Teen Opportunities

Teen Opportunities

The Adler’s Teen Programs focus on providing technical and professional skills, mentorship, and a welcoming learning environment for Chicago high school students of all backgrounds, interests, and abilities. We offer internships, workshops, after-school programs, and more. Whether you’re building a website, programming a robot, blogging about current space science, or facilitating a workshop for other teens, you’ll make an impact here!

Want to stay up to date about our teen programs? Sign up for our email list!


The Adler Planetarium is grateful to the Bank of America Charitable Foundation, the Barker Welfare Foundation, Baxter, The Dover Foundation, Hive Chicago Fund for Connected Learning at The Chicago Community Trust, The Leo S. Guthman Fund, the Pritzker Foundation, S&C Electric Company Foundation, The Siragusa Foundation, and Wells Fargo for supporting teen opportunities.

What's Going On?

Join the Adler Planetarium’s youth programs team after school every Wednesday beginning September 20, 2017 at the Doane Observatory from 4 pm to 7 pm during the school year! Hang out with us, meet new friends, and learn some new skills in science, engineering, and digital media. Design, model, and print objects with our 3D printers. Build and hack technology with Arduino, Makey Makey, or Raspberry Pi. We have laptops and tablets for you to explore these exciting tools, work on projects, or finish homework!

Internships & Volunteering

Are you a high school student and at least 16 years old? If so, you are eligible to join our volunteer team! Volunteers work in almost every area of the Adler, from helping visitors learn more about space to doing behind-the-scenes work. Volunteer hours can also count towards service learning hours.

Opportunities Include:

  • Do Science Research
  • Teach guests about Science, Technology, & Space
  • Build and send experiments to space
  • Be an Adler Teen Leader

What's Coming Up?

Adler Youth Voices

This spring, as part of the Adler Youth Voice Project, work with professional writers, editors, and museum staff on adding teen voices to the Adler Planetarium and its national audience. Along the way, you’ll learn about science communication, narrative development, and interactive writing. Applications are due Saturday, March 3.

To learn more or apply, check out our online flyer. Here are some basic program details:

  • Program dates are 4/3, 4/10, 4/17/, 5/1, 5/8 from 4:00-7:00 pm and 4/28 from 12:00-4:00 pm.
  • Participants are eligible to receive a stipend and transit passes

Summer High School Internships

Looking for a summer job that will be challenging, fun, and eye-opening? The Adler’s Teen Internship Program places current high school students in professional museum roles, from facilitating fun science experiences for visitors to engineering solutions for underwater meteorite recovery! Full information is available on our online flyer, but here are the basics:

  • 20 interns in 5-6 different job roles around the museum
  • $12/hour, 25-hours/week, Monday-Friday from June 25-August 17
  • Museum work experience and professional development

Applicants must submit a resume and a cover letter online by Monday, March 19. Instructions on how to write these documents and how to apply are available here.

Astro-Science Workshop (ASW)

ASW is a fun, intensive, program about space exploration designed for high school students in the Chicago area. ASW began more than 50 years ago during the space race and Apollo program and counts numerous scientists, engineers, business leaders and a former NASA
astronaut as alumni. ASW encourages participants to consider pursuing careers in
science by offering the unique opportunity to work with astronomers, engineers, and educators at the Adler Planetarium. This year’s program will focus on hands-on opportunities related to telescope observing, light pollution, and high-altitude ballooning.

You can find more information or apply here. Completed applications are due Tuesday, May 1.

  • Dates: Monday-Friday, July 9-27, 2018
  • Times: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
  • Cost: FREE (Note: participants will need to bring lunch each day and provide their own transportation to/from the program)
  • College scholarships will be awarded to two qualifying ASW participants

Citizen Science Ambassadors

As a Citizen Science Ambassador, you’ll learn the basics of the scientific inquiry process, data analysis, and science communication. You’ll apply these skills to creating mini-research projects using data from Zooniverse online citizen science projects and share your work through blog posts and presentations. This is an After School Matters program.

  • Tuesday-Friday afternoons for six weeks (July-August), two exact dates are to be determined
  • Participants will be eligible to earn a stipend

Summer applications are not yet open; apply in mid-March online at After School Matters.