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Summer internships for high school students

In 2019, from June to August, 30 high school students attended the STEM to SHTEM (Science, Humanities, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) summer program hosted by Prof. Tsachy Weissman and the Stanford Compression Forum. During this summer program, the high schoolers pursued fun research projects in various domains under the supervision of 18 mentors. Students ended their research experience with video presentations and explained their work as part of an online journal.

Below is the information for the 2019 internship program. Please stay tuned for updated information on the 2020 program.

The Stanford Compression Forum is excited to announce its new summer internship program for the Summer of 2019. We are looking for passionate high school students interested in pursuing fun research projects over the summer.

This unpaid internship is intended to provide early exposure to research transcending traditional disciplinary boundaries. Students will be grouped to multifaceted projects that will benefit from their existing interests and strengths, while exposing them to new areas. Projects will be mentored by students, faculty and staff of the Stanford Compression Forum and its affiliated organizations. Themes will span and combine the science of information and communication, engineering, the arts, linguistics, psychology, biology, neuroscience, computer science, technology, philosophy, design and more.    


  • Must be currently enrolled in high school (i.e. current 8th grade students are not eligible, current high school seniors are eligible)

  • Must be 14 or older by June 2019

  • Must be willing to come to Stanford consistently for a minimum of 5 consecutive weeks (we do not provide housing)


Internship schedules will be individually tailored to accommodate the availability of those admitted. The requirements for scheduling are:

  • The internship must start on or after Monday, June 3, 2019.

  • The internship must end on or before Friday, August 9, 2019.

  • The internship must be at least 5 consecutive weeks long.


The application deadline has passed. Applications for Summer 2020 will be accepted starting early 2020. If you would like to be notified when applications for Summer 2020 opens, you may sign up here.

Financial Assistance:

Although this internship is unpaid, if commuting to Stanford and/or spending the time needed to participate in this program would pose a financial burden, please let us know in your application.

We’d love to be able to admit all applicants. But that is unlikely to be realistic. If you’re not admitted, it’s because we failed to integrate you into any of the few projects we were able to create within our highly constrained and relatively small group of potential mentors. We would then encourage you to apply again next year.   

If you have questions/concerns, reach us at


  • If you enjoy playing an instrument, can provide a link to a youtube video of you playing

  • If you’re into poetry, can send us a poem you’ve written

  • If you’re into gaming, can provide a link to a video of you playing

  • If you’re into robotics, can provide a link to a video of a robot you built in action

  • If you’re into acting, can provide a link to a video of a play in which you performed

  • If you’re into dancing, a link to a video of you dancing

  • If you’re into math, show us a math problem you enjoyed and for which you were able to find an elegant solution

  • If you’re into computer coding, send us code for a cool program you’ve written     

  • If you’re into design, a description + photo of something you designed

  • If you’re into building, a description + photo of something you built

  • If you’re into an art, a description + photo/link/file of something you created

  • If you’re into volunteering, a description of something you volunteered to do or organize that you think did good to others

  • If you’re into comedy, send us some of your jokes or a link to a video of you performing stand up  

  • If you’re into filmography, a link to a short film whose creation you were involved in

  • If you’re into a sport, a video of you in action  

  • If you consider yourself an activist, describe an action you took or event you were involved in that was geared toward making the change you want to see   

  • Maybe you’re into something which is not yet a thing, something of a totally new nature, hard to classify into any existing area. We’d love for you to choose to exhibit or describe a sample from your activity related to that. 

Example of a project (from last year):

Humans are awesome

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • When will registration open for 2020 summer program?
  • Applications will be released early 2020.

  • How many rounds of application are there? Is there a waiting list?
  • We conduct a single round of applications, and there is no waiting list.

  • How many high school students are typically accepted?
  • In our first year (Summer 2019), we accepted ~40 students. This number may change next year.

  • Can international students apply?
  • We currently cannot accept international students.

  • Does the program typically involve group mentoring or is it primarily 1:1 research mentoring?
  • Students are mentored in groups in sizes ranging from 2-5.

  • Does the program provide housing?
  • We do not provide housing. Students are responsible for having a living arrangement and commuting to campus. Note that students under the age of 18 are not allowed to live without residential supervision.

  • Do potential applicants need to have any prior research experience?
  • No. Students are not expected to have prior research experience. We especially encourage students without any research experience to apply.

  • Does this program include an interview component?
  • No.

  • What particular skills do you look for in potential applicants?
  • We are looking for driven students who are eager to learn in a fast-paced environment.

  • Can research projects completed during this internship be submitted to any Science fairs such as Google Science Fair or Regeneron or Siemens/Discovery Edu?
  • This is determined on an individual basis during the internship.