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FAQs for internships

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FAQs for internships

October 2022

What type of work will I be performing?

This very much depends on the needs of the office to which you are assigned, your educational background and interests. To make the best match, please indicate your specific interest in the cover letter / letter of interest. Interns can work on various projects related to protection, programmes, communication, media and many other fields. For more information please always refer to the specific internship advertisement.

When and where should I apply?

Internship vacancies are advertised on our main recruitment platform. Some regional and country offices also advertise internship opportunities on their dedicated websites. We encourage you to regularly check the respective country office’s website for possible openings. Browse UNHCR country websites.

Do interns receive financial support from UNHCR?

Interns who do not receive financial support from an outside party will receive an allowance to help cover the cost of food, local transportation and living expenses. Furthermore, UNHCR will reimburse interns engaged from a location outside the country of the duty station for return travel costs to/from the duty station by the most economical route available irrespective of the duration of the journey. 

However, if UNHCR has an agreement in place with a sponsoring institute (normally a university) that provides internship assignments to its students, different payment modalities apply.

Irrespective of the amount of allowance interns receive, be it from UNHCR or any other sponsor, interns (or their sponsoring entities) are expected to make their own arrangements for travel, visa and accommodation during the internship period.

What are the office hours?

All internships should take place in accordance with the working hours established by the UNHCR office where the internship is located. The internship is normally on a full-time basis, part-time internships are also allowed according to the needs of the work unit or office as well as the availability of the intern. Interns may telework within or outside of the country of duty station and they can also benefit from other available flexible work options such as compressed work schedule and flexible working hours. The exact working hours and flexible work options should be discussed and agreed upon between the intern and the supervisor.

I have applied to a specific vacancy/internship profile. Will I be notified?

Due to the large number of applicants, unfortunately, we are unable to notify unsuccessful candidates. Provided that all eligibility criteria continue to be met, we encourage candidates to apply to other openings relevant to their education and career aspirations.

I have completed my internship at UNHCR. What employment opportunities do I have?

An internship does not create any expectation or entitlement to employment with UNHCR at the conclusion of the internship. Internships are considered as work experience for the purposes of any subsequent application for employment with UNHCR in accordance with applicable guidelines. Following the internship, interns are allowed to apply to open positions for which they may qualify.