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Early College STEM Schools (ECSS) is a dynamic workforce development partnership aimed at bridging the gap between college and career by equipping students to become the talent source of Chicago’s IT employers.  Through this program, nearly 2,000 students in five Chicago Public High Schools have the opportunity to earn college credit, train for IT industry certifications, and gain relevant work skills among Chicago’s leading employers through mentorships, classroom projects and internships.

Internship Fact Sheet
Internship Program Overview
Internship Host Overview


Internships offer students the chance to apply the knowledge they have gained in their high school and college coursework to a real work setting.  Through the relationships they build with other IT professionals as well the skills they share and gain, students will become practicing young IT professionals.

Program Benefits:

Shape new generation of diverse, highly-trained and versatile workers

  • Work with motivated students who care about their community
  • Influence technical skills for future success
  • Build a local IT talent pipeline for future recruiting needs
  • Leverage student innovation and fresh ideas
  • Utilize temporary employees for critical periods

Who are the Interns?

Beginning junior year, STEM school students who meet the proper course criteria will be eligible for internships provided by IT companies across Chicago, as well as other companies and businesses, including non-profits, which demonstrate the ability to support an intern in an IT-related placement.

Employer Expectations

Employers are expected to provide meaningful work experiences that enable students to showcase their skills (not copying or answering the phones).  They are also to provide supervision and mentorship for the students while giving weekly feedback to the school supervisor.  Employers will receive guidance on how to work with young people and recognition as a supporter of STEM schools and students.  Additionally, the internships allow employers an opportunity to showcase the best of their organization to the future talent pipeline.  This enables employers to provide dynamic young people with great promise a unique opportunity to build their skills and expand their life purviews. 

Become an Internship Host TODAY!

Become a Mentor

Early College STEM School students need you;

ECSS is looking for industry professionals in the Chicagoland area who are interested in supporting the professional development and career readiness of high school students.

The goal is to encourage the personal and professional growth of IT STEM students via knowledge transfer, skills development and exposure to the various fields related to IT.

This robust mentoring program is designed to help students build meaningful connections with adult professionals and learn employer-valued skills through individual or group mentoring activities.

Mentors can choose their time commitment:

  • Group activities throughout the school year (~3 hours/quarter)
  • 1:1 mentoring (~2 hours/month) with upperclassman, (1 hour on-site per month)

There are ongoing mentor orientation cycles throughout the year.

Become a Mentor Today!

Become a Program Partner

ECSS is making strides in educating and engaging young people in technology, preparing them for jobs of the future and building Chicago’s STEM workforce! Want to be a part of it? Sign up here.

 Previous Internship Host Partners:

Host Partners

  • There are currently no scheduled events.