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Silicon Valley's High-Paid High School Interns

Companies such as Facebook recruit high schoolers to fill positions in their intern programs
Silicon Valley's High-Paid High School Interns
Courtesy Michael Sayman (2)

After Facebook recruited Michael Sayman last November, it didn’t mess around—it flew him out from Miami to meet Mark Zuckerberg. The chief executive talked to Sayman about 4 Snaps, the mobile game he built using Facebook’s development tools that has attracted more than 500,000 players. Sayman’s mom, Cristina, came with him, because he was still in high school. “When I got the e-mail saying—oh my God—Mark Zuckerberg wants to meet you, I had to make sure nobody was playing a prank on me,” the young coder says.

Sayman, now 17, started in June as a summer intern at Facebook’s Menlo Park (Calif.) headquarters just after graduating from high school and six months before he’s due to get his braces off. “I try to keep my mouth closed during meetings because I don’t want people to see them and not take me seriously,” he says. He’s staying in a suite in Facebook’s Mountain View intern housing with an older colleague. “They gave me the option of living with my mom, but my mom was like, ‘No, you have to learn to live on your own,’ ” he says.