CS Freshman Summer internship salary

My computer science freshman son landed a summer internship position. I was very surprised with the salary they are offering. In my opinion, he is not technically sound enough. He only completed the first quarter, and now into the second quarter. His internship term is 10 weeks, and he will earn about $11K. I am afraid that the company finds that he is not up to the tasks, and gets very disappointed . Is $11K over 10 weeks for CS freshman intern who doesn’t have enough technical knowledge just about right?

Some internships bring in quite a bit more actually (welcome to the world of CS), so the money is not at question.

What you’re asking though is more important - will that particular internship be a net positive for your son? And it depends. Did your son go through any technical vetting like code tests as part of the interview process? If so, I think that you can rest assured that he is ready for that internship.

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You don’t know what they’re seeking. Perhaps they’re trying to get an early in so they can lock him up summer after summer until full-time. Perhaps, like many jobs, what they do isn’t necessarily reflective of academics and you’ll do their thing their way.

As long as he applied honestly (ie his resume and his words were legit), there’s no issue.

If it doesn’t work out, he’ll go elsewhere next summer.

CS pays exceptionally well. $1100 a week is exceptional. But maybe not for CS.

Most engineer seem to be $15-25 an hr. But starting salaries are less than for CS.

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Assuming your son was honest about his experience/coursework listed on his resume (which I assume is the case) he should be fine.


Thank you!! He had one or two interviews. He know C++、but he said he could not answer any technical questions, and he was very certain that he did not get this internship. So it was surprise that he was offered. But then we were worried if he was competently execute the tasks they will assign him.

Don’t worry. The company that offered this internship isn’t going to put him in charge of anything as a first year intern. He will be given instructions, and some explanation for a task to be completed, and often not left alone.

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That relieves me. I just felt that the salary he will receive is too high for interns who doesn’t know any technical knowledge. He is working as a math teacher at the local math tutoring company every Sunday just to cover the work-study obligation of the financial aid. We were happy that he earns $17 per hour, which is more than the campus jobs. But now he can cover more than work-study earning by the summer internship alone. He was willing to work for free as long as he gets the summer internship.

The company knows what they are looking for and they interviewed him (twice) according to their standards. So he should be fine.

BTW, what many companies are looking for is how the students approach hard problems. Even problems that they cannot answer. How they approach them (logical, methodical approach), how they think about them (talking out load to show they understand the problem at hand), and how they handle themselves (poise) matters.


The going rate for CS and engineering internships is crazy. But that’s what companies are paying to get young people in the door and excited about their company.

Congrats to your child!

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