Summer Programs and Internships for High Schoolers

Koai Solano Ortiz
Published on
April 3, 2023

Do you want to do something over the summer that will make you competitive on college applications? As a low-income or financial aid student, are you having a hard time finding pre-college programs, internships, or other great summer opportunities? This compiled list of summer opportunities offers financial aid while some offer full tuition, including no application fees!

The Lumiere Breakthrough Scholar Program helps low-income students with creating 15-page research papers on topics ranging from International Relations to Psychology. Students will conduct independent research with the support of PhD mentors who work with them one-on-one for 12 weeks. There are two upcoming deadlines for the summer session application: April 16, 2023 for Regular Admission 1 and May 14, 2023 for Regular Admission 2. Sessions are also available in the fall and winter.

The Library of Congress provides unpaid summer internships for high school students who want to work with primary sources and create contents for the Library of Congress's participatory learning space, which serves families and children. Applicants must be skillen in research and writing. The session takes place in the Office of the Librarian in Washington, D.C., and is offered in a hybrid format. The program lasts four weeks long (June 26th-July 20th 2023), and participants can earn up to 60 hours of community service for their internship. The deadline for submitting an application is April 28th, 2023 at 11:59 PM EST.

Bossgirls is a free, 5-week in-person summer program for current 9th-12th students who identify as girls or non-binary. The program promotes girls and non-binary students in establishing a community of individuals passionate about business, interacting with entrepreneurs, and getting guidance from expert advisors at Standard Chartered (Bossgirl's sponsor). The program prepares you to execute a business idea and present it to a symposium at the end of the program. The application deadline is on Sunday, April 9, 2023 at 11:59 PM ET.

The Sadie Nash Institute is a 6-week program held from July 5th to August 11th that teaches girls and other gender-expansive high-school students of color leadership skills through workshops, conferences with women leaders, and field trips. To be qualified, applicants must be residents of Newark, New Jersey or New York City. Students may receive up to $360 by the end of the program, depending on their participation. The application deadline is April 17th, but if you apply before April 3rd, you will be given priority.

NYU's Computer Science for Cyber Security Program introduces high school students to cybersecurity and computer science. Students learn how to detect cyber threats, how to code and use them to defend computers from malware, as well as how behavioral science contributes to larger discussions about "phishing" and other attacks. Cryptography and digital forensics are among the topics covered in class (more are listed on the website). The program lasts for 3 weeks, and students must live in New York City. There is no tuition fee, and applications must be submitted by April 14th (final deadline).

Johns Hopkins Engineering Innovation Pre-college Programs caters to high school students who are interested in the field of engineering. The classes available are: Explore Engineering Innovation, Biomedical Engineering Innovation, and Sustainable Energy Engineering. Each course provides three John Hopkins University credits and has small class sizes. There are no scholarships available for residential summer programs, but you may still apply for need-based aid. Financial aid is prioritized for students in Baltimore, students in the U.S., and students with diverse backgrounds.

The University of Rochester offers various pre-college programs through online courses to students aged 13 and up. Among the classes available are: Customizing Care Through Genetics, and Video Game Design Program. Each course has its own trailer on the website that goes into more specifics about the material. There is only a limited financial aid available for this program, and there is also a $60 application fee. The website contains further information about the financial aid package. The deadline differs by course, but some fall between the end of May and the beginning of June. 

Note: If you are admitted to a program but did not receive enough financial aid, consider contacting the university. There is generally an email address given in the application portal for assistance so explain to them your financial situation. They usually offer participants to receive more aid, if needed.

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