At High Tech High, we make sure to provide connections to the “adult world” to students at every grade level, but it gets really serious in Junior Year: juniors aren’t just “connected” to the adult world – for four weeks, they’re part of it, working full-time as an intern in a professional organization.
These internships aren’t just about filing papers and making coffee. Working with an on-site mentor, every student designs and completes a personal project that benefits the organization.
Advice for future interns
Features of the Internship Program
- All High Tech High juniors are required to complete an internship at an off-campus organization. The internship consists of a four-week, full-time immersion at the worksite. Students receive credit for successfully completing their internship and related course work.
- Each student is paired with a workplace mentor who understands and supports the goals of the program. Mentors communicate regularly with the student’s teachers about their progress and their attendance.
- All interns develop a substantial project with the mentor. This project should make a meaningful contribution to the organization.
- After their internship, every student gives a Presentation of Learning to their mentor, their teachers, and their fellow-students. This culminating event celebrates the student’s accomplishments and offers an occasion for reflection and critique.
- The internship is supported by the school, in which students prepare for and reflect on their internship experiences. Intern assignments include a journal, a photo essay, an in-depth interview with their mentor, creation of an internship portfolio, and completion of their internship project.
What students need to do in order to get credit for internship
- Work for 30 hours a week on-site at your organization
- Meet every day with your mentor
- Work with your mentor to design and complete a project that benefits the organization
- Document your internship and share it with your teachers and your fellow students
- Present what you’ve learned in your internship to your parents, teachers, mentor, and fellow students
The Internship Project
The student and mentor work together to plan the student’s internship project. It is important to develop a project proposal during the first week of internship (if not before), to ensure that both the mentor and the intern have a clear goal to work towards.
In the past, interns have worked on projects that range from event and marketing support projects, web design projects, recruitment and retention projects with HR department, networking, software and hardware support, and public relations support, including presentations in public forums and in the community.