As you start thinking about college applications, you might consider doing an internship alongside schoolwork – which highlights not only your commitment to your subject but also how you apply concepts in real-world situations. And if you’re a high school student in Philadelphia eager to gain real-world experience, look no further.
This article presents a list of internships for students in Philadelphia. From research institutions to cultural hubs, these internships cover a range of interests and can provide valuable insight into your chosen field. They can extend beyond mere work experiences and serve as gateways to real-world learning, mentorship, and skill-building.
Note: Please keep in mind the following information is for 2023, though dates tend to be similar from year to year.
Application deadline: Multiple deadlines throughout the year (Fall deadline on August 27, 2023)
Eligibility: All high school students
Program dates: 8-week programs with multiple cohorts throughout the year
Financial assistance: Available
Through this internship, you will be matched with a top start-up and work with them on a real-world project. The field of work could be anything from machine learning, finance, engineering, and health tech to fashion, non-profit, media and journalism. Examples of previous projects include ‘Machine learning model to predict customer churn for an e-commerce website’ and ‘Marketing campaign for series-A backed media company’. Overall, you will spend 10-15 hours per week on this internship and end it with a letter of completion from the company.
In addition to working closely with their manager from the startup, each intern will also work with a Ladder Coach throughout their internship - the Ladder Coach serves as a second mentor and a sounding board, guiding students through the internship and helping them navigate the startup environment. The virtual internship is usually 8 weeks long.
2. Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Internship for Scholars and Emerging Scientists (CHOP-RISES)
Application deadline: There is no information available.
Eligibility: Rising juniors can apply to CHOP-RISES I and rising seniors can apply to CHOP-RISES II.
Program dates: CHOP-RISES I takes place over 6 weeks in the summer, and CHOP-RISES II over 8 weeks in the summer.
Location: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute, Philadelphia
Stipend: A stipend is provided, but information on the exact amount is not available.
CHOP-RISES is a comprehensive medical research internship program designed for students curious about STEM-M (science, technology, engineering, math, and medicine). Both I and II programs allow you to collaborate with renowned researchers and scientists at CHOP, and gain hands-on experience in laboratories dedicated to advancing work in STEM-M fields. This internship program is a chance to explore diverse research areas.
Under the guidance of mentors, you will learn fundamental research techniques, conduct experiments, and analyze data. As a CHOP-RISES II intern, you will have clinical shadowing opportunities and conduct independent research. The program encourages you to build confidence in your knowledge and skill, and guides you towards your future career. At the end of both programs, you will put together a presentation showcasing what you’ve learned over the course of the internship. CHOP-RISES graduates are eligible to apply for summer college internships at CHOP.
Application deadline: Applications typically close by January - February.
Eligibility: Students currently enrolled in high school, from the greater Philadelphia area, including Camden, NJ, may apply.
Program dates: June 20, 2023 - August 11, 2023
Location: Monell Chemical Senses Center, Philadelphia
Stipend: Students will be paid for full-time work during the course of the internship. Information on the exact pay figure is not available.
This apprenticeship program is for students passionate about scientific research in the fields of biomedicine and medicine. As an apprentice, you will collaborate with some of the leading researchers in their respective fields in a multidisciplinary environment. During the program, you will gain hands-on experience by working on research projects and learn various laboratory techniques.
You will also participate in activities that include lectures on scientific topics; public speaking and written communication; and ethical principles guiding human and animal research. At the end of the program, there will be a public conference where you can present your research to scientific staff, family members, and friends.
Application deadline: Applications open in October and typically close in January.
Eligibility: Current high school juniors and seniors are eligible to apply. See all eligibility criteria here.
Program dates: 8-week summer internship, including an all-expenses-covered week-long Student Leadership Summit in Washington, DC. Dates vary by location, but the internship usually begins shortly after the school year ends.
Location: A local non-profit organization in Philadelphia that the Bank of America has partnered with for the internship program.
Stipend: It is a paid internship, but no information is available on the exact amount.
With this program, the bank aims to foster community-mindedness, encouraging and training students who are passionate about improving their community. The program offers an opportunity for you to work at a local non-profit organization, as you develop your leadership and community skills. While you learn about the various aspects of running such an organization, engage in community service projects, and develop a deeper understanding of social issues, you will simultaneously work on skills that will aid in your future academics and career. This 8-week paid internship includes a week-long Student Leadership Summit held in Washington, DC. The travel, food and stay for the same will be covered by the bank. This entire experience will equip young leaders like you with the knowledge and tools to drive positive change in your community.
We have covered this opportunity in depth here!
There are two options under this internship – the Bloomberg Arts Internship - Summer program (BAI) and the Bloomberg Arts Internship - School Year program (BAISY).
Application deadline: Applications for both the summer option and school year option typically close by March.
Eligibility: Rising seniors may apply.
Program dates: Summer option (June 26, 2023 - August 11, 2023) | School Year option (October - May, 8 hours a week)
Location: Various worksites, in connection with arts and culture organizations, across the Greater Philadelphia region.
Stipend: It is a paid opportunity, but the exact stipend amount is not available.
These arts internships, hosted by the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance and sponsored by Bloomberg Philanthropies, can be a platform to explore your creativity while you immerse yourself in the world of art and culture. The program aims to connect you to various arts and culture organizations across the Greater Philadelphia area and teach you skills that will prepare you for your future academics and career. It also encourages you to speak confidently and professionally regarding what you need in order to be successful and to recognize how your work will help you reach your full potential. Through hands-on projects and mentorship, you will get insight into various aspects of arts administration, exhibition planning, marketing, and event coordination. The program fosters a deeper understanding of the cultural landscape and equips you with practical skills that extend beyond the classroom.
Application deadline: March 31, 2023
Eligibility: Students who are at least 16 years old and have completed at least one high school science course may apply.
Program dates: July 10, 2023 - August 3, 2023
Location: The Wistar Institute, Philadelphia
A fairly competitive program that only accepts 12 students a year, this program at the Wistar Institute has been running for over 20 years. It offers you the opportunity to take part in hands-on research projects in cancer biology, vaccine development, and infectious diseases. Over three weeks in the summer, you will spend time training in cutting-edge biomedical laboratory techniques and contributing to real projects at the institute in their state-of-the-art facilities. During the program, you will be taught to read scientific literature and encouraged to explore multiple careers in biomedical research. At the end of the course, you will present your work to your peers and mentors.
Application deadline: June 2, 2023
Eligibility: Rising juniors and seniors currently enrolled in a Philadelphia high school may apply.
Program dates: July 10-21, 2023, and a weekly after-school program held throughout the 2023-24 school year.
Location: The College of Physicians of Philadelphia
This internship focuses on the fields of STEM and social justice. During the course of this program, you will explore the impact of violence upon yourself, your peers, and your communities while improving your understanding of science, technology, and medicine. As an intern, you will work closely with the staff at the college, and with experts from a variety of fields related to forensic science, healthcare, and community action. You will receive training to use the same tools and methods that these professionals use in their fields. The program focuses on the physiological, psychological, and community impact of violence while providing hands-on experiences to foster a deeper understanding of STEM careers, medical practices, and healthcare innovations. Going beyond traditional classroom learning, this internship lays a strong foundation for your future.
The College of Physicians of Philadelphia also runs an after-school internship, Out4STEM, that aims to provide Philadelphia’s LGBTQIA youth with healthcare and STEM-oriented instruction, mentorship, academic support, and college/career preparation in an inclusive, safe space.
Application deadline: Open call for applications. Students generally apply in October for the spring option, and in March for the summer option.
Eligibility: All high school students from Philadelphia and the surrounding communities may apply.
Program dates: Two options: Consecutive Saturdays from late January to early May. | Tuesdays and Thursdays from July to August
Location: William Tennent High School, Warminster (January - May) | Temple University, Philadelphia (July - August)
This rigorous lab-based internship program encourages students to pursue their interest in science and medicine by offering a chance to do hypothesis-driven research and learn hands-on in a laboratory. The program is conducted in three phases. In the first phase, you will develop potential research questions surrounding the impact of diet, environmental stress, and genetics on organismal development and behavior, while also learning basic lab and problem-solving skills. In the second phase, you will learn how to use common laboratory equipment, design and perform experiments, learn about data collection and analysis, and, most importantly, learn how to think through and overcome failure. In the last phase, practice explaining their experimental design, data, conclusions, and future directions throughout the program. At the end of the program, students present their findings to the scientific community, their peers, and their family in a scientific symposium where they gain insight into the real world and big-picture applications of their work.
This program is offered by the Fox Chase Cancer Center.
Application deadline: March 15
Eligibility: High school seniors may apply.
Program dates: 8-10 weeks in the summer (Monday-Friday) after graduation. The exact dates of the internship depend on the intern’s school schedule.
Location: Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton University, Princeton, PA (about 40 minutes from Philadelphia)
These summer internships are for seniors – the summer after you graduate and before college begins. It is a chance to work on a project with a member of the laboratory’s research or engineering staff, at one of the most prestigious and renowned institutions in the country. You will engage in a range of activities, from experimental work to computational simulations, gaining practical skills and insights into scientific research. Through this program, you will have the chance to delve into various aspects of plasma physics, fusion energy, and related fields, broadening your understanding of these complex subjects. The program encourages the scientist in you to ask questions and do the work to find your answers, preparing you for your future pursuits.
While the last two below are listed as programs by their hosts, their structures and designs are similar to those of internships. We also believe they would aid in your academic journey, and are worth considering.
Application deadline: April 14, 2023
Eligibility: Rising 10th and 11th-grade students, with a minimum GPA of 2.85, may apply.
Program dates: July 10, 2023 - August 4, 2023
Location: Various departments at the University of Pennsylvania
This intensive four-week college preparatory summer program is curated by faculty and staff at the university’s Perelman School of Medicine, Nursing School, School of Engineering and Applied Sciences/IT, the Penn Carey School of Law, and the School of Dental Medicine. During the program, you will engage in hands-on, experiential learning-based programming through curricula developed to highlight, and offer exploration into various career opportunities. You will get a chance to interact with the professionals from the university’s graduate and professional school partners. The program fosters knowledge-building and understanding of subjects that include digital literacy, wellness, personal growth, professional development, SAT test preparation, financial literacy, life skills, and post-secondary educational access. This experience can not only prepare you for your future academic pursuits but also encourages a sense of intellectual curiosity and self-discovery.
11. Penn Summer Science Initiative (PSSI) at the Laboratory for Research on the Structure of Matter (LRSM), University of Pennsylvania
Application deadline: March 1, 2023
Eligibility: High school juniors may apply. On occasion, well-qualified sophomores are accepted. Those applying must have taken chemistry and/or physics courses.
Program dates: July 10, 2023 - August 3, 2023 (Monday to Thursday)
Location: Laboratory for Research on the Structure of Matter, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
This four-week intensive materials science course is designed as a blend of formal lectures from university faculty and affiliated researchers, materials science workshops, lab report writing seminars, projects, hands-on activities, and field trips. You will be exposed to a variety of materials characterization techniques, such as scanning electron and optical microscopies, thermal analysis techniques, mechanical testing, and x-ray diffraction. During the program, you will work on reports, projects, and other assignments. Through collaborative projects and mentorship from faculty, you gain a deeper understanding of scientific methodologies and practices. This immersive learning environment allows you to explore various research topics and fosters critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
One other option – Lumiere Research Scholar Program
If you are passionate about research, you could also consider applying to the Lumiere Research Scholar Program, a selective online high school program for students I 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.
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: Ladder Internships