High School Internship – Sherman Library and Gardens

High School Internship

Every summer Sherman Library & Gardens offers an intensive six-week full time paid internship opportunity for High School students who show an interest in study or career options in the field of horticulture and/or public gardens. Last year Madelyn Sparks, Senior at El Dorado High School, Placentia, and Clare Dowling, Senior at Newport Harbor High School, Newport Beach, joined our horticulture and education team for a varied program of practical garden work, summer camp, field trips and individual projects. 

‘I have absolutely loved working at the Sherman gardens for the summer! It has been such a great learning experience and has allowed me to explore this field further. I definitely plan to continue to volunteer at the gardens.’

                                                                                        – Madelyn Sparks, Summer 2021 High School Intern 

Amongst many other activities, Madelyn and Clare learned to re-pot and virus test orchids, clean out the koi pond, groom specific plants, mow and edge the lawn, handle young and enthusiastic summer campers and work within a small team. The intent of the internship is to show high school students that horticulture and botany are viable and rewarding college majors and career paths. Field trips to The Huntington, Tree of Life Nursery, the Summer Exotic Plant and Orchid Show and the Farm + Food Lab helped them to understand the context of their work at the gardens and the wider industry.

Previous Internship recipients have gone on to study Landscape Architecture at UC Berkeley and Biology at UCLA.

Thank you to the Sherman Library & Gardens Volunteer Association and Kay Azuma for funding this program.

Applications for this year’s High School Internship 
program are now closed.

How To Apply

Please email Catherine Dickinson, Education Director [email protected] with the following:

A pdf document including:

  1. Your Name, Grade in 2023/24, Name of School, Email Address, Phone number, Extracurricular Activities and Interests.
  2. When your school summer break begins and ends. Any other commitments that might need to be accommodated.
  3. An essay, 500 words or less, responding to these questions: 
  •  Why would you be a good fit for this internship? 

  • If you were given a 2.2 acre plot of land and a full team of gardeners to help you, what kind of garden would you create?

Application Due By: March 31, 2023 


Paid Internship
20-30 hours per week, Monday – Friday
June 26 – August 10, 2023
Number of Positions: 1
Qualifications: High school student entering 11th or 12th Grade w/ 2.5 or higher GPA

For more information contact:
Catherine Dickinson, Education Director 
[email protected]

Grace Soliman and Sarita Plata
High School Interns, Summer 2022

girl smiling in front of field of flowers

“During the internship you made me feel like part of your family of horticulturists.  I won’t stop trying to learn all that I can about plants.  Now that you’ve got me started there is no stopping me!” –  Amy-Grace Rananapratum, Intern 2020