UNANY Summer Scholars 2015 Fellowships




The United Nations Association of New York Summer Scholars Fellowships is a pilot program established by UNA-NY for the purpose of enabling two students in graduate degree programs to experience work abroad with the United Nations or its agencies, as well as non-governmental organizations. The mission of the Scholars program is to foster direct knowledge and understanding of the United Nations and international organizations.

The two fellowships being awarded for 2015 are situated in Lesotho and Paraguay, and are UNA-NY collaborations with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and Plan International respectively. More information follows below for each of these programs.

Criteria for Selection

  • Applicants must be enrolled in a university as full-time graduate students
  • Submission of CV as well as Statement of Purpose letter
  • Three letters of recommendation

Award Conditions

  • The Summer Scholars fellowship provides a stipend to cover all travel and living expenses.
  • The award recipients are expected to participate in a UNA-NY program related to their fellowship experience, during the fall of 2015.
  • The recipients are expected to keep a blog of their summer experience and, at the end of their involvement, submit a letter documenting the results of the research project.

Housing and Budget

Costs associated with participation in the program will be assumed by UNA-NY, which will provide the required financial assistance to the student for the duration of the internship. The grant will cover round-trip airfare to and from the selected country, as well as housing and food. Housing will be available in small hotels or apartments selected by the host UN office or NGO office. 

The award recipients are responsible for ensuring that all passports and necessary visas are in order, as well as providing necessary immunization and vaccination certificates. Proof of medical and evacuation insurance must also be submitted prior to departure.

LESOTHO | Social and Behavioral Change Communication

This three-month Summer Scholars fellowship, in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), is focused on Social and Behavioral Change Communication, as part of the UNFPA Adolescents Program in Lesotho (East and Central African Region).


UNFPA works in more than 150 countries and territories that are home to the vast majority of the world's people. Its mission: to ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and every young person's potential is fulfilled. This program is situated in the UNFPA Lesotho Country Office during the summer of 2015, with a focus on youth and adolescents.

The population of Lesotho is estimated at 1,876,633 (51% women, and 49% men). Lesotho is largely rural with 77% of the population in rural areas, while 23% reside in urban areas. The profile is relatively young, with 58% under 19 years.

Priority issues: UNFPA supported programs address a high HIV prevalence, as well as high maternal mortality and morbidity, particularly among young people.


The intern will contribute to the effective management of UNFPA support and interventions in the area of HIV prevention, as well as Sexual and Reproductive Health information and services for youth and young adolescents. S/he will establish and maintain collaborative relationships with youth-related institutions and organizations. There will be a focus on strengthening the program's operational effectiveness, including an emphasis at the community level of efficiently addressing youth and adolescent sexual and reproductive health and rights issues.

For complete information on this Summer Scholars fellowship, as well as submission requirements and applicant qualifications, download the PDF.

PARAGUAY | Institutional Positioning and Communications

This three-month Summer Scholars fellowship, in collaboration with Plan International, is focused on Institutional Positioning and Communications, a part of Plan outreach to assist improvements in the quality of life of deprived children in developing countries.


Plan International is a development organization operating in 51 countries across Africa, Asia and the Americas, working to promote and protect the rights of children. Founded over 75 years ago, it is one of the oldest and largest children's development organizations in the world, and its work is linked to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Plan assists many children, especially those who are excluded or marginalized, through high quality programs that provide long-lasting benefits by increasing family incomes, through working in partnership and operating effectively. It is also independent, with no religious, political or governmental affiliations.

Paraguay is a developing country in South America where 35% of the population lives in poverty and 19% is in extreme poverty. There is significant income inequality: 90% of the population receives 59% of the total income, while the richest 10% receive 41%. Poverty affects especially children: in 2010, 45% of children lived in poverty and 27% in extreme poverty (Permanent Household Census 2010: Department of Statistics, Surveys and Censuses, DGEEC).

Plan currently works with more than 25,000 sponsored children in Paraguay, while also benefiting around 150,000 people in nearly 500 local communities


Under the supervision of the Institutional Positioning and Communications Manager, the intern will provide support to Plan's Paraguay unit Institutional Positioning and Communications Department, in particular the Communications and PR Specialist, to improve communications within and outside the organization. General duties will include analysis and development of strategies to address the communication and informational needs of Paraguay Plan's internal departments, with recommendations for change and construction of new tools. S/he will help develop communication strategies within communities where Plan works, in order to assess the level, quality and effectiveness of existing communications in impact areas.

For complete information on this Summer Scholars fellowship, as well as submission requirements and applicant qualifications, download the PDF.