OpenIGO | International Careers Development Network
UNESCO Internships

Internship Programs

UNESCO Internships

Unpaid Internships

The goal of the UNESCO internship program 2021-2022 is to contribute to students’ education, giving them the opportunity to work directly with governments and civil society on issues related to international cooperation in education, culture and the sciences. Interns will be supported by mentors from UNESCO’s regular staff and may take part in projects relevant to the institution.


In pursuit of its mission, the OpenIGO network has prepared a comprehensive eBook and support and guidance services, with the aim of highly increasing your chances of success in these competitive processes. These services include revising your UN internships application documents (curriculum vitae/resume and cover letter) and a mock interview, as per the United Nations model. We also offer a range of packages that combine the eBook with different services.


UN Internships – Products & Services

We have prepared a special offer for you!

UN Internships – PDF eBook

UNESCO Overview

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is a UN agency that seeks to build peace through international cooperation in education, culture and the sciences. Through partnerships with governments and civil society, UNESCO aims, among other goals, to increase access to quality education, strengthen freedom of speech and the press, encourage scientific progress, preserve and stimulate global cultural diversity, promote a culture of peace and non-violence and stimulate environmental and sustainable awareness. Besides its headquarters in Paris (France), the agency has 50 Field Offices and around 90 institutes and specialized centers around the world.

UNESCO’s main focus: To foster broader access to education, culture and the sciences in developing nations.

Themes addressed by UNESCO:

  • Education
  • Sciences and research
  • Culture
  • Communication and information
  • Environment and climate change
  • Violence prevention

Description of the UNESCO internship

What are the fields of study required for the UNESCO Internship?

  • Education
  • Cultural Studies
  • Natural Sciences
  • Communication and Information Studies
  • Social and Human Sciences
  • Law
  • Human Resources
  • Management Studies
  • International Relations

What are the tasks performed by the selected for the UNESCO Internship?
The activities performed vary according to the opening and the requirements of the different departments to which interns are allocated. However, generally speaking, the main duties are:

  • Support administrative and operational activities;
  • Carry out research and collect and analyze data on topics relevant to the agency’s activities;
  • Write and review reports and other types of documents;
  • Take part in training programs, meetings and events with staff members.

What is the duration of the UNESCO Internship?
The internship period ranges from at least 2 months to up to 6 months at most.

What is the weekly workload of the UNESCO Internship?
The internship programs are full-time. Interns shall therefore work between 35 and 40 hours per week.

Where are the locations of the UNESCO Internship?
Most openings are for the organization’s headquarters in Paris (France), but other opportunities may be available in its Field Offices around the world: Arab States, Africa, Americas and the Caribbean, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia.

When does the UNESCO internship start?
The initial date of the internship shall be coordinated between the intern and the organization.

Is there any feedback following the completion of the UNESCO Internship?
At the end of the internship, the supervisor is in charge of preparing an assessment report of the intern’s performance.

Subsequent employment:
Participation in the internship is not related to future employment with the agency. However, the UNESCO Internship experience will be a distinctive feature in your curriculum, which may facilitate your hiring by other organizations inside or outside the UN System.

UNESCO Internship Salary

The internship is unpaid.

UNESCO Internship Requirements

What is the education requirement of the UNESCO Internship Program?

  • Be enrolled in a graduate school program (Master’s or PhD), or;
  • Be enrolled in the last school year of an undergraduate school program (Bachelor’s level or equivalent), or;
  • Have graduated from an undergraduate or graduate course in the last 12 months.

What is the language requirement of the UNESCO Internship Program?
Fluency is required in one of the two official languages of UNESCO (English or French). Working knowledge of the other official language is an asset in the selection process and may be required for internships at the agency’s headquarters.

What is the age requirement of the UNESCO Internship Program?
Applicants must be at least 18 years old at the time of enrolment.

What is the nationality requirement of the UNESCO Internship Program?
Applicants must be citizens of a UNESCO member state.

What are the competencies required for the UNESCO Internship Program?
The main competencies required are: communication, teamwork, Computer skills and an awareness of the many facets of a multicultural world and a commitment to international public service are essential.

Other requirements of the UNESCO Internship Program
Most internships require no work experience. However, previous experiences may be an advantage in the selection process.

What are the restrictions of the UNESCO Internship Program?
An applicant may not be a child or sibling of any organization staff member.

UNESCO Internship - Application process

When to apply for the UNESCO Internship Program?
The application process varies according to the UNESCO office. The agency’s headquarters in Paris receives applications at any time for its database through the online recruitment system.

Potential candidates may be contacted within 6 months to fill openings related to their profile. If the applicant is not contacted within 6 months, it means that his or her application was not successful.

For internships in Field Offices, it is recommended to contact the desired office directly. Some offices require the submission of applications via e-mail. The list of Field Offices is available in the links section.

How to apply for the UNESCO Internship Program?
For openings at UNESCO headquarters in Paris, the application process is through the agency’s online recruitment system and comprises the following steps:

  • Access the online application form;
  • Fill in profile data (academic and professional background);
  • Submit the application. (The application is valid for 6 months)

What are the phases of the selection process for the UNESCO Internship?
The selection process may vary depending on the department or office to which the intern is applying, but generally comprises the following steps:

  1. Creating a profile and preparing an application;
  2. Submitting the application;
  3. Evaluation of the application;
  4. Competency-based interview;
  5. Selection notifications.

How is the UNESCO Internship interview?
Usually, only selected applicants will be contacted for the interview, which lasts about 30 minutes and may be done via Skype or phone. The main points covered in the interview vary according to the opening and department chosen. In general, however, the questions address subjective or behavioral aspects, such as your expectations about the job, your interests in the area of expertise you are applying for and your previous experiences.

What are the documents to submit for the UNESCO Internship Program?

  • CV/résumé;
  • Cover/Motivation Letter;
  • Two letters of recommendation;
  • Undergraduate or graduate degree (if concluded).

What is the evaluation criteria of the UNESCO Internship Program?
You will be evaluated regarding your previous experience, skills and competences, and educational background.

UNESCO Internship - Costs

The organization offers no financial aid to cover costs related to preparing for or doing the internship. However, you may request financial aid from a sponsoring institution, for example, a university and/or government agency in your country.

You or your sponsoring institution will be responsible for the costs and arrangements of obtaining the visa (if needed to do the internship).

You or your sponsoring institution will be responsible for the costs of enrolling in a valid global medical insurance plan.

Also required is a medical certificate of good health. UNESCO will only provide limited insurance coverage up to USD 30,000 against risk of illness, disability, or death during the internship period.

You or your sponsoring institution will be responsible for accommodation expenses during the internship period.

You or your sponsoring institution will be responsible for the costs and arrangements of the trip to the workplace to which you have been assigned.

Current Internship Openings

Other organizations

By continuing to browse this site, you agree to our use of cookies. Read our privacy policy

I understand

Get updates and tips about the World Bank Internships!

Receive first-hand news and tips on the WB Internship, as well as exclusive offers from our products & services!