What is the UN Young Professionals Programme?
The Young Professionals Programme (YPP) is a recruitment initiative for talented, highly qualified professionals to start a career as an international civil servant with the United Nations Secretariat. It consists of an entrance examination and professional development programmes once successful candidates start their career with the UN.
Who can apply?
The YPP examination is held once a year and is open to nationals of countries participating in the annual recruitment exercise. The list of participating countries is published annually and varies from year to year.
Basic application criteria:
- You must have the nationality of a participating country.
- You must hold at least a first-level university degree relevant for the exam subject you are applying for.
- You must be 32 or younger in the year of the examination.
- You must be fluent in either English or French.
Participation of staff of the United Nations
This examination is also held for staff members of the United Nations Secretariat who work within the General Service and other related categories and aspire to a career within the Professional and higher categories. For more information about staff members participating in the young professionals programme, click here.
Depending on the staffing needs of the United Nations, applicants are invited to apply for different exam subjects. Descriptions of responsibilities, expected competencies and education requirements differ depending on the area. Exam subjects will be announced later this year.
Step 1: Confirm your eligibility
Carefully review basic application criteria on the YPP Home page.
Step 2: Review the job opening
Read the job opening for the exam subject you are interested in and make sure you fulfil the requirements. The list of job openings can be found on the YPP Home page.
Step 3: Prepare an application
Apply to the selected job opening through Inspira. Additional guidelines on creating applications are available by clicking on the “Manuals and Help’’ link found in the upper right-hand corner of the webpage when you log in to https://inspira.un.org.
Important Practical Information
- Screening questions: Make sure you carefully read through the screening questions. They are intended to verify the eligibility of applicants. If you cannot answer all screening questions affirmatively you might not be eligible to take part in the YPP.
- Nationality: In the field marked “Country of Nationality”, enter the participating country under which you wish to be considered for the examination. Please note that the fields “Nationality at Birth” and “Other Nationalities” will not be considered in the eligibility screening.
- Education: It might happen that your obtained education does not correspond to any of the given choices. If your exact education is not listed in the drop-down menu, please select the closest relevant option and explain discrepancies under “Additional Comments.” Only if you find no match at all, you may chose “Other” in these two fields. The “Specialization” field will not be considered in the screening process.
- Work experience: Where more than 40 candidates of the same nationality apply for the YPP, relevant work experience will be used to rank candidates. Please be precise and succinct about your work experience. To view an example, click here.
- Languages: You must be fluent in all four areas (speak, read, write, understand) in English or French. Indicating anything less than “Fluent” in any of the four areas will render you unqualified.
Step 4: Application evaluation
Your application will be screened to determine if you are eligible for the examination in the exam subject you applied for. If more than 40 applicants from the same country apply for the same exam area, those applicants will be further screened and ranked by a Human Resources Officer according to points given for the following additional qualifications: highest level of education completed, knowledge of official UN languages, and relevant work experience. Please be aware that many potential applicants do not pass the screening stage due to incomplete or inaccurate applications.
If your application was successful, you will be informed that you are convoked to the examination. If determined that you are not eligible to apply or if your application was unsuccessful, you will be informed that you have not been convoked to the examination. You will be able to check the status of your application by typing your application number in the search section on the Convocation status & Examination centrepage.