Wanted: High School Students Interested in Technology

Part of the University of New Hampshire InterOperability Lab’s (UNH-IOL) mission is to attract students to, and educate them for, future employment in cutting-edge technologies. We believe that this process should start early—before students even enter college. Each summer the UNH-IOL recruits bright, ambitious high school students entering their senior year for a seven week paid internship at our state-of-the-art networking facility.

Interns are paired up and placed in a consortium (a group of companies who come together to test and mutually solve interoperability problems in a specific technology) that suits their interests, and are given a project that they will work on for the duration of the program. Students receive training specific to their project and work alongside our employees to learn about their technology and observe our technicians as they do their daily testing. Parents, family and friends are invited to an award ceremony on the final day of the program where they learn about the interns’ accomplishments and watch the interns present their projects.

In an effort to cultivate strong communication skills, the program is also writing intensive. Students are required to submit write-ups at the end of each week, after each site visit, and at the conclusion of the program. Write-ups are evaluated and returned with constructive feedback in order to help each student improve their writing skills.

The program includes weekly site visits to local industry organizations. Last year’s interns visited Verizon, Texas Instruments, ca, Liberty Mutual, Enterasys, the Portsmouth WiFi Project and QA Café. These visits allow them to ask questions about the industry, network with industry professionals, and see how different companies and jobs vary in both technical specialties and in working culture.

The 2013 program will take place from July 8 through August 23. Students are expected to work forty hours per week (9:00 am – 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday) during this time. The application will be made available at our website on March 18, and will remain open for applicants until April 26. Prospective interns must complete an application and essay, and submit two letters of recommendation and an official transcript. Resumé and other additional materials are optional. We train each intern and do not expect previous experience. Our hope is to employ interns with intense interest and strong motivation to learn. All interviews will take place during the month of May; prospective interns can expect to hear back by June 7.

The summer internship program provides value that is seldom available to high school students. It allows students to discover and pinpoint their interests, gain professional experience, network with professionals in the industry, and complete a project that they can be proud of. In addition to adding substance to their resumés, students gain a background in networking technologies that will help them succeed as they move toward college. For students planning to attend UNH, they have the added benefit of a nearly-guaranteed job during their college years.

For more information, and to apply for the internship, visit our website.

Please write to internship@iol.unh.edu with any questions, comments or concerns.

Amy Davies, Academic Coordinator