The Role of High School Internships in College Admissions

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High school internships are slowly becoming the norm. They are becoming increasingly popular and essential to any individual’s college application process. While we know that internships are a staple in college and graduate-level education, we often underestimate their importance for high schoolers.

This article will explore the role that high school internships play in college admissions and why they are critical in helping students stand out from the crowd or the pool of applicants. Whether you are a parent, instructor, or student, the information below will be eye-opening and provide information about the topic.

What Is the Main Goal of Most Internships?What Is the Main Goal of Most Internships?

According to Augsburg University, academic internships allow you to “better understand theories, ideas, and practices of your discipline or major.” So, the importance of internship lies in understanding the benefit it provides the interns.

The main goal of most internships is to provide individuals with practical, hands-on experience in their chosen field or industry. They serve as means for an individual to gain exposure to real-world work environments, learn novel skills, and build on their network of professional contacts.

However, high schoolers can benefit from internships the most as it allows them to clarify their career goals and interests. For instance, going through a computer science internship and a marketing one will enable you to choose which career path you want to pursue further in college.

On the other hand, for the organizations offering those internships, the main goal is to identify and evaluate potential future employees and what skills they might be lacking. They also allow them to contribute and gain experience in the organization.

The organization can start building a network and relationships with schools and universities after offering internships. In other words, it fosters a pipeline of future talent.

But what about the significance of internships to society? To highlight the main points, we compiled a small list:

  • Prepares future generations for the workforce.
  • Helps students understand the expectations and requirements of their chosen career path.
  • Offers employers the opportunity to identify and evaluate employees.
  • Promotes innovation and economic growth by developing a workforce equipped to address the demands of industry and society.
  • Contributes to the development of well-rounded and educated individuals in the society.

7 Benefits of Internships for High School Students

7 Benefits of Internships for High School Students

The benefits of high school internships are unique and can vary from one person to another. It helps develop social and build a variety of skills. You can further find a more extensive explanation of the numerous benefits that stand out below.

Career Exploration

As discussed earlier, internships can allow students to explore various careers. It drives them to understand better how the world works and what it takes to work within the industry of their choice.

Skill development

It is no secret that undergoing an internship can provide you with novel skills that are difficult to attain anywhere else. It can teach you a variety of abilities, including problem-solving, teamwork, communication, and time management. All these skills are vital to your everyday, professional, and social life.

Confidence building

Have you ever heard of imposter syndrome? It is when individuals doubt their skills and abilities, especially in a workspace, and are afraid of being exposed as fraud. This is often diminished through internships as you build confidence and take on new challenges. It provides you with a sense of independence and self-reliance.

Fun and engaging work

Some internships, especially ones in the creative fields, can be highly engaging and fun for students. It also allows them to pursue their passions and interests more organized and professional.

College admissions advantage

According to College Board, internships will allow you to stand out when applying. High school internships can also help you gain an advantage in a competitive college admissions environment.


When you are off to college, you might consider looking for a job or another experience while studying. Sitting through an internship during high school allows you to build a network of individuals who can help you reach your goal and find ventures.

Real-world experience

Regardless of how much you study, the skills you attain are not beneficial until you apply them. Hence, when participating in an internship, students can apply what they have learned and gain first-hand experience in a more professional setting.

Do Internships Help College in Admission?

Do Internships Help College in Admission?

Do internships help college admission? In a nutshell, of course, they do. If you reflect upon the six ways to stand out when applying to college, you will notice that having a diverse list of extracurricular activities is always an advantage.

What better way to demonstrate those extracurriculars than to take summer internships and learn how to apply your passions in a real-world setting? Participating in training can show a student’s commitment to a particular field or their desire to learn more about life.

In addition, when admission officers evaluate your application, them finding out that you took an internship will always be a bonus. However, in situations like this, it is always beneficial to attain a recommendation letter from the person responsible for you throughout the internship.

Moreover, as internships allow you to build a network of professional contact, this might be impressive when you apply to colleges.

But what do high school interns do? Since you have yet to specialize in a particular field of study, you will not be responsible for the same tasks a college student would be. However, a general list of things to expect can include the following:

  • Assisting with administrative tasks, such as filing, data entry, and answering the phone.
  • Shadowing other professionals and learning about the various roles within the organization.
  • Conducting research and data alongside other, more qualified individuals.
  • Participating in meetings, stating your opinions, putting input, and attending presentations to learn about the organization.
  • Supporting projects and initiatives by contributing ideas, conducting research, and creating presentations.
  • Providing support throughout events and outreach efforts.
  • Developing and implementing novel initiatives, innovative programs, social media posts, or blog articles.

Overall, you will experience many activities and tasks you probably never did before. This will give you vital information about choosing a college major later in life.

What Is the Role of Internships in College Admission?

What Is the Role of Internships in College Admission?

We already know the importance of internships in college. These allow you to explore your field of study further. However, this section will focus on the role of internships in college admissions.

Demonstrate interest

An internship in a particular field related to the one you are applying to portrays you as a serious and career-oriented individual. You come off as a proactive individual.

Skill development

As mentioned earlier, the range of skills you learn will come in handy in college. This shows that you have a high work ethic, aim to pursue your interests, and have the ability to portray your skills.

Strong resumes

Some colleges require an extensive resume. This is where you have the most advantage. Internships on your CV or resume will make you stand out in front of the college admissions committee.


As you undergo an internship, you meet a wide range of individuals. While this helps with building your professional network, it will also be beneficial in other ways. For instance, it portrays that you can communicate and handle various personalities, jobs, and people.

Relevant coursework

An internship throughout your school years will likely drive you to choose the right field of study. Hence, the skills you learn will allow you to identify areas where you need to improve your skills, leading you to take more relevant courses in college.

Wrapping Things Up: The Role of High School Internships in College Admissions

We covered above the role of high school internships in college admission, its benefits, and what one does throughout those internships. In a nutshell, we encourage you to pursue training while you are still in school, as it allows you to explore your options, provides you with an edge throughout college applications, and pushes you to gain novel skills.

Remember that most colleges do not ask for internships as a mandatory part of the application. However, the more competitive the school you want to apply to, the better it is to have such experiences in your resume. While no one will push you to gain experience, this is one of the various ways to stand out in the pool of applicants and allows you to explore multiple fields!

Check out our ultimate internship guide for college students here.

> 11 Colleges with Best Internships

> 5 Best Websites to Find Internships

> 3 Student Teaching Internships

> 3 Top Summer Internships for College Students

> 5 Best Internships for HR Students

Picture of Professor Conquer
Professor Conquer

Professor Conquer started Conquer Your Exam in 2018 to help students feel more confident and better prepared for their tough tests. Prof excelled in high school, graduating top of his class and receiving admissions into several Ivy League and top 15 schools. He has helped many students through the years tutoring and mentoring K-12, consulting seniors through the college admissions process, and writing extensive how-to guides for school.

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