"Authentic Work" is a core design principle at HTH in which students engage in academic work that matters to them and to the world outside of school. Furthermore, student internships play a key role in the academic curriculum at HTH. Students at all grade levels make connections with the outside world, and in the 11th and/or 12th grades, students are required to participate in the HTH Student Internship Program (“Internship”), which consists of interning with professional organizations (“Host Organizations”) in the community. Internships allow students the opportunity to apply their knowledge and skills in a professional setting.

Host Organizations are diverse, and they have included government agencies, laboratories, hospitals, law firms, nonprofits, financial institutions, and other entities operating in the community. In the course of the Internship, each student will participate on a substantial project that contributes to the Host Organization and provides an off-campus authentic, real-world experience for the student, as part of the educational program. Near the end of the Internship, each student will present his/her project and overall learning experience to a panel of Host Organization representative(s), other HTH student(s), and/or HTH staff member(s).

Internships for 11th and 12th grade students will generally be for a 4-5 week period, 5 days per week, approximately 6-8 hours per day, and 30 to 40 hours per week. The specific dates, duration, and schedule for the Internship will be arranged by the Host Organization and HTH teacher/coordinator, with input from the student where appropriate.

Internships are unpaid and provide students with practical experience and academic credit. Interning in a field of choice provides students with the opportunity to pursue their passions and helps guide their college and career choices after graduation. Students gain knowledge that integrates real-world learning experiences, career development, and public service, while Host Organizations benefit from the contributions of creative and innovative students. After building relationships, gaining experience, and learning to network, many students find ways to continue to pursue their passions and develop their future career paths.

Mentors are employees of the Host Organizations that are paired with students during the Internships. Mentors gain an opportunity to guide a high school student in discovering their passions and career interests. Students provide new ideas and viewpoints while energizing the Host Organization with their enthusiasm and desire to learn. Mentors and students work together to define and execute projects that benefit the Host Organization.

The Internship features:

Students receive academic credit for successfully completing their Internship and related course work with their HTH teacher.

Mentors communicate regularly with HTH teachers about the students’ progress, attendance, and project development.

HTH teachers maintain regular contact with the students, including site visits and other support.
The Internship is supported by classes taught at the HTH schools, during which students prepare for and reflect on their experiences.

In order to make the Internship meaningful, the expectation is for the mentor and student to develop a substantive project. It is important to develop a project proposal prior to or during the first two weeks of the Internship, to ensure that both the mentor and student have clear goals. During the Internship, students may participate on projects that include supporting a specific marketing event, product launch, website design, personnel outreach, client networking, software and hardware support, and public relations, including presentations in public forums and in the community.

HTH and the Host Organization are required to maintain general liability insurance or equivalent programs of self-insurance during any periods when students are on an Internship site. In the event of an accident or sudden illness, students and their parents/guardians understand and agree that any medical treatment will be provided at their expense (or that of their insurer) and that neither HTH and its affiliates or the Host Organization will be responsible or liable for costs and fees related to such medical treatment.

There may not be any monetary remuneration with respect to the student’s time spent during the Internship. Students are not employees of the Host Organization and shall have no entitlement to any form of compensation including, but not limited to wages, remuneration, Social Security benefits, retirement, or health insurance.

To determine if hosting an Internship is the right choice, potential mentors should ask themselves the following questions: Do you have a specific project or assignment that provides a quality professional learning opportunity for a high school student? Can you commit time to teach and guide a student? Can you benefit from the unique perspective and skills that a student would bring to your organization? If you answered yes to all of these questions, then you are ready to host an Internship!

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