• CiS Interns Poster Session at AGU 2015
  • CiS Interns during New Intern Orientation
  • Teaching about fossils in the Piazza
  • CiS Group Photo with TRex
  • CiS Interns in the Lab
  • Interns conduct a transect at Ocean Beach to monitor sand crabs

The Careers in Science (CiS) Intern Program is a multi-year, year-round science internship and youth development program for young people from groups typically underrepresented in the sciences.

About Careers in Science

Created in 1996, the Careers in Science (CiS) Intern Program provides San Francisco youth from communities traditionally underrepresented in STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) fields with opportunities to immerse themselves in the sciences. Interns develop life and job skills, receive college and career mentorship, and learn science and sustainability concepts in an authentic, paid work environment. CiS provides hands-on science and youth development experiences at the Academy and outdoors while also exposing interns to professional role models and mentors who are leaders in their disciplines.

CiS strives to increase the diversity of the scientific community and change stereotypes surrounding science. As such, the program’s primary target is youth who have an interest and spark in science, who are motivated and able to fulfill the expected time commitment, and for whom the program would provide the guidance and support that would make a critical difference in pursuing a higher education degree and career in a STEM field. Program alumni have earned degrees in numerous STEM fields, including: Biology, Environmental Science, Engineering, Geology, and Public Health.

The Experience
If you share a curiosity for the natural world, from plants to planets, worms to snakes, and everything in between, you should consider applying for a Careers in Science internship. Interns primarily work at our amazing facility in Golden Gate Park and occasionally attend off-site events and field trips. Primary intern activities include:

  • Learning about science at trainings, lectures, workshops, and conferences
  • Teaching science to the Academy's audiences
  • Conducting scientific work during field studies with Academy scientists


To be eligible for the Careers in Science Intern Program, applicants must:

  • Be a San Francisco resident who attends an SFUSD school (private school students will be considered on a case-by-case basis)
  • Be a 9th or 10th grader and enrolled full-time
  • Be able to obtain a valid work permit (US citizens and others authorized to work in the US)
  • Commit to all attendance requirements of the program on a year-round, multi-year basis, including afterschool, weekend, and summer work
  • Be able to commute to the Academy in Golden Gate Park for work shifts
  • Demonstrate interest in and enthusiasm for learning about science, teaching science to diverse audiences, and conducting science

How to Apply

Recruitment for the Careers in Science program happens once a year in early spring. Applications are released annually in February, with an early April deadline. Applicants go through a series of interviews to ensure a good fit and commitment to the program. Sign up for our Youth Programs mailing list to stay informed about all teen opportunities, including when program applications open.

The California Academy of Sciences is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We are committed to ensuring that all employees and applicants receive equal consideration and treatment, regardless of race, color, creed, gender (including gender identity or gender expression), religion, marital or domestic partner status, age, national origin or ancestry, physical, mental or medical disability, sex, sexual orientation, citizenship, military service status, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by state or federal law or local ordinance.


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Impacts and Outcomes

In 2016, we surveyed alumni from the past 20 years of the program. Our goal was to measure the impacts of the program. Here’s what we found.

Careers in Science (CiS) Sponsors

We Thank Our Donors

The Careers in Science program is generously supported by an anonymous donor, Barbara Bakar; Caroline H. Damsky; Genentech, Inc.; Hearst Endowed Fund for Science Education; Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation; The Kimball Foundation; Angela Nomellini and Kenneth Olivier; Quest Foundation; San Francisco Department of Children, Youth & Their Families; The Sato Foundation; Jane and Bernard Von Bothmer; and Wells Fargo Foundation.

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