UChicago Youth Internship Program

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The UChicago Youth Internship Program is a paid, six-week summer employment opportunity at the University of Chicago for local Chicago Public Schools students. 



In this program, interns will work closely with a University staff person in one of several departments including, but not limited to, the Office of Civic Engagement, the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, the Inclusive Economy Lab, and Commercial Real Estate Operations. The Summer 2022 UChicago Youth Internship Program will host in-person interns at the University of Chicago’s Hyde Park campus and at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) in Batavia, Illinois. Applicants for the UChicago Youth Internship Program will be considered for placement in an internship in Hyde Park or Batavia, IL. You can learn more about the Fermilab Target Program by clicking here.

In addition to having a meaningful work experience, interns will also participate in weekly professional development workshops, be paired with a mentor, and have opportunities to socialize with other interns in the program.

Over the course of six weeks, the internship program aims to:

  • Encourage students to prepare for post-secondary pathways by leveraging the University’s unique strengths including mentorship, college readiness and access activities, and career advancement programming.
  • In partnership with local CPS partner schools, help students prepare for a career by developing employability and social and emotional learning (SEL) competencies and skills that are in high demand in the workforce of the future.

Last year, interns supported work across the University including:

  • Conducting research and interviews with other colleges and universities regarding civic engagement initiatives
  • Producing and cohosting a podcast about the college experience
  • Assessing the general public’s understanding of molecular engineering and develop strategies for improving science education

How it works

Interns hired for the UChicago Youth Internship Program will support the strategic area of work for the office or department into which they are placed. The internship program will take place from June 27 – August 4, 2022. Interns will work and attend programming Monday – Thursday, 10:00 a.m.  –  4:00 p.m. (approximately 24 hours per week). Interns will earn a $2,500 stipend by successfully completing all summer internship requirements. Some transportation costs and meals will also be provided. Work responsibilities include:

  • Attend all required meetings/events including the internship orientation, professional development series, and end-of-summer final presentations
  • Complete a summer internship project(s) throughout the duration of the six-week program
  • Provide ongoing support to the internship supervisor by delivering the main internship project(s), communicating project updates throughout the summer, asking questions, and documenting important project milestones
  • Collaborate with other internship program participants, staff, and faculty on a variety of tasks and activities
  • Complete other duties as assigned.

Information sessions

Virtual Information Sessions about the UChicago Youth Internship Program will be held on Tuesday, December 14, 2021 from 5:00 - 6:00pm (CDT) and Wednesday, January 19, 2022 from 5:00 - 6:00pm (CDT). Students, counselors, and families who are interested in learning more about the internship program are encouraged to sign up for an upcoming information session.

Click here to sign up for an information session.

Important dates

Students must submit an application by February 13, 2022. UPDATE: The deadline has been extended to February 20, 2022.

Interviews will be held in March/April 2022.

For Summer 2022, the internship program will run from June 27 – August 4, 2022.

Qualifications and how to apply

The UChicago Youth Internship Program is looking for motivated, hardworking students who:

  • Attend a high school in the Office of Civic Engagement's nine-neighborhood focus area on the South Side: Douglas, Grand Boulevard, Greater Grand Crossing, Hyde Park, Kenwood, Oakland, South Shore, Washington Park, and Woodlawn
  • Are at least 16 years old by June 27, 2022 and authorized to work in the United States
  • Are a current CPS high school sophomore or junior
  • Have at least a 3.0 unweighted GPA
  • Want to have a fun and educational summer experience!

Interns will be required to submit a timely application and participate in an interview to be selected.

Click here to apply by February 20, 2022.

About the University of Chicago

The University of Chicago is an urban research university that has driven new ways of thinking since 1890. Our commitment to free and open inquiry draws inspired scholars to our global campuses, where ideas are born that challenge and change the world.

The University of Chicago is enriched by the city we call home. In partnership with our neighbors, we invest in neighboring communities on the South Side across such areas as health, education, economic growth, and the arts. Together with our medical center, we are the largest private employer on the South Side.

About the Office of Civic Engagement

The Office of Civic Engagement (OCE) is UChicago’s gateway to the South Side and the city, connecting the University to our neighbors.

We work to inform, support, and advance the community engagement of our faculty, students and staff. Working with community partners, OCE strengthens community organizations and small businesses, improves access to education, and connects residents to jobs —all with the goal of advancing economic and social progress in our neighboring communities and the city as a whole.

Frequently asked questions

When is the application due?

Applications are due on February 13, 2022 at 11:55 pm. UPDATE: The deadline has been extended to February 20, 2022.

Do I need my parent/legal guardian’s approval to participate?

Yes, all participants will need their parents or legal guardians to fill out a participation waiver.

What kind of work will I be doing as an intern?

While specific tasks will vary between departments, all interns will have assignments that support projects or initiatives of the department. These assignments could include conducting research, assisting with scheduling, attending meeting and taking notes, and supporting social media marketing. Regardless of where a student is placed, all interns will have an updated resume and a personal statement or short reflection piece about their internship that can be used for future job searches or college applications. Read more about past UChicago Youth Internship Program projects here.

What is the benefit of participating in this program?

Interns who participate in the program will have a meaningful work experience that prepares them for office-based work, whether they want to work immediately after graduation or attend college. Interns will also develop one-on-one relationships with their mentor and supervisor, who will support the intern throughout the program and can serve as a professional reference once the program is over. Lastly, interns will develop several transferrable skills through the weekly professional development series that they can apply to any work setting.

How many interns will be admitted into the UChicago Youth Internship Program?

For Summer 2022, approximately 30 high school students will be offered positions in the UChicago Youth Internship Program.

Does participating increase my chances of getting into UChicago?

Participation in this program does not guarantee admittance to the University of Chicago.

How old do you have to be to participate in this program?

Students must be at least 16 years old by June 27, 2022 and authorized to work in the United States to be considered for this program.

Program contact

For more information about the internship program, please contact ucyip@uchicago.edu.

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