Working For The UN As An Expat – What Are Your Options

Working For The UN As An Expat – that will be the topic of today’s article.

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Have you ever thought of working for the United Nations but you keep getting disapproved? Of course, it might require a daunting process! But if you’ve ever thought it’s impossible, that may sound wrong. Linda Starodub, who retired from 30 plus years in the UN system, disclosed this fact, with possibilities.

According to her, there are two basic strata of jobs in the United Nation. The first one is the GS, known as the General Service. And the second one is P, known as professional. Besides, each UN organization has its own practices regarding recruitment into these two categories. So, are you ready to work for the UN?

Working For The UN As An Expat

If that sounds like a yes, you’ve come to the right platform to understand how it works.  As a matter of fact, there are many reasons why people would love to work for the UN. From our insight and analysis, we discovered that a considerable 58% of all expats move abroad because of career aspects. And this is more specifically the reasons why the UN accepts people from different part of the world.

However, once you’ve gained a working experience abroad, or have the required skills, it will open you many doors. Working for the UN will develop different skills like foreign languages, communication skills, social, as well as independence and discipline. Meanwhile, prospective employers will value the experience.

Today, we have compiled this article to walk you through the jobs available for expats in the UN. Not only is that, but you’ll understand the countries and the type of jobs expats can apply to while still working for the United Nations. Friends, let’s quickly explain the best options and the job process in UN.

Requirements to Get the United Nations Jobs

Before we proceed to explaining the type of jobs available for expats, it would be better to give you an edge to the requirements it takes to get a UN jobs today.  Though rarely communicated in a clear way, there are many opportunities available for expats looking to start their United Nations Career.

Moreover, the UN Internship Programme and the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) Programme are some of the ways to start a UN career. On the flip side, the Junior Professional Officer (JPO) Programme and the Young Professionals Programme are specific programmes that are suited for UN Job seekers. Without further ado, below are the requirements to get a UN job as an expat.

  • You must have an advanced university degree for a career with the UN
  • Expats must have an excellent command of either English or French, since they are the common working languages in the job role
  • You must have a basic knowledge of an additional language (not requested for most jobs)
  • As a UN job seeker, always know that previous experience with track record is essential
  • You can apply for different job category according to your work experience level in UN

Some of the specific programs geared towards young professionals looking for a job include the following.

  • The United Nations Internship Programme
  • The United Nations Volunteers Programme (UNV)
  • The Junior Professional Officer Programme (JPO)
  • The Young Professionals Programme (YPP)

The United Nations Internship Programme

Working For The UN As An Expat

Out of the entire UN programme offered for job seekers, this happens to be the option that demands the lowest entry requirements for aspiring job seekers or candidates. With over 4,000 interns in the New York headquarters alone, the number of UN interns has skyrocketed in the past few years.

On the other hand, one of the biggest drawbacks is remuneration. And this is because; there’s none and not even travel expenses are covered. Fortunately, there’s a large number of interns that want to change their role and upgrade to Pay Your Interns initiative in Geneva. Moreover, there are certain national internship programs of the United Nations that’s backed by National governments.

The United Nations Volunteers Programme

Working For The UN As An Expat

The United Nations Volunteers Programme is the second entry opportunity for expats. This program is currently active in 86 countries, and more than 7,700 UN Volunteers are mobilized every year, both nationally, and internationally to work in development assistance projects, and in humanitarian operations. Meanwhile, the idea behind this program is the transfer of your knowledge to gain more.

In addition, common assignments given to expats job seekers could last twelve months or longer, while the short-term assignments normally cover a period of three months or less. However, volunteers have to be older than 25 to receive support through a settling-in-grant, a monthly volunteer living allowance.

The Junior Professional Officer Programme (JPO)

The Junior Professional Officer programme (JPO) is another opportunity for expatriate to enter the United Nations system. However, it is far more competitive compared to the Volunteer programme. Here, the programme is sponsored by individual’s respective national government. This means you can only apply if your government currently offers a certain JPO position for the United Nations.

Furthermore, it may be younger than 32, and the requirements normally stipulate a Master’s degree (or equivalent) in a development-related discipline. Sometimes, you might even be required to have paid working experience in a relevant field, preferably in a developing country, written and spoken proficiency in at least two languages, and other criteria.

The Young Professional Programme

The last programme of getting into the United Nations job is the Young Professional Programme. This is simply a recruitment initiative for young professionals to start a career as an international civil servant with the United Nations Secretariat. In fact, the normal procedure to this requires an entrance examination that is held once years, as well as the professional development programs once the successful candidates start their careers with the United Nations.

Similar to the programme mentioned above (JPO), applicants or job seekers here have to be fewer than 32. Not only is that, but they must hold at least a first-level university degree relevant to one of the exam areas, and must be fluent in either English or French language.

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