Students who are considering a career in law should ideally begin to cultivate their resumes while they are still in high school. If law is a field you are interested in pursuing, one of the best things you can do to prepare is to seek law internships for high school students.
These internships can serve you well and provide you with many benefits, whether you’re considering becoming an attorney, a judge, or any other law professional. You’ll be able to gain exposure to a wide variety of law careers to see what may be a good fit for you.
The Benefits of Pre-Law Internships Near Me and You
One of the great things about law internships is that no matter where you live, chances are good there’s a program available nearby. Across the country, there are opportunities in many settings, from offices to courtrooms and beyond.
A quick search on the internet for “pre-law internships near me” is likely all it will take to get some exciting results.
Participating in high school law internships can really pad your college admissions applications as well as future job applications. Engaging in these opportunities is valuable in helping you demonstrate your interest in and commitment to the legal field.
You can narrow down your list of career interests and zero in on specific positions you might like in the future. Internships require varying levels of commitment, and the prestige that comes with them also varies.
Prioritizing internships over other extracurriculars should be considered on a case-by-case basis. The higher the prestige of an internship, the more you should consider it a priority. For example, it might be beneficial to prioritize an internship with the national Senate Page Program over small school-centered activities.
High School Law Internships to Consider
The following are some of the best law internships in the country for high school students who are interested in law careers.
San Francisco District Attorney’s Office Internship
High school students and undergraduate students in college can participate in this internship. Those who have an interest in criminal justice can gain first-hand experience by witnessing the diverse opportunities this office offers.
There is no application deadline and no set duration for this program. The internship offers a chance for internists to help with many different tasks, including:
- Contacting witnesses
- Organizing case files
- Preparing case files
- Managing records
In addition, students participating in internships with the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office can help manage subpoenas involving jury trials and pre-trial hearings.
Thurgood Marshall Summer Law Internship
If you are a high school student in New York City and you’re interested in law, investigate your options with the Thurgood Marshall Summer Law Internship. This opportunity runs from April through August, and the application deadline varies.
The Thurgood Marshall Summer Law Internship Program prepares high school students for a law career by helping them partner with legal employers throughout the city. Students can participate in networking events, career training, and panels.
Some of the job assignments include the following:
- Record keeping
- Data entry
- Exhibit organization
- Document filing
- Assisting paralegals
Students can gain much experience by assisting back office personnel and library staff members. Job assignments vary and may also include additional intern duties.
State Bar Association of North Dakota High School Mock Trial Program
The application deadline for this highly sought pre-law program is January 9th. While this particular entry is for North Dakota, the bar associations of many states offer similar law internships for high school students. Many counties and regions do as well.
The North Dakota High School Mock Trial Program offers students an insider’s look at the average workday of lawyers, paralegals, and other law professionals. This program introduces students to the legal system and trial processes while promoting the development of students’ reasoning skills and critical thinking skills.
This program is also exceptional because it prepares interns for competing in the National High School Mock Trial Championship.
National Youth Leadership Forum (NYLF)
The National Youth Leadership Forum (NYLF) is a program that focuses on criminal science investigation and legal careers. Students can participate in mock trials and observe proceedings at local courthouses.
In addition, students are introduced to various career options and paths in the field of law while law professionals provide key information about the trajectory of law school. The tuition required for this program ranges between $3,045 and $3,245. There is no application deadline and the program spans six days.
Passport to Work Youth Employment Services
The Passport to Work Youth Employment Services Program is located in Washington, D.C., and has no set duration and no determined application deadline.
The program is a paid internship that includes seminars to teach students crucial skills for law professionals, such as time management and communication. Students who participate in high school law internships like this are able to experience legislative processes first-hand, despite the fact that many intern tasks are more clerical in nature.
California Innocence Project Internship
This is one of the more popular law internships for high school students who are interested in criminal or post-conviction law. Students who participate in this internship work in the San Diego office of the California Innocence Project, and there are three different sessions available (spring, summer, and fall).
The application deadlines for these sessions are:
- Spring session: November 1
- Summer session: March 1
- Fall session: July 1st
There is no set duration for the sessions, and the program has flexible hours. Ideally, however, it’s preferred that student interns work 15–35 hours per week.
Depending on how busy you are during the spring and fall, those hours may be difficult to achieve. The summer session might be the best for you if you have limited free time during the other sessions.
This excellent program is a paid internship offered by the U.S. Department of the Interior. It’s available to high school students, undergraduates, and graduate students. Various hiring agencies within the Department of the Interior offer these internships, which relate to different careers and fields of study.
Students who become interns with this program get an insider’s point of view on environmental and public policy, and some interns are even able to turn their internship into either a temporary four-year position or a permanent one. There are no application deadlines and no set duration for the DOI Pathways Internship Program.
National Student Leadership Conference Law & Advocacy Program
For nine exciting days, interns of this program at Yale University and Georgetown University get an in-depth look at what a career as an attorney is like. It’s more of an introductory program than an internship; the NSLC’s program is offered in sessions in June, July, and August.
Students who participate in the program get to visit a law school; meet with legal experts; talk with jury members, trial professionals, and forensic experts; and simulate a criminal trial. High school students in grades 9–12 can participate in this exceptional program.
The U.S. Senate Page Program
Perhaps the most widely known law internships for high school students are those within the Senate Page Program. Pages for the senate have been working on the floor since the early 19th century! Today pages are appointed and sponsored by a senator.
The program has application deadlines that vary considerably from one senator to another. Students can serve as a senate page during three sessions:
- The spring session runs from January through June
- The fall session runs from September through January
- The two summer sessions vary
The two summer sessions typically last anywhere from three to four weeks, but the specific duration depends on the legislative calendar each year.
Students must be at least a junior in high school and 16 years old or older. Pages deliver correspondence and materials within the Capitol building and its complex. They are witnesses to the government’s legislative branch and are appointed through the offices of the senators themselves.
Internship with Congresswoman Lucy McBath
Lucy McBath is a representative from Georgia who offers high school students the unique opportunity to intern under a government official. It’s a premium way to garner first-hand experience in law from public policy officials.
Congresswoman McBath offers students part-time and full-time internships in the District of Columbia during the summer, spring, and fall.
Interns enjoy seeing in-depth how a congressional office operates from day to day, and they are also able to attend briefs and hearings. Students who are interns with Lucy McBath will answer calls from constituents and research and draft written records.
Because the internships cover various seasons, there is a rolling application deadline and no set duration for sessions.
NYU High School Law Institute (HSLI) Programs
New York University offers high school students the chance to attend classes that are taught by teams of NYU undergrad law students. These free classes are held on Saturdays. Participants will study various topics, including:
- Moot court
- Constitutional law
- Criminal law
- The impact of the legal system
- Argument evaluation
The classes are discussion-driven, and the NYU students who teach are not only trained but also given plenty of support. Alongside its sister program at Columbia Law School, NYU offers programming that is free of charge throughout the year.
The sessions for the HSLI program run in the fall from September through November and in the spring throughout January and February.
Atlanta Bar Association Summer Law Internships
The Summer Law Internship Program (SLIP) of the Atlanta Bar Association is one of the most popular results that might turn up if you search “pre-law internships near me” online. The program is open to high school students who are interested in learning more about various legal professions and the American legal system.
SLIP has been educating high school student interns for more than 30 years, and students are paid for their internship time, which runs for eight weeks. Student interns gain insight into all facets of the law as they garner valuable experience and build relationships with mentors in the legal system.
Law Internship Opportunities for High School Students
When students become interns, they get real-world experience that is necessary for gaining an advantage after high school. They are exposed to many different situations, careers, and people who are involved with the law at many levels.
Students also gain mentorship and networking opportunities while learning new skills. If you’re interested in a career in law, don’t miss the opportunity to take part in one of the many excellent law internships for high school students.