Chicago Botanic Garden: College First Internship Program

Organization & Program Overview:
College First is a high-school internship program at the Chicago Botanic Garden. It is a paid internship for seven weeks during the summer and monthly meetings during the school year. A school bus provides transportation from various designated stops throughout Chicago to bring students to the Garden by 9 a.m. Monday through Friday. Students leave the Garden at 3 p.m. each day.

Website: College First Internship Program
Application: Sign Up & Apply

Who Can Participate?

  • Students who are currently sophomores or juniors and are enrolled in a Chicago Public School can participate.
  • Students should demonstrate an interest in science and nature as well as the ambition to pursue a college degree.
  • Students and parents must commit to the unpaid training, all seven weeks of the summer program, and the once-a-month school-year meetings.
  • Students are responsible for getting to and from the designated bus stops.
  • Students who are from a racial or ethnic background that is underrepresented in the field of science (African American, Latino, and Native American) and who would benefit the most from college and career support (low-income, first generation to attend college) are encouraged to apply.

Submission Materials:

  1. A completed application form.
  2. A copy of your second-quarter report card (January) OR the most recent one you have. Please do not submit progress reports. (Do not hold back on submitting your application because you are waiting for a report card. Just submit the most recent one you have to ensure the application is received by the deadline.)
  3. Program permission waiver, signed by you and your parent/guardian.
  4. Recommendation form, filled out by a science teacher or community leader (pastor, youth group leader, etc.) who knows you well. It cannot be filled out by someone related to you.

Program Schedule:
Paid internship: June 22 – August 7, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Unpaid orientation: June 13
School-year meetings: Once-a-month meetings (usually on school holidays or Saturdays) during the school year—schedule to be determined.

Open to DREAMers: Yes
Questions? Please email or call Beatriz Cañas at (847) 835-6871

Paid Internship Program