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Internships.com Answers: How old do I have to be to get an internship?

March 15, 2011

800px Senate Pages snowball fight Internships.com Answers: How old do I have to be to get an internship?

The Senate Page Program is one of several government internships available to high school students. And apparently they used to have snowball fights.

It looks like we’ve got a lot of ambitious teens out there, judging by the number of high school students who have been asking whether Internships.com can help them find an internship. And the answer is yes — although not all of your dream internships will be willing to take someone so young.

We know that teens can and do take on internships. There’s proof on this blog, where we’ve recently featured a 16-year-old fashion design intern and a high schooler interning for KCOH radio in Houston. So here are some pointers for finding work experience before you’ve hit college.

  1. Avoid listings that specify “for college credit.” This should be a no-brainer, but for-credit internships are almost never flexible. Most internships that require college credit to be received do so because they’re unpaid, and would otherwise be in violation of labor laws.
  2. Consider government internships. Various federal bureaus and agencies seem to run internship programs that are open to younger applicants, like the CIA’s Undergraduate Scholarship Program and the Congressional Page Program. These programs typically choose interns well in advance, though, so they may not help this summer.
  3. Search for internship programs, rather than individual internships. Try including the word “program” in your searches. Established, structured and long-standing internship programs may be more comfortable with accepting younger applicants than employers who have never hired an intern before and aren’t sure what to expect. In addition to the government’s internship programs, some well-known employers like the Smithsonian Museum and Microsoft offer internships for high school students. The Rochester Institute of Technology has also compiled a running list of internship programs for high schoolers interested in the biological sciences and medical fields.
  4. Think local. If you want to learn more about broadcasting, try dropping by your local public access channel or news radio station. Even if they don’t have formal internships, they may be able to use the help of someone who’s passionate about their medium and willing to put in hours after school. If you’re a tech whiz, hit the message boards and see if there are any startups in your area that need help. If you write, check the local newsstand publications and get in touch with an editor. When you look independently, always remember to ask “Who could really use my help?” just as much as “Where would I love to work?”

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Ann March 16, 2011 at 10:10 am

Hey Everyone! Discovery Internships, formerly Career Explorations, is dedicated to helping students stand out and take control of their futures. Our customized internship programs provide life changing experiences for high school students at a pivotal time in their life. Whether you are a high school student looking to gain clarity on college choices or fields of potential study or just looking for a meaningful summer in one of the greatest cities in the world!
If your interested in business, fashion, finance, healthcare, journalism, law, media, not-for-profit, photography, real estate, veterinary medicine or just about any other field, a professional internship can help you make more informed decisions about your future and stand out from the crowd!

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Anthony Rodriguez July 3, 2011 at 4:23 pm

Hello my name is Anthony. Im 16 years old. I want to do an internship in sports broadcasting. After high school i want to get credits for my internship. I want to study journalism at columbia university. But i don't know where can i get an internship. I was hoping for you guys to give me advice.

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Alex July 7, 2011 at 9:30 am

Anthony,

We have had quite a few posts relating to sports internships – look to them for advice, and almost every single one should have contact info for the person who wrote the post if you wanted to ask them specific questions! Additionally you could search on Internships.com for Sports, Broadcasting, and Journalism internships (run each search separately to see more results). The best thing you can do is start getting in touch with employers or people who have had the type of internship that you want.

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manaal November 15, 2011 at 12:35 pm

hi I'm a freshman in high school and i want to know where i can find a government internship?

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Synthia November 15, 2011 at 5:42 pm

You can search on Internships.com. Over 300 results come up when you do a keyword search for ”Government.” There are also filters if you want to narrow it down by paid/unpaid, virtual, full or part-time and of course by location. Good luck!

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Jason April 9, 2012 at 6:38 pm

Hey guys! Just found this website while searching for information about internships online. you didn't really specify what age you at least have to be to obtain an internship. Is the yougnest you know 16 years old? I mean, I guess that you will need to be able to drive to get to places without having your parents drive you… Oh by the way, I'm only 15. Still lots of time for me left, I know, but I have absolutely NOTHING to do over the summer, except for swim team and some SAT classes (that I find useless). I'm interested in the medical field, though still unsure of which specific profession. Just looking for information about internships, could you guys shoot me an e-mail about them? Would be much appreciated, thanks!

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Laura April 12, 2012 at 6:58 am

I'm in high school as well, and I know that a bunch of my friends attend NYLF (National Youth Leadership Forum) for medicine that is offered at many top-tiered universities around the States. However, I think you had to apply for those earlier in the year, so maybe that's more of an option for your next summer. For a more localized program, I know that the hospitals in my area offer internships and volunteer service for high school students. Of course, you can always talk to your family doctor or someone for advice.
Good luck!

http://www.nylf.org/med/

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Emily June 20, 2012 at 2:02 pm

I am going to be a Junior in High School & I wanted to know if I could find an internship within the Fashion , Casting/Talent Agency/ Theater & or Performing Arts Industries. I am familiar with all industries but would really like to learn the ropes from insiders. Any help, &/or tips?

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Shanikqua July 6, 2012 at 9:00 pm

Hi my name is shanikqua Lewis I'm a junior in high school and I want to be a massusse. I plan on being a physical therapist in the air force and I want experience before I go.

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Kevin September 17, 2012 at 6:52 pm

Hey, I'm interested in the medical field. I'm only 16 and I highly doubt there are internships available but are there any possible ways to get hands on experience in the medical field?

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Crystal October 4, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Hey, i'm interested in becoming a lawyer i'm 16 years old and a sophomore in high school and i want to experience how it is to become a lawyer i just want a hands on experience and also i wanted to do a internship in performing arts are there any out there that i can work in

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James Shaw III October 18, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Hello, my name is James and I'm 15, I was looking for game development companies in Colorado that would take interns (Yea I know….It's most likely never going to happen, but hey, worth a shot right?) and I was just wondering if you could give me a couple of names.

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carolina December 21, 2012 at 6:51 pm

hi im 13 years old and im really interested in being a general pediatric doctor i know im young but i want to find an internship that i could do now in Oregon gresham can anyone help?

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Mawuko Batse December 27, 2012 at 2:55 pm

Hi, I'm 14 and want to be a computer scientist, I'm quite familiar with computer programming, mostly into software development. I currently train myself using books from the web and want to do an internship. Haven't checked with other computer companies yet but what I've found and has become my target is Microsoft. I found some good info at http://www.career.microsoft.com and I was hoping if I could perfect my skills there and well other stuff for the future but thing is I'm in Ghana, this, I believe, will make stuff a little difficult, luckily(I hope) I read something about virtual internships, I just hope something like that can come in handy. I'm really really looking forward to doing an internship at Microsoft. Need help. Thanks.
Facebook:Mawuko Batse

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Renee March 23, 2013 at 10:03 am

Hi I'm a sophmore and 15 in high school I'm looking for a internship at a record label like rise records or fearless records so basically in the music industry. I really love this type of music and want to learn everything about the buisness . I've been researching but I can't find anything so please help me

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Synthia March 25, 2013 at 10:17 am

Hi Renee,

There are lots of music and record label internships on out site, check them out: http://www.internships.com/search/posts?Keywords=Music+Label. Good luck with your search!

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Susana June 11, 2013 at 11:04 am

Hey guys! I am only 16 years old and currently in High School. I was wondering where? and can I? begin looking for a place to get an internship. I want to study to become a pediatrician, so what kind of internship should I get.

Thanks. :)

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Susana June 11, 2013 at 11:07 am

Hey guys. I was wondering where I can get an internship, I want to become a pediatrician so what kind of internship should I get? I'm only 16 and currently in highschool so will that be possible?

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