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Summer Teen Program | Overview

Due to the current hospital volunteer needs, the 2023 Summer Teen Program has been canceled. Please visit this page in February 2024 to learn about our 2024 Summer Teen Program.

Thank you for your interest in volunteering with Boston Children’s Hospital. The Summer Teen Program gives teenagers ages 17 and 18 the chance to volunteer in outpatient clinics and customer service roles at the Boston Children’s Hospital main campus. Please see below for information about the program's structure, requirements, and recruitment dates.

Volunteer commitment

  • two seven-hour shifts per week for six consecutive weeks
  • shifts will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays only


  • must be at least 17 years of age by March 1 of the program year
  • must have previous volunteer and/or work experience
  • submit an application and reference form by the given due dates
  • agree to complete the full volunteer commitment
  • attend an in-person interview
  • attend the mandatory volunteer training

Please note: All correspondence about application status and corresponding materials must be made by the candidate themselves.

Frequently asked questions

Are there opportunities for someone under 17 to volunteer?

Due to the serious nature of the hospital environment, the minimum age limit for the Summer Teen Program was adjusted from 16 in previous years to 17.

What characteristics do you look for in Summer Teen Program volunteers?

We find that those who are most successful in the volunteer role are reliable, communicative, and take initiative. Volunteers are expected to be caring, kind, observant, and willing to learn. We seek volunteers who are mature enough to handle and cope with the experience of seeing and playing with various children who have serious illnesses.

How many Summer Teen Program volunteers do you accept?

It depends on what the needs are throughout the hospital, and our spots are limited. We are anticipating taking less than 15 volunteers.

I know that I am going away for vacation, camp, or another activity next summer. Can I still apply for the program?

We understand that summer can be a busy time for all. However, we do ask candidates that know they are going away for part of the summer to wait and apply next summer.

Even though I am unable to make the Summer Teen Program commitment, I would still like to help in some way. Are there other ways for me to get involved?

Unfortunately, it is against hospital policy for teens to volunteer during the academic school year. Please see the Boston Children’s Hospital Trust's website to find opportunities for upcoming events and other ways to get involved.

I want to work in a specific clinic in the hospital. How do I ensure I am placed there?

Please feel free to make a note of your preferences within your volunteer application. We will do our best to accommodate requests, but all placements are based on the volunteer need. Summer Teen Program volunteers are placed in outpatient clinic/customer service roles only. Inpatient assignments are not available.

Are there opportunities at satellite locations (e.g., Peabody, Waltham, Martha Eliot)?

Participants will be able to volunteer at the Boston Children’s Hospital main campus at 300 Longwood Ave. only.

I know I am applying for the Summer Teen Program. What can I do now to prepare?
  • Start thinking about who your reference may be: A reference form is required for every volunteer application. A reference can be anyone in a professional capacity that is not a family member or friend (e.g., teacher, manager, etc.).
  • Create an email address: Most of our communication is done via email, so please be sure that you have an email address that you can check regularly.
  • Mark your calendars: Please see our recruitment dates section above. We will not be accepting any applications outside of these dates, so please be sure to apply during the given time frame.