The ASPIRE program at APL is a unique opportunity for high school juniors and seniors to experience and explore STEM careers before committing to an area of study in college. During the intensive summer session and the longer academic-year session, ASPIRE interns are paired with APL staff mentors to complete projects, solve problems, and learn and apply crucial technical and interpersonal skills in a hands-on, professional environment. During their internship, students also have access to many of APL’s considerable technical and professional resources.

The ideal ASPIRE intern is a student who is successful in science, mathematics, and programming, in either grade-level or Advanced Placement (AP) courses. The ideal student is also curious, dedicated, ambitious, and ready to explore every facet of a STEM career. ASPIRE students must be able to work independently, communicate with APL staff members and mentors, persist when faced with challenges, and continually think outside of the box. ASPIRE students must also meet certain eligibility requirements, including maintaining a 3.0 GPA and holding U.S. citizenship. A complete list of requirements is provided below.

If you’re ready to explore this unique APL experience and you meet our minimum requirements, please read the application instructions below and get ready to join us for the STEM experience of a lifetime.

The ASPIRE program is competitive. Applying does not guarantee acceptance.

Eligibility Requirements

  • High school junior or senior during program participation. Students applying to the summer program should be going into their junior or senior year. Students must be at least 15 years old.
  • U.S. citizenship (green card holders are not eligible)
  • Minimum unweighted GPA of 3.0
  • Grade of B or better in core STEM subjects
  • Reliable transportation to APL throughout the program
  • No criminal record

Students must be committed to the program and its time requirements.

ASPIRE Areas of Placement

APL places the majority of students in computer science and engineering areas, including electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, physics, cybersecurity, and applied mathematics. There are very limited placements in chemistry, biology, biomedical engineering, and neuroscience.