it a prestigious opportunity. The Meta Summer Academy, previously known as the Facebook Summer Academy, allows students to understand the daily functions of one of the top social media platforms within a vibrant workforce environment. During the program, students will learn about Meta's various processes and protocols while actively participating in daily operations. Open to all California residents, Meta provides transportation assistance for all externs.


Participants will engage in coding, explore diverse career paths, and develop essential soft skills for future achievements. The main goal is to inspire young people to seek economic success, stability, and growth through skill-building and early career exploration in technology. A commitment of 30 hours per week is required from the participants. Throughout the program, current Meta employees will mentor participants, offering valuable guidance and insights. This role also provides exposure to potential career opportunities in the tech industry.


Stipend: Stipends are dependent on the project, as some projects offer stipends and others do not. 1 project offers a stipend, and the other provides airfare.

Location: Seattle, WA

Application Deadline: Applications are closed for this summer. Applications for the 2024 cycle opened in April and closed in May, so check the website for updates next spring.

Program Dates: Dates are dependent on project.

Eligibility:

  • Must be a U.S. high school student at the time of application


The mission of SparkSIP is to connect high school students in the Greater Seattle area with industry experts, professors from esteemed institutions, and community leaders, providing them with exposure to professional environments. SparkSIP allows applicants to choose 1-5 projects they are interested in, with sponsors assigned to selected students (with only 5-6 students receiving mentorship). The program also provides resources and opportunities for use during and after college applications.


This program offers high school students the chance to apply concepts in machine learning, artificial intelligence, and data visualization to real-world scenarios. It also provides opportunities to interact with and learn from industry leaders, university professors, and mentors. Topics covered in the 2023 cohort included preparing Python scripts for crossbar architecture and exploring its non-idealities, understanding the impact of spike-timing and spike rate on Spiking Neural Networks (SNN), and interfacing and visualizing data.


Cost: No participation cost, but students will have to cover their own housing and transportation costs.

Location: Various locations between labs.

Application Deadline: Applications closed in February this year.

Program Dates: Based on 2024 dates, June 17 - August 9.

Eligibility: 

  • Must be U.S. citizens

  • Be juniors or seniors during the application period

  • 3.0+ GPA


NIST's Summer High School Intern Program is designed for students who have finished their junior or senior year of high school and have a keen interest in scientific research. During the program, participants engage in advanced research at NIST, working closely with staff scientists and engineers on various research projects.


Students can intern at one of six NIST laboratories:

- Communications Technology Lab

- Engineering Lab

- Information Technology Lab

- Material Measurement Lab

- NIST Center for Neutron Research

- Physical Measurement Lab


The Information Technology Laboratory is recommended for those interested in computer science. This lab focuses on areas such as networking and communications, computer security, software engineering, and human-computer interaction. Research projects include computer network modeling, biometric systems for computer access and security, cryptographic methods, and digital data retrieval. A detailed list of research areas is available here.


Stipend: Varies by location.

Location: Almost every state has an AEOP program. Transportation, meals, and housing are not provided. 

Application Deadline: Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Check here for application dates.

Program Dates: All locations offer a summer internship, but specific dates vary by location.

Eligibility: 

  • Current high school students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents

  • Check additional eligibility requirements per location here.


This program provides the chance to work closely with a university researcher or a Department of Defense (DoD) scientist mentor on various research projects. Interns will have the opportunity to use advanced equipment and state-of-the-art laboratory facilities, while also gaining insights from experienced scientists and engineers. Moreover, you will interact with other STEM practitioners throughout the duration of the internship. The research projects, sponsored by the Army, tackle significant challenges facing the USA, offering interns valuable experience in critical thinking, problem-solving, and teamwork—skills essential for a STEM career.


For those interested in computer science, there are research opportunities involving coding, AI, and ML applications. For example, you might work on projects with the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, focusing on GNC Research using the Julia Programming Language, or with the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Army Research Laboratory in Boston. More information about AEOP's Summer 2024 opportunities can be found here.


6. NASA Office of Stem Engagements (OSTEM) Internships 

Stipend: Stipends are awarded based on academic level and duration of session. 

Location: Internships are offered across 10 field centers across the country

Application Deadline: April/May for the summer session.

Program Dates: The summer program last 10 weeks between late May or early June to August. 

Eligibility: 

  • In grades 10-12

  • 3.0+ GPA

  • U.S. Citizenship


NASA’s Office of STEM Engagement (OSTEM) offers paid internships to both high school and college students across its various locations nationwide.


Each year, these internships provide training, mentorship, and career development to over 2000 students, giving them access to top professionals in fields like science, engineering, finance, IT, and business. The opportunities cover a diverse range of subjects and disciplines, including space science, aeronautics, technology, machine learning, computer science, and outreach and communications. Interns participate in designing experiments, analyzing mission data, and developing new technologies.


To find internships with computer science opportunities, you can use the 'Filter' option to view positions available to high school students.


Stipend: Weekly stipends are provided based on the education of the students (GS pay scale).

Location: AFRL Scholar internship opportunities are available across different locations in the US.

Application Deadline: Applications typically close in January.

Program Dates: Because the program offers internships all year, some fall in summer.

Eligibility:

  • Be U.S. Citizens

  • Be enrolled or accepted at an educational institution taking at least a half-time academic course load leading to a degree or certificate for the semester immediately preceding the internship session. 

  • Have a GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. 

  • Be 16 years of age by application deadline with a valid government ID.


The AFRL Scholars Program offers a paid internship opportunity specifically designed for upper-level high school students interested in aerospace engineering. Upon acceptance into the program, participants receive mentorship from full-time AFRL scientists and engineers, including tours of AFRL laboratories and involvement in cutting-edge research and technology projects. Each mentor involved in the program brings extensive expertise, and a list of mentors can be found here.


While AFRL research primarily focuses on aerospace engineering, certain projects, such as 'Advanced Robot Controller Design and Implementation' or 'AI Opponents for Contested Space,' incorporate computer science applications. These projects involve data processing and control to design, develop, and implement solutions using either Python or C++.


Stipend: Salary of $17.20/hr.

Location: Fermilab site in Illinois 

Application Deadline: The application for 2025 summer positions will open November 2024.

Program Dates: mid-June to late July

Eligibility:

  • High school sophomores or juniors

  • Enrolled in an Illinois high school

  • 3.0+ GPA average

  • Eligible to work in the US


The TARGET program provides a rigorous six-week summer internship opportunity aimed at high school sophomores and juniors hailing from Illinois. It is tailored for individuals showcasing a robust interest and proven proficiency in physics, mathematics, computer science, and engineering. The program's objective is to motivate high school students to pursue higher education and careers in STEM fields.


Annually, the TARGET program admits around 15-25 interns, ensuring a highly competitive selection process. The program integrates both practical work experience and experiential learning elements. Interns get to engage in collaborative projects with scientists and engineers at Fermilab.


Stipend: Students are paid (stipend not specified) and earn college credit after finishing the program.

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Application Deadline: Applications open March 2025.

Program Dates: June to August (~ 8 weeks)

Eligibility:

  • High school students completing their sophomore, junior, or senior year enrolled in an LA county high school


The Intern Project offers high school students in LA a valuable opportunity to gain practical work experience, explore diverse career paths, and develop crucial skills for success in the workforce. Throughout the program, students are placed in internships where they can explore potential career paths and acquire hands-on skills beyond the classroom. Working alongside industry professionals, interns immerse themselves in professional environments, gaining insights into workplace dynamics while enhancing their soft skills such as professionalism, time management, communication, and teamwork.


Interns engage in projects centered around current industry trends and challenges, tackling themes or problem statements relevant to the tech sector. Tasks range from developing mobile applications for social impact to creating websites for local non-profits or undertaking machine learning projects. Utilizing languages like Python or JavaScript, interns work with web development frameworks and data analysis tools, gaining insights into real-world tech team dynamics. Upon completing their projects, interns have the opportunity to showcase demos of their work, highlighting their achievements and skills.


Stipend: Housing, meals, and transportation are not covered. Stipends for new participants are $4,000 and for returning students, they are $4,500.

Location: Various locations across the US

Application Deadline: November 1, 2024

Program Dates: 8 weeks during the summer. Dates depend on the lab you choose.

Eligibility

  • High school students who have completed freshman year (meaning no freshman can apply)

  • 16 years old at the beginning of the internship

  • Please check if the labs you’re applying for have specific requirements. 


Administered by the Department of the Navy, the Science and Engineering Apprenticeship Program (SEAP) offers hands-on experience in science and engineering. Participants delve into projects covering cybersecurity, software development, algorithm design, and data analysis, bridging classroom knowledge with practical applications and exposing them to cutting-edge technologies.


Spanning eight weeks during the summer, the program immerses students in a professional research environment. Paired with mentors, participants receive guidance throughout their projects, gaining valuable insights into scientific research and development. SEAP caters to high school students passionate about science, providing a platform to explore applications beyond traditional classroom settings. It's particularly appealing to those considering careers in science and technology, especially within fields linked to national defense.


One other option - Lumiere Research Scholar Program

If you’re interested in pursuing research in computer science or related fields, 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.


Image Source: Meta logo

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