14 Computer Science Internships for High School Students

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Are you a programming whiz? Do you hope to pursue a career in computer science — software development, cybersecurity, or another niche? Then you’re in luck. We’ve rounded up some of the best computer science internships and programs for high school students, because it’s never too early to get a head start on a successful future.

 

14 Computer Science Internships for High School Students

 

1. Anson L. Clark Scholars Program

 

Through this seven-week, intensive research program, 12 juniors and seniors will have the opportunity to participate in hands-on research in a variety of areas, including computer science, at Texas Tech University with faculty. Scholars receive room and board, and at the successful completion of a project report, they will earn a $750 stipend. In addition to research, scholars will participate in activities, seminars, and field trips.

 

2. Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP) High School Apprenticeship

 

The AEOP High School Apprenticeship allows students to spend their summer taking part in innovative research at a university research lab or one of the U.S. Army Research Laboratories and Centers. Along with learning how to use high-tech equipment and cutting-edge techniques, students will receive mentorship from practitioners while connecting with a community of like-minded peers and near-peer mentors.

 

Students will also have access to AEOP’s webinar series on STEM careers, research areas, and more, as well as workshops on college-readiness and professional skills. Apprentices receive a stipend for their work.

 

3. Computer Science for Cyber Security (CS4CS)

 

CS4CS is a “barrier-breaking” introduction to computer science and cybersecurity for high schoolers. Running remotely this summer, the free, three-week opportunity is held through NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering. The mission is to empower women and minorities, typically underrepresented in STEM, to become leaders in the field.

 

From white-hate hacking to digital forensics, the program covers broad and niche topics. To be considered, you must be entering 9th-12th grade in September 2021 and live in one of New York City’s five boroughs or a neighboring city (e.g. Jersey City, Newark, or Hempstead). Apply by April 12, 2021.

 

4. Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program

 

A free, two-week program for rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors, SIP gives future STEM professionals exposure to the field of computer science. Through the program, students (girls and non-binary individuals) around the world will learn about tech jobs and meet like-minded peers.

 

Along with participating in engaging projects virtually, students will learn critical computer science concepts and practice in smaller breakout groups.

 

5. Google Computer Science Summer Institute (CSSI)

 

CSSI is a four-week introduction to computer science for rising college freshmen, particularly those who have been marginalized in the field. The program is intended to provide an intensive, interactive experience in computer science and inspire them to earn a degree in tech, as well as help them build their technical skills and confidence. Participants will also get an inside look at Google’s environment and culture. 

 

NB: Due to the pandemic, CSSI is online in 2021.

 

6. Institute for Advanced Learning and Research (IALR) Summer Internship Program

 

If you’re graduating this year and plan to attend college in fall 2021, you’ll have the opportunity to participate in IALR’s Summer Internship Program. 

 

This program aims to provide real training and leadership experiences in STEM fields, with eight potential projects, including computer science-related topics such as SMART Table 2.0 Controller Development and Information Technology. For your work, you’ll receive a $2,925 stipend.

 

NB: Internships may be modified due to the pandemic.

 

7. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Summer High School Intern Program Research

 

Divided into six NIST laboratories, NIST performs research in a variety of engineering and physical sciences topics. Through this program, students may work in any of these laboratories:

 

  • Communications Technology Laboratory (CTL)
  • Engineering Laboratory (EL)
  • Information Technology Laboratory (ITL)
  • Material Measurement Laboratory (MML)
  • NIST Center for Neutron Research (NCNR)
  • Physical Measurement Laboratory (PML)

 

Students apply to the specific lab that interests them. Learn more about the specific responsibilities and skills that will make you excel as an intern via the link above.

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8. National Security Agency Student Programs

 

The NSA provides a number of opportunities for students, including internships and scholarships. (Bear in mind that the Agency selects candidates to its programs up to a year in advance, so students should apply early for a better chance at acceptance.)

 

One notable opportunity is the Stokes Program, open to high school seniors, especially minority students, who intend to major in computer science or computer/electrical engineering. Your college costs will be fully compensated up to $30k per year and you’ll earn a year-round salary. In return, you must work at the NSA for at least 1.5 times the length of study upon graduation. Participants are also required to work at the NSA during their summer breaks. To participate, students must have certain minimum GPAs and test scores.

 

9. Research in Science & Engineering (RISE) Internship

 

A six-week program for academically-motivated rising seniors, RISE gives students the opportunity to conduct real research under the guidance of Boston University faculty, postdoctoral fellow, or graduate student mentor. There are a number of STEM tracks available, including computer science. 

 

In addition to partaking in a research project, you’ll present your work at a Poster Symposium (remote in 2021) and may even be able to submit it to national contests. You’ll also participate in weekly workshops that will help you gain insight and skills necessary for being a valuable contributor to the STEM community.

 

10. Sandia Internships

 

Sandia encourages students from high school to the PhD level to tackle real-world, challenging projects that impact the nation and globe. Interns partake in projects, often at technical institutes, in disciplines like cybersecurity, software development, and more. In their roles, students will receive mentorship and have the opportunities to engage in social activities. 

 

Students will be paid for their work and potentially receive academic credit, along with training and practical work experience.

 

11. Simons Summer Research Program

 

Participate in hands-on research under the guidance of faculty mentors. In this program, you’ll learn laboratory techniques and tools, be a part of an active research team, and get a taste of college life. Along with their work, apprentices attend weekly faculty talks and participate in events. At the culmination of the program, apprentices produce a written abstract and research poster.

 

The apprenticeship is open to rising seniors and takes place June 18–August 9, 2021 in a remote format in 2021.

 

12. Spark Summer Internship Program

 

Through Spark SIP, high school students will be able to connect with industry experts, educators, and mentors in disciplines like computer science. While participating in research in real-world settings, students receive mentorship from these industry leaders. 

 

Interns must be able to commit to working 30-40 hours per week for 8-12 weeks over the summer.

 

13. Syracuse University (SU) Engineering and Computer Science (ECS) Research Internship

 

Rising 12th-grade students in the greater Syracuse area may apply for this 6-week internship program, in which you’ll participate in a university-level research project, working in a state-of-the-art research facility and receiving mentorship from SU research faculty and graduate and undergraduate students.

 

Part of the College of Engineering and Computer Science, the program exposes students to STEM careers. They will also have the chance to take part in activities and informational lunches intended to ease the transition from high school to college, as well as present their work at a poster symposium. Successful interns will also receive a stipend.

 

NB: This program will not run in 2021 due to the pandemic. 

 

14. Tech360

 

This free, 10-week program is open to 10th- and 11th-grade students enrolled in New York City high schools. Focusing on web development, students take courses taught by technology professionals at companies across the city. Participants will develop a portfolio of projects and participate in professional opportunities at local companies.

 

NB: The program will take place virtually in 2021 due to the pandemic.

 

See our list of STEM internships for more opportunities.

 

How Much Do Internships Impact Your College Chances?

 

Extracurricular activities are divided into four tiers, with tier 1 representing the most exceptional and rare extracurriculars and tier 4 representing the most common activities admissions committees see.

 

If you’re applying to highly-selective schools, we recommend having at least a few tier 1 and 2 activities to set yourself apart from other applicants. Internships vary in terms of rigor and selectivity, but prestigious, national programs in particular can certainly fall into tiers 1 or 2. 

 

If you’re curious about how your computer science or other internship stacks up, use CollegeVine’s free chancing engine. This tool will give you a more granular view of how your activities impact your chances of admission at hundreds of schools across the U.S. Plus, you’ll receive tips for improving your profile.

 

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Short Bio
Laura Berlinsky-Schine is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University, where she majored in Creative Writing and minored in History. She lives in Brooklyn, New York and works as a freelance writer specializing in education. She dreams of having a dog.

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