How to Get an Internship in Monitoring and Evaluation

Find an Internship in Monitoring and Evaluation
Find an Internship in Monitoring and Evaluation

Introduction  #

Are you close to graduating from the university and planning to start a career in monitoring and evaluation? Not sure what to do and the threat of unemployment is breathing down your neck?

Then it’s time to apply for an internship in Monitoring and Evaluation. This change in your life marks an important transition period from university to the real world.

To smoothen that change and make sure you’re prepared, getting an M&E internship position is the perfect way to kickstart your career.

You might find, however, that even some internships demand work experience – what gives, right? If you want to get rid of the existential dread (i.e. unemployment), this guide is for you.

We’ll be covering everything you need to know about getting the first internship that’ll give you a smooth start in your career.

Let’s dive in!

How to Find and Get an Internship #

The truth is, there are many different openings available out there, but the important part is finding the right one where you’d be an ideal candidate.

If you start sending out your resume to every internship opening though, you probably won’t get far.

So, the best places to look for monitoring and evaluation internship role include:

  • Job and internship boards 
  • Job fairs
  • Cold emailing the company directly

Now, here’s how to do each.

#1. Job and Internship Boards #

Thanks to the power of the internet, there are countless job boards where you can start applying for internships.

Now, the problem with that is, there really is an almost endless amount of job boards to choose from. So, if you were to start looking for and applying board-to-board one-by-one, that approach would simply take too long, and land you very few actual openings.

And if that wasn’t enough, there are also countless people competing against you, for the same spot.

  • To beat the competition though, make sure you’re filtering the job boards to your location. This way, you’re at least only competing with people in your region.

Here’s a list of some of the best job listings boards you can find an internship on:

  • EvalCommunity – Niche Job board with a focus on Monitoring and Evaluation.
  • Glassdoor – traditional job-board with a twist – you can read reviews on employers and decide whether a specific company is right for you
  • Indeed
  • AngelList – job board for startups of all sizes. If you’re the entrepreneurial type, you might want to try interning at a startup
  • WayUp – jobs, internships, part-time positions from startups to Fortune 500 companies
  • LinkedIn
  • Google (search for “internship + (your location)”
  • Google for Jobs
  • ZipRecruiter
  • Dice – jobs in the tech industry. Find salary estimations, career path tips, and so on.
  • Idealist – search engine for all things career development: internships, jobs, volunteering, and more.
  • LinkUp
  • InternshipFinder
  • Facebook groups – look for university career development groups and job fairs near you.
  • ErasmusIntern – still in university or a recent grad? You might still be eligible for an Erasmus internship with a scholarship!

All of these sites offer both regular positions, as well as internships. As a given, most of them also have good filtering options (you can filter by industry, job type, and so on). If it’s a remote intern position, you can use virtual meeting tools to ace the interview. 

While applying to the above websites, make sure you’re constantly checking for new openings, at least weekly. As long as you keep at it, it should just be a matter of time before you land that awesome internship.

#2. Job Fairs #

Job fairs might seem scary at first, since they require you to be physically there and network. But if done well, they can really open up a lot of doors and get your foot in the door on the spot. You’re likely to find job fairs and openings at university and school campuses. 

The next time you see one, do your research on who’s going to be presenting there and make sure you spend some time talking with the hiring managers there. You don’t even have to be good at networking, as long as you go there, and show you’re motivated to start (should be easier in person), you’re likely to come out of the job fair with a few leads.

It’s easier to build rapport with the HR manager if you’ve done your research on what they do. In turn, they’ll appreciate that you took your time and as long as you stay memorable, you’ll have a real chance of getting that call back.

#3. Cold emailing the company directly #

The cold email is far from dead. What’s so great about this approach is that if you have a company in mind you’d like to intern for, and even if they don’t offer any openings, if done well, you can still get your foot in the door.

Sounds easier said than done? Well, the process is actually fairly straightforward. You find the manager’s email address or contact information and ask for an internship. Yes, you have to be very direct for this. No, it’s not rude. If anything, this approach shows the recruiter that you’re self-driven and your initiative.

To find companies you’d be into, simply google “(company type) + (location)” for some companies doing business in your region. Once you have a company in mind, you have to shoot out an email to one of the decision makers. You can try and find their email from LinkedIn, or if it’s not that, from their personal website. When emailing, make sure you’re polite, brief, and explain your situation in a very straightforward manner. 

Invited for a virtual interview as an M&E intern? Then read our virtual meetings: Best Practices to ace the interview.

How Tailoring Your Resume Can Help Find Internships #

Use EvalCommunity Resume Scanner and mprove your resume to specific job postings with the Leading Resume / CV Scanner in Monitoring & Evaluation and International Development.

78% of hiring professionals in Monitoring and Evaluation and International Development jobs have found resumes get through the initial review phase when they are reviewed again by a person. After being scrutinized by software programmed to spot keywords, applicants’ applications are rejected.

We recognize that you will have multiple skills and past jobs that might be relevant to a certain position, but not everyone needs to see all of them on just one resume. With EvalCommunity Resume Scanner, you optimize your resume per job, supported by your customer success manager. This guarantees that your resume maximizes your chances to be picked by the employer.

Paid Internships in Monitoring & Evaluation #

These are just a few examples of some of the prestigious internship programs available to Monitoring and Evaluation young professionals: start applying to increase your chances of enrolling in the top programs!

Work in development can be challenging and stressful. But no need to panic! With each decision you make, there is a potential payoff down the line. Keep going!

All of these opportunities can make you stand out from the crowd and accelerate your M&E trajectory.

These internship programs and fellowships provide real-world experience and exposure to the workplace, as either a resident or by working with some of the most influential organizations and NGOs in the world.

United Nations Development Programme #

Internships are a great way for students and graduates to enjoy a taste of the UNDP community and mission, as they play an integral role in the future of development work.

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) are accepting applications for a range of will-available internships on key global and development projects. Excellent opportunities await!

These positions can be found on the UNDP website, and are suitable for any current or recent graduate in a range of fields.

These internships vary in terms of length and placement; recipients can be placed at any of the UNDP country offices, regional hubs, or at the UNDP Headquarters in New York.

Although internships in Monitoring and Evaluation are rare, as most internships are graduate-level positions whereas M&E jobs are more specialised, they do occur from time to time.

But any internship with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) is highly valued, and many of these programs are a great opportunity with a relevant organization development-oriented; a position from which M&E skills can certainly be honed.

UNDP internships should not exceed 6 months. Exceptionally, internships may last 9 months when they are being completed for academic credit.

Am I eligible for the internship program with UNDP? #

Applicants for UNDP internships must meet one of the following academic requirements:

Applicants' requirements for an Internship with UNDP
Applicants’ requirements for an Internship with UNDP

Languages: To be eligible to apply, applicants should have at least two of the three working languages of the United Nations Development Program:  English, French and Spanish. Fluency in Arabic, Portuguese, Russian or Eastern European language is an asset.

World Food Programme #

The World Food Programme (WFP) is always looking for talented, motivated and enthusiastic people to fill a variety of roles. An internship at WFP gives you the opportunity to experience WFP while working on projects that directly contribute to one of WFP’s goals: Zero Hunger.

WFP is a global humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. Each year, they run summer internships in different areas, including a 3-month summer internship. The internship includes a stipend for the period. Go for it!

Am I eligible for the internship program with WFP? #

In order to be interviewed for an internship with WFP, please meet the following requirements:

Applicants' requirements for an Internship with WFP
Applicants’ requirements for an Internship with WFP

WFP internships last from two to eight months, and interns will receive a monthly stipend which varies based on duty station. The maximum amount is US$1000 per month.

Before your internship with WFP, you will be required to prove you have basic medical insurance coverage. You will be responsible for organizing all your own travel and accommodation arrangements, but WFP will reimburse the cost of your purchased tickets if you are a national of a developing country and are pursuing education in your home country.

Check the Internship annually to determine whether this is the internship for your specific Monitoring and Evaluation and broader development practice skillset. The WFP has a vacancy page for reviewing multiple short-term opportunities in the field of Monitoring and Evaluation.

EPoD Fellowships with the Harvard Kennedy School #

The EPoD Research Fellows Program is both a pre-doctoral opportunity for talented individuals interested in pursuing an academic career in economics or public policy, and an avenue for EPoD professors to work with highly qualified individuals.

EPoD fellowships are targeted towards Monitoring and Evaluation professionals who are about to start a PhD in microeconomics, and conduct research and gain hands-on research experience in experimental design, econometric analysis, and data collection and analysis.

In addition, the program aims to give students the opportunity to travel to developing countries, gaining hands-on experience with important issues facing the world today.

Fellowships are typically 12 months, with an extension granted if you’re both still interested and the funding allows.

One of the largest opportunities of EPoD is bringing together PhD fellows from around the world to advance interdisciplinary research and education in the field of complex systems, y including the Monitoring and Evaluation field.

Am I eligible for the internship program with EPoD Research Fellows Program ? #

If you’re interested in how to monitor evidence-based practices, this is a great opportunity! Harvard Kennedy School is committed to recruiting a highly diverse community of faculty, researchers, staff, and students.  In order to ensure diversity within the community, EPoD invite applications from women, minorities, and those whose background and experience will bring additional dimensions to the discussion and M&E sector.

And here are the necessary steps to eventually qualify for this internship with EPoD Research Fellows Program:

Applicants' requirements for an Internship with EPoD
Applicants’ requirements for an Internship with EPoD

The World Bank Young Professionals Programme (WBG YPP) #

The World Bank Group was launched in 1999 during the meeting of the 189 member countries. Its goal is to fight poverty and boost growth in developing countries by financing various programs. These programs vary in topics depending on the need of the country where they are implemented. In a nutshell, the World Bank Group is a decentralized organization that brings countries together to fight poverty.

Young Professionals with diverse backgrounds are recruited from across the world through the World Bank’s Young Professionals Programme, a 2-year graduate internship programme.

The program now recruits on behalf of three institutions  (the World BankIFC and MIGA) has had a remarkable growth and has achieved a very good reputation in the Monitoring and Evaluation field.

Candidates spend time learning key skills at the Head Office in Washington DC, where they are trained in all the important elements of being a young leader in the field – key to this is identifying opportunities to optimise social impact, something for which strategy and M&E skills are critical.

Am I eligible for the internship program with Word Bank? #

To be considered for the WBG YPP, applicants must:

  • Must have been born on or after October 1, 1991
  • Have a master’s or PHD
  • Specialize in a field relevant to YPP Business Areas
  • Relevant professional experience or study at the doctoral level
  • Be fluent in English
  • The Bank’s Group recruitment policy is to hire staff of the highest caliber, on as wide a geographical basis as possible, with preference to nationals of WBG member countries or countries of operations.
Internship program with World Bank
Source WB – Internship program with World Bank

If you are particularly concerned about Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E), then this internship will supplement your technical skills and knowledge with critical leadership and navigating opportunities, and following your Young Professionals Program (YPP), you will have five years of work experience in the World Bank, or associated network.

International Institute for Environment and Development #

The iied offers a range of paid and unpaid internship positions. Only a small number of internships are offered each year, with each internship being a carefully planned and well-delivered professional development opportunity which serves both the intern and the organisation. These internship positions may be in the Research Department on various areas including Climate Change, Human  Settlements, or Shaping Sustainable Markets, where projects on monitoring and evaluation may be particularly relevant. Other possible departments include the Strategy and Learning Group, where M&E is a sound fit, or the Green Economy Coalition for those working in development practice focused on climate and sustainability.

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Center for Global Development #

The Center for Global Development (CGD) is an organisation focused on reducing global poverty and inequality. The organisation focuses on rigorous research for policy advice and is an excellent place to begin your development career, particularly if policy development is your area of interest. Evidence-based policy setting, with sound M&E to inform and monitor policy implementation can arguably significantly improve the lives and livelihoods of many. Internship opportunities are frequently advertised on the website, and these vary in length and value, depending on the amount of work required.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development #

These internships are an excellent opportunity for the development economists amongst you, or those with financial or corporate foundations in your studies, looking to move into more meaningful work in development. EBRD Internships will provide the opportunity to conduct financial analyses as these relate to development projects and would be a good opportunity to develop an understanding of how to evaluate returns to social projects, and social impact. The internships also involve research and report writing on broader economic and policy developments in countries where the EBRD operates. The internships provide a thorough and well-rounded introduction to rigorous development practice, with a financial and investment focus. If your skillset lies at the nexus of investment, impact and policy, then this would be an excellent opportunity.

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The OPEC Fund for International Development #

The OPEC Fund focuses on projects which place people and their basic needs at the core of their development activities. The fund focuses on development projects in education, healthcare and sanitation, all areas where sound M&E can substantially increase programme efficacy. The OPEC Fund offers a range of internship opportunities for students from diverse academic backgrounds with a view to providing critical work experience in an international organisation.  These paid internships may involve placement in one of a number of departments including public sector operations, private sector and trade, strategic planning, economic services and others. Working across 135 countries, this is an excellent opportunity to gain real exposure to working in development.

USAID Payne International Development Fellowship #

The USAID Donald M Payne International Development Graduate Fellowship is a prestigious development opportunity for those looking to gain work experience within an organisation which is a global leader in international development. This is a well-paid internship opportunity, which aims to attract exceptional graduates. On completion of the internship, Fellows are appointed to the USAID Foreign Service where they are required to serve in full-time positions for 5 years. The internship focuses on pressing development challenges across the spectrum of work conducted by the USAID including poverty, hunger, injustice, disease and climate change, amongst others. If you are already specialised in one of these areas and hold key M&E skills then this could be an excellent start to a thriving career at the cutting edge of development.

DME for Peace #

Development Monitoring and Evaluation or peace is a platform to network development and M&E practitioners and to feature opportunities in M&E and development practice, particularly in relation to peacebuilding and humanitarian issues. The M&E intern positions are listed on the jobs page of this platform. Smaller, M&E specific internship opportunities are frequently advertised here. For those looking to develop careers in the study of peacebuilding, and using M&E for analysing programmes implemented in conflict zones, and how to improve development efficacy in these contexts, this is a site to check frequently for excellent and unique internship opportunities.

Key Takeaway #

If everything goes well, landing the perfect internship as a monitoring and evaluation intern can jumpstart your career. But getting one might seem complicated at first, especially if you’re just fresh out of college and have little to no real-world experience.

The good news is though, that you don’t in fact need a lot of hands-on experience to land an internship. So, to recap here are the steps necessary to land that dream internship:

  • Start with creating a convincing resume. Your resume should look awesome even if you have zero work experience. (you can use a resume builder to help you with this).
  • Then, make sure your resume has all the necessary information about you: your contact information, resume summary or objective, work experience, skills, education, and other optional sections.
  • To really convince the HR manager you’ve got what it takes, make sure your cover letter is up to par as well.
  • With your resume & cover letter ready, make sure you’re looking for an internship in the right job and internship boards, you’re checking local job fairs, and if needed, even cold emailing your dream companies.
  • Once you get that callback, do your research, prepare for the job interview questions and put on your best clothes.

Remember, finding an internship is a numbers game. If you’re following the above steps, it’s only a matter of time until you land one.

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