13 Best Engineering Internships For High School Students In 2023


Engineering internships for high school students are a practical way for high school students to get a feel of life as an engineer. While many students seek internship vacancies to acquire some skills in their field of study, they usually may not know where to find one.

They are many reasons why we start internships in high school that give us a competitive edge both in college and in future careers. These internships will help you will acquire more skills and know more about engineering because you deserve the best.

At the end of this article, you should be able to get started, not only to help you identify or pick out the right/best type of engineering internship for your interest but also to learn what to expect from an engineering internship in general.

Quickly scroll down the table of content to get an overview of what the post entails.

Who Is An Engineer?

An engineer uses science, technology, and math to solve problems. We can see engineering everywhere around us, improving how we work, travel, communicate, stay healthy, and entertain ourselves.

Today, the field of engineering offers more career choices than any other discipline. In the past, there were four major engineering branches: mechanical, chemical, civil, and electrical. Today, the number of available engineering degrees has greatly increased. There are now six major branches of engineering: mechanical, chemical, civil, electrical, management, and geotechnical, and under each branch, there are hundreds of different subcategories.

Engineers design machinery, build skyscrapers, and oversee public works, but they also address society’s needs and problems on so many other levels as well. At a molecular level, they work on drug delivery systems inside cells.

At a macro level, they quantify the particle flow of pollutants through the soil to clean up oil spills, abandoned industrial sites, and other biohazards. Now, at a galactic level, they are designing spacecraft for other-planet exploration.

But, at an atomic level, they are developing data storage focusing on the spin of electrons in atoms. Clean drinking water, safe food storage, and protecting our environment are also under the engineer’s domain.

Who is Qualified for the Engineering Internship?

An engineering internship is a friendly program that helps high school and college students learn more about engineering. For high school students, it gives them the best view of what they will do in college. Engineering interns are open to 10th–12th graders, and students interested in applying must have a 3.0 GPA.

What Are The Benefits of an Engineering Internship?

Well, other experiences, such as volunteering and normal part-time jobs, develop relevant soft skills in you that can help you create a better resume and work ethic in the future. Internships make you see what it takes for you to succeed in the industry you’re interested in.

Engineering internships, in particular, will allow you to concentrate on developing your logical and analytical thinking skills, solve problems, and also acquire skills such as research or data analysis.

Many of the internships pair you with a mentor. An engineering expert who guides you through some of the tasks you are unfamiliar with. He may also share his/her educational and professional experiences with you.

Basically, you can ask them questions bordering on the engineering career path, like what courses to offer in high school; how to prepare for success in college and in your career.

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Internships count as a form of work experience, and they might attract the attention of future employers or college admissions counselors. In addition, your life experiences during an internship could provide you with rich material for an engaging admissions essay.

As you can see, there are lots of reasons to get an internship, and the best is that you can earn money while you pursue your passion, because many of the internships below are paid opportunities.

When Should You Do An Engineering Internship?

Students can do an internship before high school or after college. Companies usually come to the college for placements after the 6th, 7th, or 8th semesters. So, you can apply for the internship opportunities once companies visit your campus.

How Long Is An Engineering Internship?

Summer interns are about 10 to 12 weeks long (3 months) or one semester or quarter duration. However, internship duration can also be influenced by the length of a school break. For instance, winter internships typically take place throughout a winter vacation.

Also, some internship takes an entire year or two semesters depending on your decision or your school.

Type Of Internship Seasons

  • Fall internship dates typically start in September.
  • Winter internship dates typically start in November or December.
  • Spring internship dates typically start in January or February.
  • Summer internship dates typically start in June.

How much does an engineering internship pay?

The average pay for an engineering intern is $43,212 annually in the United States. Salary estimates are based on 707 salaries submitted anonymously to Indeed by Engineering Intern employees and users, and collected from past and present job advertisements on Indeed in the past 36 months.

Engineering Internships for High School Students

#1. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Becoming a NASA intern is a highly competitive process, where you’ll have the chance to work on cutting-edge research and receive mentorship from current NASA employees. Internships can be completed during the fall, spring, or summer, and spaces for high school students are limited to select centers.

To qualify, you need to be at least 16 years old and have a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale (or an unweighted 3.0 GPA). You’ll need to make sure you have a strong letter of recommendation.

#2. National Institute of Health

This internship will allow you to work with NIH biomedical researchers for eight weeks over the summer. You can also choose to complete one of their subprograms: the first is called HiSTEP, and it’s geared towards economically disadvantaged students in Virginia, Maryland, and D.C. to provide an introduction to STEM and leadership development. HiSTEP 2.0 is an option for HiSTEP graduates and general high school students in the Bethesda area.

For the general NIH internship, you’ll need to be at least 17 years old by June 15 of the year of your internship, and you’ll need to live close to one of the NIH campuses:

  • Bethesda, MD
  • Baltimore, MD
  • Frederick, MD
  • Research Triangle Park, NC
  • Hamilton, MT
  • Framingham, MA
  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Detroit, MI

#3. NSA High School Work-Study

This program allows high school students to earn a salary over the summer and into the school year by fulfilling office roles at the National Security Agency.

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If you have experience in computer programming, you may be assigned the role of a Computer Aide, where you’ll have the chance to learn how to work with the NSA’s state-of-the-art data processing equipment

To be eligible, you’ll need to be a junior in high school, have an unweighted GPA of 2.5 or higher, and have a background or interest in business, engineering, or computer science. You also need to live near one of the following sites:

  • Ft. Meade, MD (Headquarters)
  • Aurora, CO
  • Augusta, GA
  • San Antonio, TX
  • Oahu, HI

Applications are open from September 1 through October 31 and can be found here (when applications are available). Students will need to apply online and submit their supplementary materials by mail.

#4. Science and Engineering Apprenticeship Program (SEAP)

This paid engineering internship targets high school students interested in conducting research over the summer. You’ll work for eight weeks at a participating Department of Navy laboratory. There are opportunities available in the following states:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Indiana
  • Maryland
  • Mississippi
  • New Jersey
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • Washington, D.C.

To be eligible, you need to be at least a sophomore and 16 years old at the time of application.

#5. Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

For high school seniors living in the Princeton area, you may be able to participate in a project-based internship at the Plasma Physics Laboratory! This internship requires you to collaborate with your high school to create a schedule that allows the internship to count for credit and accommodates your internship project needs.

This is a semester-long internship. You’ll need to be at least 16 years old and be a senior during the semester you’re applying for. The deadline for fall internships is April 30 and the deadline for spring internships is November 30.

#6. Idaho National Laboratory

Go Get paid to work directly with a mentor at the Idaho National Laboratory! This laboratory is the Department of Energy’s national leader in nuclear energy, although they also contribute to other research areas such as national security and environmental science.

You’ll need to be at least 16 years old to apply and be prepared to commit to a full-time schedule over eight weeks in the summer.

#7. Spark Summer Internship Program

Spark is an organization that provides STEM enrichment opportunities to students in Seattle, Washington, and among those programs are internships with several partner companies. Their partner companies focus on computer science, with options to work on software, mobile app development, and web programming.

The exact requirements vary depending on the partner organization, but one common application exists.

The application deadline is April 14, and you can apply online for up to three organizations.

#8. Hutton Junior Fisheries Biology Program

If you’re more about science than engineering, then this paid internship and mentoring experience are perfect for you. This program is available anywhere the American Fisheries Society has active members who can serve as mentors. You’ll work side-by-side with professionals to see firsthand what science is like in the field.

To be eligible to apply, you must be a junior or senior in high school and complete the application during the open period. The application opens on December 17 and closes on February 15. Internships take place over the summer, and you are generally placed at a site within commuting distance.

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#9. National Cancer Institute

Get an inside look at healthcare research with an internship at the National Cancer Institute. As a scientific intern, you’ll develop the foundational skills needed to complete biomedical research and have a designated mentor who can share their educational and professional experiences.

To be eligible, you need to be a junior in high school at the time of application and be at least 17 years old by the start of the program in June. You also need to have an unweighted GPA of 3.0 and the Hepatitis B vaccine.

Start your application by creating an NCI account and filling out the internship application when it becomes available in October.

#10. Introductory College Level Experience in Microbiology (iCLEM)

While not as traditional of an internship, this is an 8-week paid summer intensive that is designed for economically disadvantaged high school juniors and seniors. It is held at the Joint BioEnergy Institute. In it, students will gain skills in advanced scientific topics like microbiology, biochemistry, and biofuels as they work on a research project alongside JBEI researchers and undergrads.

This opportunity is open to sophomores and juniors living in Alameda, Contra Costa, or San Francisco counties in California who have a 2.5 GPA or higher and passed Algebra 1 and Biology.

The application will be open starting January 24 and is due by March 21.


What is an internship?

An internship is a temporary work placement, where students acquire knowledge or gain experience before or during college. Sometimes it can be a few months over a summer break, sometimes part-time work throughout your degree. It might be paid, usually at an hourly rate, or unpaid, in which you should at least expect some expenses (such as food and travel to work) to be covered.

How do I get an internship?

Below are six(6) ways to get an internship;
– Narrow your search. Try to work out what kind of engineering job you’d like.
– Workout what employers want. Find out what experience you need to get your ideal job.
– Don’t wait for companies to advertise.
– Research, research, research.
– Stay in touch with your uni.
– Widen your horizons.

What do engineering interns do?

Engineering interns do many things during their internship, depending on the kind of engineering course they want to do, or you are doing. Some things most interns do is design apart, mechanisms, or processes using modeling software, electrical connection, etc.

Do I have to do an engineering internship?

Yes, it is important; doing an internship or course in engineering is mandatory for engineering students before completing their bachelor’s degree. It also helps you build a strong CV or resume.

Can a first or second-year engineering student get an internship?

For those in the first or second year of a four-year degree, it isn’t easy to get an internship. The good news is that engineering spans several different sectors with almost every primary graduate recruiter interested in hiring those with an engineering background.


You should be able to pick out the correct type of internship for your interest and what to expect from engineering(STEM) internships.


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