Job Opening

Posting Title: Legal Intern, I (Temporary Job Opening)
Department/Office: Office of Legal Affairs
Duty Station: NEW YORK
Posting Period: 08 March 2017 - 21 April 2017
Job Opening Number: 17-Legal Affairs-OLA-75820-J-New York (A)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.

Special Notice


• Please create and complete a personal history profile (PHP) and a cover letter in the UN e-Recruitment platform, Inspira at In your PHP, please indicate if you are proficient in the English language. PLEASE NOTE THAT INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS WILL NOT BE REVIEWED.

• It is imperative that the cover letter includes the following details:

(1) Title of the degree currently being pursued and the specific subjects taken;

(2) Expected graduation date from the degree programme or graduation date if graduated within the past year ;

(3) The applicant's objectives for undertaking an internship with the Office of Legal Affairs (OLA) and how it fits within his/her education/career plan;

(4) Three (3) divisions of interest for internship from among the six Divisions in the Office of Legal Affairs (in order of preference) with #1 being the most preferred. The six divisions of OLA are: the Office of the Under-Secretary-General (OUSG), the Office of the Legal Counsel (OLC), the General Legal Division (GLD), the Codification Division (COD), the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea (DOALOS), and the Treaty Section (TS).

(5) An explanation why the applicant is suitable for the specific Division(s);

(6) The applicant's availability for the internship from 3 April - 31 August 2017.

Important Note:

• The duration of an OLA internship is a minimum of two (2) months to a maximum of six (6) months depending upon the particular needs of the programme.

• OLA internships are not paid. Travel costs, travel arrangements (including visas), and living accommodations are the responsibility of the intern or their sponsoring institution.

• OLA interns are not eligible to apply for, or be appointed to, any position in the professional or above categories, within the UN Secretariat for a period of six (6) months following the end of their internship. Any employment with the UN at that point in time shall be subject to established recruitment and selection procedures.

• Internship positions are full-time. For more information on the terms and conditions of the UN internship programme, please visit the UN internet site at: For details on OLA's mandate and the specific functions of its divisions, please visit our internet site at:

Org. Setting and Reporting

The Office of Legal Affairs is recruiting interns for the period of 3 April to 31 August 2017 for its six (6) divisions located in New York. We are seeking highly motivated graduate or undergraduate students who wish to gain professional experience in international law within an international organization in order to supplement their studies. This internship will include practical educational experience which provides the opportunity to work in a multicultural intergovernmental organization. Under the supervision of legal officers, interns are assigned to projects and tasks that are most relevant to their educational background and interests. The interns will have an opportunity to apply and further develop their theoretical knowledge.


Responsibilities of internship positions range widely, encompassing many aspects of OLA's work. These responsibilities may include, but are not limited to:

• Assisting in conducting legal research on issues related to international law and other areas of specialization using multiple research resources;

• Assisting in the review of legal documents, instruments or other material;

• Assisting in drafting and preparing official and legal documents;

• Attending and taking notes at conferences and meetings;

• Assisting in servicing conferences and meetings;

• Working on website and/or presentations.


PROFESSIONALISM: Applicants must demonstrate a keen interest in the work of the United Nations and have a personal commitment to the ideals of the Charter of the United Nations. They must have an ability to work effectively in a team in a multicultural environment, and to work collaboratively with colleagues and external counterparts. In addition, they must have good drafting and oral communication skills, and be computer literate in standard software applications.

COMMUNICATION: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

TEAMWORK: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others' ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.

CLIENT ORIENTATION: Considers all those to whom services are provided to be "clients" and seeks to see things from clients' point of view; establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; identifies clients' needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; monitors ongoing developments inside and outside the clients' environment to keep informed and anticipate problems; keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects; meets timeline for delivery of products or services to client.


To qualify for an internship with the United Nations Internship Programme, applicants, at the time of application, must meet one of the following requirements:

(a) be enrolled in a graduate school programme (second university degree or equivalent, or higher);

(b) be enrolled in the final academic year of a first university degree programme (minimum Bachelor's level or equivalent); or

(c) have graduated with a university degree (as defined above) and, if selected, must commence the internship within a one year period of graduation. The degree programme which applicants are enrolled in or have recently graduated from must be in law. Applicants must demonstrate their intention to study further or to work in a field relevant to the work of OLA.

Work Experience

Applicants are not required to have professional work experience for participation in the programme. However, applicants are encouraged to list all relevant work experiences in their PHP.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat in New York For the internship advertised, proficiency in oral and written English is required, and knowledge of French is desirable. Knowledge of another United Nations official working language, i.e. Arabic, Chinese, Russian or Spanish, is an advantage.


Should there be a need for an intern that matches the applicant's profile, she/he will be contacted directly by the Division(s). Due to the large number of applications, only shortlisted applicants will be contacted.

United Nations Considerations

Candidates will be required to meet the requirements of Article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter as well as the requirements of the position. The United Nations is committed to the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity for all its human resources, including but not limited to respect for international human rights and humanitarian law. Candidates may be subject to screening against these standards, including but not limited to whether they have committed, or are alleged to have committed criminal offences and/or violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

The United Nations shall place no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. (Charter of the United Nations - Chapter 3, article 8). The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the At-a-Glance on "The Application Process" and the Instructional Manual for the Applicants, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of inspira account-holder homepage.

Applications are pre-screened by the system according to the published requirements of the job opening on the basis of the information provided in the application. In relation to the requirements of the job opening, applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their qualifications, including their education, work experience, and language skills. Each applicant must bear in mind that submission of incomplete or inaccurate applications may render that applicant ineligible for consideration for the job opening. Initial screening and evaluation of applications will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted. Applications cannot be amended following submission. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to a reference-checking process to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at midnight (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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