21 Law Internships for High School Students – 2024

April 8, 2024

Law Internships for High School Students

High school can be an excellent time to explore potential career paths, expand your resume, and gain valuable experience. In particular, pursuing an internship during high school can help you identify professional goals and narrow your college search accordingly, while also strengthening your applications. Internships constitute work or extracurricular experiences, and can also result in strong letters of recommendation. There are internships designed specifically for high school students in practically every field, from medicine to computer science to business. Here, we focus on high school law internships, which can benefit both students hoping to attend law school after college, and also those interested in law-adjacent fields like government or political journalism.

Read on for more, including:

  • 20 law internships for high school students
  • How to find a local law internship
  • What to expect from a law internship

20 Law Internships for High School Students

Unfortunately, most law internships are reserved for law students or pre-law undergraduates. However, while not exhaustive, the following list demonstrates the types of law internship opportunities and summer law programs available for high school students—both national and regional. While the internships listed are paid or unpaid, and typically take place over 4-8 weeks, summer law programs tend to offer 1-2 week intensive learning experiences.

Summer law programs can offer incredible experiences and insights into the field of law, but also tend to be quite expensive (although most offer scholarships and flexible payment plans).

1) American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Summer Advocacy Program

In this program, high school students learn about advocacy, legal strategies, and community organizing from prominent lawyers, lobbyists, and experts.

  • Pay/Cost: ~$2,700 tuition covers food, lodging, and activities. Scholarships are available.
  • Location: Washington D.C.
  • Duration/Dates: 1 week in the summer (typically July)
  • Eligibility: High School students aged 15-18

2) Atlanta Bar Association Summer Law Internship Program (SLIP)

The Atlanta Bar Association offers internships for Atlanta-area high school students. In addition to providing valuable experience and furthering students’ understanding of the law, the program aims to promote mentor relationships and increase diversity in the legal field. If accepted, you’ll be placed with a law firm, corporation, or public office.

  • Pay/Cost: Interns are paid $2,000 total for the six weeks ($333 per week).
  • Location: Atlanta area
  • Duration/Dates: 6 weeks from late May to mid-July (no conflicts or flexible dates permitted)
  • Eligibility: Open to high school juniors and seniors. Interns are not allowed to hold second jobs or pursue commitments that conflict with or impact their internships.

3) Baltimore Law Links Internship

Law Links places students in law firms and law-related agencies. In addition to their specific internships, students also participate in the Law & Leadership Institute—a 50-hour seminar held on Wednesday mornings over the course of the program at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law.

  • Pay/Cost: Interns are paid $15/hour and are outfitted with professional attire from either Ann Taylor or Joseph A. Banks
  • Location: Baltimore
  • Duration: 7 weeks over the summer
  • Eligibility: Applicants must be in their sophomore or junior year of high school. Students must attend a Baltimore city public high school and live in Baltimore City.

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4) Brooklyn District Attorney High School Internship

This internship provides students the opportunity to observe and contribute to the work of the district attorney’s office. Duties include assisting in investigations, preparing and compiling documents, attending trials, and more. All interns are assigned to a general trial zone or to a specialized bureau/unit (homicide, civil rights, crime strategies, etc.)

  • Pay/Cost: Interns receive a $150 weekly stipend and Metro Cards
  • Location: Brooklyn
  • Duration/Dates: Varies
  • Eligibility: Must be a high school sophomore, junior or senior who lives in or attends school in Brooklyn

 5) Broward County Law Office of the Public Defender Intern Summer Justice Program

The Broward County Youth Summer Justice Program exposes high school students to the inner workings of the court system. Participants shadow attorneys and observe court proceedings. The program concludes with a mock trial.

  • Pay/Cost: Community service hours are awarded upon completion of the program.
  • Location: Broward County, Florida
  • Duration/Dates: 2 weeks during the summer
  • Eligibility: Summer Justice applicants must be between 15-18 years old and have completed 9th grade at a high school located in Broward County. A GPA of 2.0 or higher is required.

 6) Communities in Schools of Houston Summer Legal Internship Program

In partnership with the Houston Bar Association, CIS places students in internships at Houston-area law firms, corporate legal departments, and public interest agencies.

  • Pay/Cost: Paid Internships; salaries determined by employers
  • Location: Houston-area
  • Duration/Dates: 8-week summer internship
  • Eligibility: Applicants must be juniors or seniors who attend campuses supported by CIS of Houston

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7) Dallas Bar Summer Law Intern Program

This program places student interns in Dallas-area law firms and corporate legal departments.

  • Pay/Cost: Paid internships; salaries determined by employers
  • Location: Dallas
  • Duration/Dates: 4-8 weeks during the summer, full or part-time opportunities available
  • Eligibility: Applicants must be Dallas ISD high school juniors with an academic average of 85 or above, and with no more than 10 absences

8) Envision Law Program

In collaboration with Stanford Law School, this intensive program offers hands-on experiences and opportunities to learn from legal experts. The program culminates in a mock trial where students make opening and closing statements and examine witnesses.

  • Pay/Cost: $5,145 tuition includes room & board, as well as site visits & transportation during the program. Scholarships and payment plans available.
  • Location: Palo Alto
  • Duration/Dates: Several 10-day sessions available over the course of the summer
  • Eligibility: N/A

9) Judicial Youth Corps Program

Run by the Supreme Judicial Court’s Public Information Office, this intensive educational summer internship program teaches high school students about the Massachusetts court system and the rule of law. Students work with judges, lawyers, clerks, probation officers, and other court personnel.

  • Pay/Cost: Paid summer internships
  • Location: Boston, Springfield, and Worcester
  • Duration/Dates: 6 week summer session
  • Eligibility: Open to sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Boston applicants must be residents of Boston. Worcester and Springfield applicants must attend a high school located in Worcester or Springfield, respectively

Law Internships for High School Students (Continued)

10) Legal Outreach Summer Law Institute

The SLI is hosted by seven law schools in New York City, and is designed specifically for rising ninth-graders. Students study criminal justice topics taught by law students, interact with lawyers, attend field trips to legal institutions, and participate in a mock-trial. Completion of the SLI renders students eligible to apply to the 4-year College Bound program.

  • Pay/Cost: Participants receive a stipend
  • Location: Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, Queens, and Staten Island
  • Dates/Duration: First week of July-First week of August, Monday through Friday from 9 AM-4 PM
  • Eligibility: Eighth-grade students from Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, Queens, and Staten Island are eligible to apply

11) Louisiana State Bar Association Suit Up for the Future High School Summer Legal Institute and Intern Program

This program is coordinated by the Louisiana State Bar Association, in partnership with the Louisiana Supreme Court, Just the Beginning, and Louisiana law schools. Over the course of 3 weeks, students attend an abridged law school session, tour law schools and courts, and participate in an internship consisting of job shadowing at law offices and courts.

  • Pay/Cost: Students who complete the program will be eligible for a stipend of up to $250
  • Location: New Orleans
  • Dates/Duration: 3 weeks in June
  • Eligibility: Open to students entering the 11th or 12th grade or entering their first year of college. Students must commit to attending all three weeks of the program.

12) Manhattan District Attorney’s High School Internship Program

This internship familiarizes students with the criminal justice system and provides opportunities to participate in workshops and mock trials.

  • Pay/Cost: Interns are paid minimum wage
  • Location: Manhattan
  • Duration/Dates: 5-week summer session
  • Eligibility: Applicants must be high school sophomores, juniors, or seniors who live in or attend school in Manhattan

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13) Miami-Dade State Attorney High School Volunteer Internship Program

The Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office is one of the largest prosecutorial offices in the country. High school interns receive hands-on experience in the criminal justice system and assume a range of responsibilities, including researching case law and attending hearings.

  • Pay/Cost: Unpaid, although there are opportunities to earn school credit
  • Location: Miami-Dade County
  • Duration/Dates: Varies
  • Eligibility: Open to high school students in Miami-Dade County

14) Nashville Bar Association High School Intern Summer Program

This program offers full-time summer internships in law firms, corporate legal departments, and government law offices in Metro Nashville.

  • Pay/Cost: Paid Internships ($10-15/hour)
  • Location: Nashville
  • Duration/Dates: Early June-Late July
  • Eligibility: Open to juniors and seniors

15) National Student Leadership Conference Law & Advocacy Program

This program offers immersive experiences at Georgetown University, University of Michigan, and Yale University. Students gain hands-on experience in a mock courtroom and are mentored by practicing attorneys. They also visit a law school and meet with trial, jury, and forensic experts.

  • Pay/Cost: Tuition ranges from $3,895-$4,095. Flexible payment plans are available, and NSLC awards more than $500,000 in scholarships each year
  • Location: Georgetown University, University of Michigan, or Yale University
  • Duration/Dates: 9-day program offered various weeks from June to early August
  • Eligibility: N/A

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16) National Youth Leadership Forum: Law & CSI

The NYLF law program provides opportunities for high schoolers to observe legal proceedings and participate in a mock trial. The program also enlists law school professionals to introduce students to various career paths. Past speakers have included FBI profilers, Supreme Court justices, former U.S. attorneys general, and more.

  • Pay/Cost: $4,195 tuition includes room & board, as well as site visits & transportation during the program. Payment plans and scholarships are available.
  • Location: Washington D.C.
  • Duration/Dates: Several eight-day sessions available over the summer
  • Eligibility: N/A

17) Senate Page Program

The Senate Page Program is competitive, prestigious, and rigorous. In order to apply, you must be sponsored by a current senator (either from your state or, more unusually, a senator from another state). Applications vary by senator and state. If accepted, you’ll live in a dorm, go to school in the mornings (if it’s a fall or spring term), and then work in the afternoons. Duties include delivering correspondence and legislative material within the Capitol, as well as preparing the chambers for Senate sessions.

  • Pay/Cost: Unpaid Internship
  • Location: Washington D.C.
  • Duration/Dates: Varies by term
  • Fall Term: Early September-Late January
  • Spring Term: Late January-Early June
  • Summer Session I: Early June-Late June
  • Summer Session II: Mid/Late July-Early August
  • Eligibility:
    1. Pages must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States or subject to agreements of the Department of State, and must have a Social Security number.
    2. Semester Page eligibility is limited to juniors in high school who will be 16 or 17 years old on or before the date of appointment.
    3. Summer Page eligibility is open to rising juniors and rising seniors who will be 16 or 17 years old on or before the date of appointment. Students who are 18 years old may not be appointed
    4. Pages must verify a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0/B  to qualify for school attendance
    5. Pages must provide a general health assessment completed by a licensed physician and a certification of immunization.
    6. Pages are required to be covered by health insurance; if not covered, they will be required to enroll in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program.

18) Teach Democracy Expanding Horizons Institute

EHI provides first-generation, college-bound high school students with opportunities for interactive seminars and paid summer internships, including those in the legal field.

  • Pay/Cost: Paid internships; salaries depend on employers
  • Location: Los Angeles area
  • Duration/Dates: March 26-July 11
  • Eligibility: The program is designed for students whose parents have not attended college. Applicants must be a sophomore or junior attending a Los Angeles County Title I School.

Law Internships for High School Students (Continued)

19) Thurgood Marshall Summer Law Internship Program

This program places New York City public school high school students with legal employers (law firms, corporations, non-profit organizations, and government agencies) for full-time summer internships. The program also provides programming and development workshops before, during, and after the summer to help students get the most out of their internships and prepare for a career in law.

  • Pay/Cost: Interns typically receive minimum wage, though it varies depending on employer.
  • Location: New York City
  • Duration/Dates: Internships are typically between 6-8 weeks, but the program officially begins in March with pre-employment workshops.
  • Eligibility: Must be a NYC public high school student

20) US Department of Justice (DOJ) Pathways Internship Program

This competitive program is designed for high school, college, and graduate students. If accepted, you are placed in a department within the federal government relevant to your interests, including the Office of the Attorney General or the Office of Legal Policy.

  • Pay/Cost: Paid Internship
  • Location: Varies
  • Duration/Dates: Varies
  • Eligibility: For students who are currently enrolled in a degree-seeking program at an accredited school from the high school to postgraduate level.

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21) US Environmental Protection Agency Internship Programs in Pollution Prevention

Pollution Prevention internship programs are available across the country—from Arizona to Idaho to Pennsylvania. Many of the programs allow participants to gain real-world experience in policymaking and environmental law.

  • Pay/Cost: Compensation varies
  • Location: Varies
  • Duration/Dates: Varies
  • Eligibility: Varies

How to Find a Local Law Internship

Law internship opportunities for high schoolers are not limited to national or well-known programs. While many larger cities and some states have widespread, established programs, most areas do not. If you’re interested in pursuing local opportunities, consider:

  • Reaching out directly to nearby law firms, even if they don’t advertise internships;
  • Contacting your state or regional bar associations to ask about opportunities;

Law Internships for High School Students (Continued)

  • Phoning or emailing your local, state, or national representatives to inquire about internship opportunities; and/or
  • Exploring the websites of local law schools. While most will only list internship opportunities for college or law school students, some will provide more expansive lists or may even offer their own enrichment programs for high schoolers.

When conducting your search, remember to consult with guidance counselors and consider when to apply for summer internships. Be prepared with a resume, and keep your options open.

What to Expect from a Law Internship?

A law internship might include various responsibilities, including:

  • Researching Laws
  • Drafting Legal Documents
  • Assisting Supervising Attorneys in Preparing Cases (drafting memorandums, participating in deposition preparation, helping conduct pretrial interviews, etc.)
  • Administrative Duties (filing, scheduling, notetaking, etc.)

Law Internships for High School Students (Continued)

Moreover, law internships provide opportunities for observation and mentorship. So, in addition to skill development, you’ll enjoy networking experiences and will gain references. Ideally, you’ll also conclude your internship with a better sense of if you want to continue to pursue a career in law or an adjacent field.

Finally, remember that law internship opportunities only increase during college. If you’re interested in a career in law, consider applying to colleges that have strong career service offerings and internship opportunities.