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15 High School Internships in Phoenix in 2023

What’s Covered:


Completing an internship has all kinds of benefits, from getting experience in a field you’re interested in to building relationships with people who can act as mentors down the line. And, in addition to giving you an opportunity to spend some time exploring one of your passions, internships can help your college application stand out, especially at the most selective schools. Finding internship opportunities available to high school students can be challenging, so we’ve compiled a list of 15 programs in the Phoenix area.


15 High School Internships in Phoenix


1. Sam’s Club Member Specialist – High School Intern


Application deadline: N/A

Duration: N/A


Member Specialist interns at Sam’s Club have a wide range of responsibilities related to customer service, including handling purchases and returns, organizing merchandise, and maintaining proper documentation. Interns will be paid, and will report to a manager, who will provide feedback. Interns also have the opportunity to recommend improvements to the store’s functioning, based on their daily experience.


If you see yourself potentially being interested in customer-facing work in the future—for example, through a position in a marketing department—this internship is a great way for you to start familiarizing yourself with that world.


2. NIH High School Summer Internship Program


Application deadline: TBA

Duration: Minimum of 8 weeks


If you’re interested in medicine—or biomedical research more broadly—this program is an ideal jumping-off point, as you’ll have the opportunity to work alongside some of the world’s most influential scientists. Interns will be on a team with college graduates, graduate students, and postdocs, and will be just as involved in the project as those older, more experienced researchers.


Interns will also have the chance to complete their own independent research project, and will receive a stipend for their work. Note that applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents, a junior or senior at the time of application, and 17 years old by the time the program begins in June.


3. Summer Institute on Medical Ignorance at the University of Arizona


Application deadline: TBA

Duration: 6 weeks


This paid research fellowship focuses on students from disadvantaged backgrounds, and was designed to supplement and enhance the education that students interested in health receive in the classroom. Participants will become familiar with both basic and clinical science, as well as broad research skills, and will have the opportunity to meet and work with visiting scientists and physicians.


This program is perfect for students who are thinking of studying pre-med in college, as many participants say that it inspired their interest in medicine. Some have even returned to the program as medical students!


4. The Governor’s Youth Commission


Application deadline: TBA

Duration: The academic year (September through June)


The Governor’s Youth Commission is a body made up of high school students—who must be at least sophomores—that aims to address the biggest issues facing young people in Arizona. Commissioners will be divided into five workgroups, which focus on distracted driving, domestic violence, education, mental health, and substance abuse, respectively.


The makeup of the commission reflects Arizona’s demographic and geographic diversity, so this program provides the opportunity to not only improve your community, but also to get to know your fellow Arizonans who may come from different backgrounds.


5. Barrow Neurological Institute Summer High School Internship Program


Application deadline: TBA

Duration: 1 month


Program participants will develop a range of skills, from an enhanced understanding of basic neurological principles to communication in a scientific context. Applicants are able to choose a particular lab at the Institute that interests them, such as the Ivy Brain Tumor Center or the Thurston Innovation Center, which studies neurosurgery devices and spine biometrics.


If you prefer, you can also apply for a research support role in marketing, neuroscience publications, or at the Barrow Neurological Foundation. If you are over the age of 16 and interested in neuroscience, medicine, or some combination of the two, this program will give you the chance to start crystallizing your interests before ever setting foot on a college campus!


6. High School Cybersecurity Research Internship at Arizona State University’s Center for Cybersecurity and Trusted Foundations


Application deadline: TBA

Duration: 8 weeks


Interns will have the opportunity to complete their own research project, while being guided by PhD students at ASU’s Laboratory of Security Engineering for Future Computing, as well as a team made up of leading cybersecurity faculty. The whole lab will meet once a week to share progress, and one-on-one mentoring is also available as needed.


While previous experience coding and an interest in cybersecurity will help your application, this program also places a high value on students who are ready to learn and willing to struggle as they learn the fundamentals of research. Interns who complete the program will receive an $1,800 stipend, which will be prorated if you leave the program early.


7. KEYS Research Internship at the University of Arizona


Application deadline: TBA

Duration: 7 weeks during the summer


This program begins with a weeklong crash course in the basics of scientific research, followed by six weeks of research under the guidance of a University of Arizona faculty member. It concludes with a professional presentation at the Research Showcase. Your research project will be related to interdisciplinary biosciences, biomedicine, or data science.


You don’t need to have taken any particular STEM classes or have any previous research experience to take part in the program. To participate, you must be at least 16, have U.S. citizenship or legal residency, and have at least one year of Arizona residency.


8. Helios Scholars at TGen


Application deadline: TBA

Duration: 8 weeks during the summer


Unfortunately, this program is only available to graduating seniors. However, if that’s you, and you’re looking for something to fill your last summer before college, this program will give you the opportunity to work with a TGen scientist to explore some area of translational bioscience, from laboratory research to statistics.


In addition to completing a research project, Helios Scholars will also attend educational seminars, learn about career options in bioscience, develop their scientific writing skills, and attend a formal research symposium at the end of the program, where they will present their results and reflect on their accomplishments. Note that in order to be eligible, you must be a full-time university student in the fall after you complete the program, and must have the legal right to work in the U.S.


9. AZYouthforce Internships


Application deadline: Varies

Duration: Varies, from 8 to 18 weeks


If you know you’d like a paid summer internship, but aren’t sure exactly what area you want to intern in, this is a great opportunity for you to check out. AZYouthforce works to pair teens with an employer, which could be anything from the Footprint Center to Google. For the duration of your internship, you will also have a mentor who will put you in a position to succeed by teaching you about the workplace.


Although this program is a subset of Boys & Girls Club of the Valley, you don’t need to be a member to apply! You do need to be between 16 and 19 years old and currently enrolled in school. Before starting your internship, you will also need to complete 30 hours of essential skills training, which will be administered by AZYouthforce Academy.


10. Phoenix Youth Reach and Invest in Summer Employment (R.I.S.E.) Program


Application deadline: N/A

Duration: June through July


Through ARIZONA @ WORK, a statewide workforce development network, the city of Phoenix works to help young people (who are at least 16) find summer jobs. This paid program will give you valuable experience in a business setting, which could be a governmental agency, library, non-profit, or something else!


Participants must reside in Phoenix and have the legal right to work in the U.S.


11. SCience and ENgineering Experience (SCENE) at Arizona State University


Application deadline: July 31, 2023

Duration: 7 months (September through April)


During SCENE, you will spearhead your own research project, which you will carry out under the supervision of a mentor from ASU. Your project can be in a variety of STEM fields, including medicine, physics, and sustainable engineering. The program culminates in a presentation to the SCENE group and participation in the Arizona Science and Engineering Fair.


Participants have the option to continue working with their mentor after the conclusion of the program. Note that you must be at least a rising sophomore to apply.


12. Casa Grande Summer Internship


Application deadline: TBA

Duration: 6 weeks


If you’re interested in a career in government or you’re passionate about community service in general, this program will give you a sneak peek into what your future job might look like. And you’ll even make some money while you’re at it.


In your application, you can select a City Department to work with—these include Public Works, Community Services, Planning & Development, the Attorney’s Office, the Public Information Office, the Fire Department, or the City Manager’s Office. While there is no official age requirement for the program, note that some of the departments do have age restrictions, such as the Attorney’s Office, where you must be 18 to apply.


13. Sharlot Hall Museum High School Internship


Application deadline: N/A

Duration: N/A


If you think you might want to work in a museum one day, pursue an art-related career more generally, or would simply like to know more about your state’s history, this internship could be a great match for you.


In addition to learning the ins and outs of museum work, you will also have the opportunity to complete projects related to your academic interests. So, if you have ever thought about doing humanities research in college, this program could be a great first step towards reaching that goal!


14. Mayo Clinic Career Advancement, Research, and Education Summer Program (CARES)


Application deadline: TBA

Duration: 4 weeks during the summer


Designed for high school students interested in medicine, CARES will familiarize you with the range of career options in healthcare, and will give you firsthand experience in hospitals to show you what your work might one day look like. Additionally, during the academic year following the program, you will be matched with a healthcare professional who will act as your mentor to help guide you towards your goals.


This program is open to students in their freshman, sophomore, or junior year, and students from disadvantaged backgrounds are especially encouraged to apply. Participants will receive a stipend for their work upon completion of the program.


15. AZ Cyber Initiative Internship Program


Application deadline: N/A

Duration: N/A


The AZ Cyber Initiative offers Cyber Bootcamps, which are designed to introduce high schoolers to the world of cybersecurity. Upon completion of one of these weeklong bootcamps, you will be eligible to complete a paid internship in cybersecurity with a local business.


Unfortunately, you must complete the bootcamp to participate in the internship program, regardless of whether or not you already have experience in cybersecurity. On the bright side, high schoolers of any age can complete the bootcamp. This includes freshmen, who are often excluded from many internship opportunities!


How Do Internships Impact Your College Chances?


At the most selective colleges, once your grades and test scores clear the initial academic threshold, your extracurriculars will become extremely important. These schools receive more academically qualified applicants than they can accept, so they turn to your activities and essays to see how well you would fit into their particular campus community.


There are four tiers of extracurricular activities that colleges think about when reviewing applicants’ activities. Selective, competitive, and prestigious activities are often found in the top tiers, Tier 1 and Tier 2.


Tier 1 includes things such as being a highly recruited basketball player or an award-winning national science fair competitor. Tier 2 is similar, but is usually reserved for activities that are more common than those in Tier 1. Tiers 3 and 4 are reserved for more common extracurricular achievements, such as holding school leadership positions or being a member of a debate team. An internship will likely be between Tier 1 and Tier 3, mainly depending on the organization hosting it and how selective it is.


If you want to know what your chances of acceptance are at your dream school, check out our free chancing engine, which will factor in everything from your grades to your course rigor to your activities. The engine will also tell you how to improve your profile, which just might include completing an internship!

Short Bio
Adrian is a current senior at Dartmouth College, originally from Seattle, WA. At Dartmouth, she studies philosophy and neuroscience, and has been involved with research in the philosophy department, sexual assault prevention on campus, and mentorship programs for first year students. She spent her junior fall studying abroad at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.