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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

UNESCO Young Professionals Program

December 2, 2010


UNESCO recently announced that it has opened the call for applications to the Young Professionals Program for 2011. The main objectives of the Program are:

  • To improve the geographical distribution of staff within the UNESCO Secretariat
  • Contribute to the rejuvenation of its staff members and increase the representation of professional women
  • Ensure harmonization and efficiency in the administrative services of the UNESCO Secretariat

The U.S. National Commissions for UNESCO will select and submit up to 12 qualified candidates which meet the following criteria:

  • Candidates must be a U.S. citizen
  • Candidates must be no more than thirty (30) years of age as of December 31, 2011
  • Hold an advanced university degree, preferably with a major or specialization in one of the following areas:
    • Education – Education Sciences, Economics of Education, Education, Policy and Management, Total Quality, Management in Education
    • Natural Sciences – Geology and/or Geophysics; possibly with remote sensing; GIS; Mathematics and/or Physics
    • Social and Human Sciences – Ethics of Science and Technology
    • Culture – Anthropology; Ethnology; Sociology; Political Sciences (with specialization in International Relations)
    • Communication and Information – Communication and Information sciences
    • Financial Management – Finance and/or Accounting
    • Administration – Computer Science, Information Systems or related field (knowledge of Project Management and SAP would be an advantage); Human Resources Management, Business Administration
  • Excellent knowledge of English or French. Knowledge of both working languages is an asset.

Beside the above criteria, the selection will be based on the three notions of excellence, achievement and commitment to UNESCO’s mandate. A relevant first professional experience can be an asset, but is not an essential requirement.

Those interested must fill out an application, which can be downloaded here, and return their completed application with supporting documents to the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO no later than 5 p.m., Monday, January 17, 2011. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Completed applications will undergo a thorough review by a subcommittee of the U.S. National Commission with finalists chosen no later than February 15, 2011. The applications of the chosen finalists will be forwarded on to the UNESCO Secretariat in Paris for the next stage in the selection process.

After a thorough assessment of the applications received by the Secretariat in Paris, the Bureau of Human Resources Management with invite a group of preselected candidates for interviews and language examinations at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris.

The selected candidates will be recruited with a one-year contract at the P-1 level. During the first 12 months of employment within a Programme Sector, a Field Office or an Administrative Service of UNESCO, the Young Professionals will be given the opportunity to expand their knowledge of UNESCO and the UN System, and to acquire the relevant skills related to UNESCO’s fields of competence and its administration.

The renewal of a Young Professional’s contract will depend on the careful evaluation of their performance during a probationary period lasting the first 9 months of employment. Those who meet the required standards will be offered a subsequent extension of appointment, becoming regular UNESCO staff members.

For more information on the Young Professionals Program, please visit the UNESCO YPP website.

Please click here to download the 2011 Application for the Young Professionals Program.

Completed applications may be scanned and emailed to Alternatively, they may be mailed to our office at:

U.S. Department of State
U.S. National Commission for UNESCO
2121 Virginia Avenue, NW
Suite 6200
Washington, D.C. 20037

Please note that if mailed, applications must be received by the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO by January 17, 2011. Ongoing delays of postal mail continue due to security screenings, and mail sent to this office may be significantly delayed. Applications received after the deadline date of January 17, even if postmarked prior to the deadline, will not be considered. Therefore it is requested that all applicants email their completed applications with supporting documents by the deadline.

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