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12 Neuroscience and Neurobiology Internships for High School Students

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Group of medical students in college hallway

12 Neuroscience and Neurobiology Internships for High School Students

Getting into your dream college can be tough. With more applications pouring in, standing out is key. Internships are a great way to set yourself apart. If you’re into neuroscience and neurobiology, you’re in luck.

Internships let you use everything you’ve learned, gain practical experience, and explore career options. For high schoolers keen on these fields, internships offer valuable insights to shape their future studies and career choices. So, if you’re eager to kickstart your journey to becoming a neuroscientist or neurobiologist, looking into internships is a smart move.

Here are 12 neuroscience and neurobiology internships for high school students. Whether you’re fascinated by the brain’s mysteries or the nervous system’s intricacies, these internships let you delve into neuroscience while enhancing your college applications.

1. Clinical Neuroscience Immersion Experience (CNI-X) at Stanford University

  • Location: Stanford University
  • Cost: $2590
  • Program Date: June 17 – August 2, 2024
  • Application Deadline: March 1, 2024
  • Eligibility: High school students

CNI-X bridges the gap between neuroscience and society. Its curriculum covers a range of specialized topics in clinical neuroscience, such as Neurosurgery and Ethics, Interventional Psychiatry, and NeuroLaw and Forensic Psychiatry. They describe it as a “sampler menu” of the vast field of neuroscience.

During your time on the Stanford campus, your schedule will be packed with lectures on various topics, group brainstorming sessions, and networking with your peers. Working in assigned teams, you’ll collaborate to generate innovative solutions to social issues stemming from neuroscientific challenges. This interdisciplinary project will enhance your critical thinking skills and allow you to work alongside other passionate students.

2. Youth Neurology Education and Research Program at the Massachusetts General Hospital

  • Location: Massachusetts General Hospital
  • Cost: No cost
  • Program Date: July 1 – August 9​​, 2024
  • Application Deadline: March 1, 2024
  • Eligibility: Students living or studying in Massachusetts

Mass General, one of Harvard Medical School’s oldest and biggest teaching hospitals, has an exciting opportunity for high school seniors and recent graduates.

When the program starts, you’re paired up with another intern, one from high school and one from college. Together, you’re matched with a mentor from the MGH Neurology faculty.

For six weeks, you follow a schedule from 8:30 in the morning until 5 in the evening. You attend sessions led by top neurologists, do lab work, and even go to lab meetings. At the end of the program, you and your partner give a presentation to your peers, mentors, faculty, and family. This whole setup helps you study deeply and get ready for doing research in college.

Since it’s a teaching hospital, MGH is ready to help you with anything related to your career, like advising, funding, or applications.

student doctors sitting around a table while one of them is looking at the camera smiling

3. The Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience (MPFI) Summer Research Internship

  • Location: Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience
  • Cost: No cost
  • Program Date: June 17 – July 26, 2024
  • Application Deadline: March 4, 2024
  • Eligibility: High school students from Palm Beach or Martin County

The MPFI internship has a Neuroscience Internship Track with an engaging hands-on curriculum.

You’ll spend 40 hours a week doing intensive lab work, learning things like genetic engineering and microscopy. After six weeks with the guidance of MPFI mentors, you’ll have a strong understanding of how the brain works and advanced imaging techniques that neuroscientists often use.

You’ll get paid for all your hard work, and you’ll use that money for your final research project. At the end of the program, you’ll share your project with other researchers. In the past, interns have worked on projects about neural circuits, real-time phase extraction, and new technologies in neuroscience.

4. Stanford Institutes of Medicine Summer Research Program

  • Location: Stanford University’s Institutes of Medicine
  • Cost: Free
  • Program Date: June 10 – August 1, 2024
  • Application Deadline: February 24, 2024
  • Eligibility: High school juniors and seniors

The Stanford Institutes of Medicine Summer Research Program (SIMR) is an internship lasting eight weeks, made for high school juniors and seniors who are interested in biomedical research. Happening from June 10 to August 1, 2024, it gives you a chance to do hands-on research with mentors at Stanford University’s Institutes of Medicine and selected departments.

When you apply to SIMR, you can pick from eight research areas, like Immunology, Neurobiology, Cancer Biology, and others. If you prefer, there’s also a bioengineering bootcamp instead of lab research.

Besides doing research, SIMR focuses on building skills and professional development, such as learning lab techniques, analyzing data, teamwork, and presenting research. There are also seminars and workshops to help you explore different career paths in biomedicine. SIMR is committed to being inclusive and diverse, welcoming students from all backgrounds to bring different perspectives to the research environment.

5. BRAINYAC at Columbia University

  • Location: Zuckerman Institute, Columbia University
  • Cost: Unspecified
  • Program Date: Unspecified
  • Application Deadline: Unspecified
  • Eligibility: High school students

This hands-on laboratory experience provides opportunities to collaborate with actual scientists and gain thorough training in a research setting.

If chosen, you’ll spend seven weeks working on a research project under the guidance of a mentor. Additionally, you’ll have the chance to work in Columbia’s neuroscience labs and interact with graduate students, postdocs, faculty, and former BRAINYAC members. Throughout the program, you’ll learn essential skills such as data analysis, reading scientific papers, using microscopes, and conducting dissections.

This program has been said to have a profound impact on its students and the Columbia community.

6. Johns Hopkins Internship in Brain Sciences (JHIBS)

  • Location: JHU East Baltimore Campus
  • Cost: No specified cost
  • Program Date: June – August 2024
  • Application Deadline: March 1, 2024
  • Eligibility: Juniors or seniors from Baltimore City high schools

JHIBS is an 8-week internship where you get personal guidance, educational help, and career advice in neuroscience and neurobiology. It’s in-person.

The program aims to help high school students from communities that don’t have much representation. They pick six smart students and connect them with mentors from Hopkins faculty. The goal is to train a diverse group of future neuroscience researchers and scientists.

If you’re chosen for the internship, you can shadow Johns Hopkins neurologists at the clinic, attend seminars about the brain, talk about your career plans in weekly sessions, work on your own research projects, and show your work at the end in a presentation.

Five medical students wearing scrubs as they walk inside the lobby of a medical school

7. Duke University Neuroscience Experience (DUNE)

  • Location: Duke University Campus
  • Cost: Unspecified
  • Program Date: June 10 – August 2, 2024
  • Application Deadline: March 1, 2024
  • Eligibility: Rising high school juniors and seniors

DUNE’s main aim is to support STEM enthusiasts from underprivileged backgrounds.

Because there aren’t many neuroscientists from diverse backgrounds, DUNE wants to make sure that students from all walks of life have an equal chance. They do this by creating an interesting and informative neuroscience program.

During these eight weeks, you’ll be matched with a Duke neuroscience lab, where you’ll get to use advanced equipment. When you’re not working on your research project with your mentor, you’ll attend talks by leaders in the field and learn about different careers in neuroscience.

DUNE encourages interns to be curious about science, allows them to experiment and learn from mistakes, and helps them move forward in their academic journey.

8. Neuroscape Summer High School Internship

  • Location: UC San Francisco (Mission Bay Campus)
  • Cost: Unspecified
  • Program Date: Decided as per student’s availability
  • Application Deadline: Unspecified
  • Eligibility: High school students studying in SFUSD Schools

Neuroscape is an excellent chance for those keen on medical technology. Started in 2017, this program has a strong focus on students and aims to prepare them for a career in research.

If you’re chosen, you’ll have the chance to work on your own with a team of mentors. You’ll also attend group sessions every week where you’ll learn about exciting topics like neuroanatomy and machine learning. With a blend of modern innovation and traditional research training, this internship could really broaden your perspective on the medical and science field.

9. Ladder Internships: Health Tech and Mental Health

  • Location: Remote
  • Cost: $1490 – $5600 (financial aid available)
  • Program Date: Unspecified
  • Application Deadline: Unspecified
  • Eligibility: High school and gap year students

Another thrilling opportunity for students skilled in technology is the Health Tech program at Ladders Internships.

Completely dedicated to gaining professional experience, Ladders connects chosen students directly with relevant start-ups, where they receive guidance from seasoned industry experts. If you’re someone who learns best through hands-on experience, then Ladder’s step-by-step action plan will suit you perfectly. In this plan, you’ll brainstorm ideas, improve them, put them into action, and present an entirely independent, real-world project in your preferred field.

10. Explorations in Neuroscience Research Internship Program at Ohio State University

  • Location: Ohio State University’s College of Medicine
  • Cost: No cost
  • Program Date: June 17 – August 2, 2024
  • Application Deadline: April 1, 2024
  • Eligibility: High school students

This opportunity, funded by the National Institute of Health (NIH), is great for students who want to get hands-on experience in neuroscience, especially studying brain injuries and diseases.

The best part of the program is that it helps you build a strong foundation for your future in college and beyond. During the internship, you not only get matched with mentors but also work alongside lab technicians and graduate students. This helps you gain valuable experience that will set you apart in the future.

Once you’re chosen, you’ll have access to OSU’s facilities, you’ll join the Explorations in Neuroscience Journal Club, and you’ll learn how to analyze and write scientific papers—all while getting paid!

Medical students sitting and talking at the university

11. High School Summer Internship Program (HS-SIP)

  • Location: Various NIH campuses
  • Cost: Unspecified
  • Program Date: Duration unspecified; program will start in June 15, 2024
  • Application Deadline: February 16, 2024
  • Eligibility: 11th and 12th graders

Yes, indeed! There’s another NIH-funded program centered on biomedical research. With HS-SIP, you have the chance to expand your understanding of neuroscience while also gaining insight into the broader healthcare sector. Research groups specific to various fields are stationed across NIH campuses, including the main one in Bethesda, MD. 

Throughout your internship, you’ll participate in development programs to strengthen your scientific fundamentals, receive expert guidance on your academic path, and wrap up by presenting your research on Summer Poster Day. Building connections within the extensive NIH network of aspiring and established neuroscientists is definitely a major advantage!

12. Neurology High School Scholars Program at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP)

  • Location: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Cost: Unspecified
  • Program Date: July 7 to August 9, 2024
  • Application Deadline: March 1, 2024
  • Eligibility: High school sophomores, juniors, and seniors

The Neurology High School Scholars Program at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia provides high school students with a five-week paid internship to work closely with neurologists or neuroscientists on research projects, shadow physicians, and attend educational sessions. You’ll complete a poster presentation at the end of the program to showcase your project results. Applications open on February 2 and close on March 1, requiring essays and letters of recommendation, with top candidates invited for interviews​​.

Medical interns

Final Thoughts

As you think about going to college, keep in mind that internships can help you get closer to your dreams in neuroscience and neurobiology. When you get real-world experience in these areas during high school, you’re preparing yourself for success in your studies and future career.

At AdmissionSight, we understand the importance of internships in shaping your college applications and preparing you for the road ahead. With our expertise in college admissions consulting, we can help you navigate the process of finding and securing the right internship opportunities to bolster your profile and stand out to admissions committees.

So, as you explore your options and plan for the future, remember that internships are not just about adding lines to your resume—they’re about gaining valuable skills, insights, and experiences that will serve you well in college and beyond. With the right guidance and support, you can make the most of these opportunities and take meaningful steps toward achieving your academic and career goals.

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