NSA offers NSA High School Internships, Work Study, and a Scholarship

A NSA high school internship can offer you the opportunity to get more information about NSA and deepen your knowledge in your career field. Also, you will receive a salary or scholarship money. There are many opportunities available, including scholarships, internships, and co-op programs. Based on your educational level and area of interest, you can search for the right opportunity. NSA offers a variety of paid programs to high school, college, and graduate students in many fields.


Applications for NSA Student Programs are accepted in both the spring and autumn. Check the specific program you are interested in for information about the program and their deadlines. To learn more about applicants who have already submitted an application, visit the NSA Student Portal.

Remember that NSA selects its majority of high school program applicants up to a year ahead. NSA internship applications are typically accepted in September and October each year. This means that your application must be submitted at least nine months prior to the start of your program. Plan ahead!


nsa high school internship

Benefits of a NSA high school internship

With a NSA high school internship, you can find out more about the careers that contribute to national safety from the dedicated men and women who work for the U.S. Intelligence Community. Even if you haven’t started college yet, it is never too late to think about your career and get paid experience in it. You can learn more about NSA high school internships on the NSA high school internship website page.

High School Work Study at NSA

High school juniors living within commuting range of an NSA facility are invited to apply for the National Security Agency’s High School Work Study Program which takes place during your high school senior year. High school students can apply for The Stokes Educational Scholarship Program, or an internship in STEM or foreign language. To be considered for this part-time, paid job NSA high school internship, high school juniors must submit their application by October 31 to work at one of these locations: NSA headquarters in Fort Meade, Md.Denver, Colo.Fort Gordon, Ga., or San Antonio, Texas. During your high school senior year, at the NSA high school internship you will be working a minimum of 20 hours per week in one of the following positions:

  • Business
  • Computers

Students can also study these subjects at Fort Meade:

  • Engineering
  • Manufacturing
  • Construction
  • Graphic arts
  • Russian Language or Chinese Language

A minimum of two courses must be taken in the field you are interested in and a minimum GPA (unweighted) of 2.5. The student must be 16 by the end of their junior year in high school to participate in the program.

According to the NSA student programs page, NSA High School Work Study (HSWS) is a highly competitive program and it is for students in high school who want to work as part of a school-sponsored program. Part-time employment is available to students from September through August of their senior years. There are positions available depending on the requirements of each site. Make sure you apply for the job that is available at your local site. The following positions are available to students:

Administrative and Technical Students:

Office Assistant

  • Students enrolled in business courses (Microsoft Office Suite and Accounting, Business Management, Web Page Design, etc.) They will need to be able to type, file, maintain records and answer phones.

Computer Aide

  • Students enrolled in computer- or Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), courses that are computer- and Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (Computer Science and Java Visual Basics, Programming, etc. They will need to operate and maintain data processing equipment. This equipment is often among the most advanced on the market.

Vocational students:

Model Shop

  • Students who are mechanically proficient and willing to learn from experts in one or more of these related trades: machining, precision sheetmetal, welding, woodworking, 3D printers, graphic design, sewing, painting, and so on. This course is for high school students enrolled in Printing/Graphic Arts and Manufacturing classes at technical high schools.


  • Students who are self-motivated and have good interpersonal, teaming, and industrial skills. They also need basic computer skills (e.g. web browsers, Microsoft Office Suite, e-mail). Students will be required to assist with operating and maintaining printing, binding, and packaging equipment; operating computer graphics software across various computer platforms/experience in Adobe Creative Suite; and operating industrial/production equipment, machinery, and tools such as die cutters, laminators, air compressors, and soldering equipment. This job requires the ability to coordinate a variety of tasks in order to produce electronic assemblies, electronic media, and printed products. This course is for high school students enrolled in Graphic Arts/Printing at a technical highschool.

For Students interested in installation & logistics

  • Mechanically-inclined students are encouraged to apply. They will need to help with the installation and maintenance of building architectural systems. This includes repairing, altering, and constructing replacement items made from wood, plastic, and metal. You can apply surface finishing treatments like painting or staining. Students can also do sanitization and declassification. You can use common tools such as hammermills or pulverizers to clean, declassify, or destroy the material. Donate, recycle, reutilize, or resell the material. This program is for high school students enrolled in Construction, Engineering, Project Management, or Manufacturing at a technical high school.

Language students:


  • Students who are currently enrolled at advanced Chinese courses (Chinese 5, or higher) Students will need to be proficient in Chinese to complete daily tasks. Students must be able to communicate in Chinese and have excellent listening, reading and writing skills. Students should also be recommended by their school’s Chinese language teachers.


  • Students who are currently enrolled at advanced Russian courses (Russian 4, or higher) Students will need to be proficient in Russian to complete daily tasks. Students must be able to communicate in Russian and have excellent listening, reading, and writing skills. Students should also be recommended by their school’s Russian language teachers.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Must be a junior at a local high school
  • You must be at least 16 years of age by the end of your junior year in high school
  • You must be a citizen of the United States
  • Preferred unweighted 2.5 GPA
  • At least two courses related to the desired position must be completed
  • Have reliable transportation
  • Minimum 4 hours per Day / 5 Days a Week (Monday-Friday).

Forms Required

Gifted and Talented (G&T) NSA High School Internship Programs

G&T internships (which include G&T STEM and the G&T language program) are designed to introduce high-achieving high school seniors to the NSA/CSS missions. This program offers valuable work experience in STEM. The program will provide students with meaningful and interesting opportunities to use and improve their technical skills. They will be able to work with mentors and colleagues on projects that have a real impact on our country. The students will be assigned to an office that is related to their interests and abilities. They will also get unique tours of the facility. Applications for this program are accepted prior to October 31st. You can apply for these programs at the NSA careers page. Select Job Search/Apply Online to search for the Gifted and Talented Program. Only high school seniors are eligible to apply for the National Security Agency’s Gifted and Talented Language Program (NSA). 

In both the G&T Stem program and this G&T Language program, you’ll be working full-time during 10-12 weeks of summer after high school graduation. These internships are open until Nov 15. Participants in these programs will not only gain valuable work experience but also have the opportunity to receive mentorship and training opportunities. Once their internship is completed, they may be eligible for a continuation at NSA.

According to the NSA programs page, in either program, you’ll work full-time for 10-12 weeks during the summer following high school graduation. Students must be 16 years of age to begin the program and have at least 1200 on the SAT or 25 on the ACT. GPA of 3.5 (unweighted) or above is preferred. The deadline to apply for either of these internships is Nov. 15.


G&T STEM is a NSA high school internship available to high school seniors who have completed at least one AP/IB Physics or AP/IB Calculus course, and either a computer science or engineering course by their senior year.

G&T language program NSA high school internship

According to the NSA high school programs page, there is also the G&T language program which is a NSA high school internship that was recently launched for high school seniors who are taking AP language and are proficient in Chinese, Russian, Korean, Farsi, Farsi, or Arabic. However, one of their other NSA high school programs page, they then say this program is for high school students with a demonstrated aptitude for Russian or Chinese language, so it seems like they would rather prefer you to be fluent in Russian or Chinese. This program offers a great opportunity to gain valuable experience with foreign languages. After high school graduation, this 12-week paid internship is offered at NSA Washington in Fort Meade (Maryland). The program runs from mid-May to mid-August after high school graduation.


  • You must be a citizen of the United States
  • You must be eligible for a security clearance
  • You must be a senior in high school and have successfully completed an AP course in one of the qualified language (or proctored exam results proving equivalent) before the end of your senior year.
  • GPA unweighted of 3.5 or more
  • At least 16 years old at the time of hiring
  • After graduation, plan to study language.

Submit your application with

  • Resume
  • Transcript
  • Two letters of recommendation. One must come from a teacher of language.

For more information on NSA opportunities, visit NSA’s student Programs Page.

Stokes Educational Scholarship Program

The Stokes Scholarship will be open to high-performing high school seniors (especially minorities) who intend to pursue degrees or certificates in Computer Science and Computer/Electronic Engineering. While you are enrolled full-time, you’ll be eligible for up to $30K in tuition and fees assistance. You’ll also earn a year-round salary during your time in the Stokes Program. What’s even better is that once you graduate college you’ll have a job at NSA waiting for you. After graduation, you’ll be required to work for the agency at least one and a half times your time of study upon graduation.

According to the NSA student programs page, The Stokes Educational Scholarship Program offers a great opportunity to gain valuable work experience while you are enrolled in college and earning your degree. The Stokes Program is available to high school seniors, especially minority students who plan to major in computer science or computer/electrical engineering, or Chinese or Russian language.

The Stokes Program allows you to attend college full-time and then work in the summer at NSA’s HQ in Fort Meade, Maryland for a minimum of 12 weeks in areas that are related to your study program. You’ll gain real-world experience and a year-round salary. Even better, once you have graduated college, there will not be any job searching hassle. A position in your chosen area of study at NSA is waiting for you. Below are some fields that the NSA stokes scholarship offers jobs in:

Computer Science

Computer scientists at the NSA work in areas like applications programming, security and graphics and design and implementation software that includes real-time systems, database management systems, and distributed processing systems.

Computer/Electrical Engineering

These areas offer a wide range of challenges and experience, from applied research and design, development, testing, and testing, to project management, and system analysis. Projects that are focused on communication systems, computer security, networking, microprocessor apps, software engineering, optics, and other related areas will be undertaken.

Foreign Language

Students who speak Chinese or Russian are eligible to apply for the NSA. By enrolling in the Stokes Educational Scholarship Program you agree to work for NSA for at least 1.5 times the length for which you studied upon graduation.


  • Annual tuition and mandatory fees of up to $30,000
  • College students can earn a year-round salary
  • If the distance between NSA school and NSA exceeds 75 miles, housing and travel benefits are available during summer employment
  • Paid time off/health & life insurance/federal retirement plan

Minimum Qualifications

  • You must be a U.S. Citizen.
  • To be granted security clearance, you must be eligible.
  • Candidates should have a minimum of a 3.0 unweighted grade point average on a scale of 4.0.
  • At the time you apply, you must be a senior in high school.
  • You must be majoring or aspiring to major in Computer Science, Computer/Electrical Engineering, Chinese or Russian Language.
  • Program requirements have been changed due to the COVID-19 epidemic. High school transcripts of technical majors will not be accepted. They will need to show a minimum of one physics course and a combination (minimum of 2) of engineering, computer science or programming. A minimum of three years’ coursework in a foreign language must be included on the transcripts of language majors.
  • Your online application must be submitted during the application period.

The following requirements are required for applicants to the Stokes Educational Scholarship:

  • Resume
  • One-page Essay: “Why do I want a career with NSA?”
  • GPA minimum 3.0 on 4.0 scale (unweighted).
  • Official transcripts from high school and college (for consideration).
  • Two letters of recommendation must be submitted (both from technical or language course teachers who can attest to your academic ability)

Other resources

You can check out my post on online internships for high school students.

You can check out my post on art internships for high school students.

You can check out my post on high school economics internships.

You can also check out my post on Stanford high school internships.

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