How to find and land an internship with the UN

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (right) greets interns gathered inside the General Assembly Hall. Experts say candidates who successfully land U.N. internships are generally those who are team players, strong communicators, well organized and open to working with people of different nationalities. Photo by: Eskinder Debebe / United Nations

Most United Nations internships might be unpaid, but the gig remains extremely competitive, whether it’s with agencies like U.N. Women and United Nations Population Fund or at the U.N. Secretariat itself. The six-week to six-month programs offer unique, insider access to the workings of international diplomacy and aid. They also, in some cases, can eventually lead to full-time jobs with the U.N.

Devex tracked down recruitment and human resources officials at a variety of U.N. agencies to glean the strategies and tips you need to stand apart from a pool of competitive applicants.

About the author

  • Amy Lieberman

    Amy Lieberman is the U.N. Correspondent for Devex. She covers the United Nations and reports on global development and politics. Amy previously worked as a freelance reporter, covering the environment, human rights, immigration, and health across the U.S. and in more than 10 countries, including Colombia, Mexico, Nepal, and Cambodia. Her coverage has appeared in the Guardian, the Atlantic, Slate, and the Los Angeles Times. A native New Yorker, Amy received her master’s degree in politics and government from Columbia’s School of Journalism.