UNESCO Chair Communications Specialist

York University Published: September 1, 2020
Toronto, Ontario
Internship Type
Hours per week
Start Date
End Date


York University champions new ways of thinking that drive teaching and research excellence. Through cross-disciplinary programming, innovative course design, diverse experiential learning and a supportive community environment, our students receive the education they need to create big ideas that make an impact on the world. Located in Toronto, York is the third largest university in Canada, with a strong community of 53,000 students, 7,000 faculty and administrative staff, and more than 300,000 alumni.

For the UNESCO Chair at York University, we are seeking support in expanding and optimizing our outreach strategy. Due to the pandemic, we moved all of our activities from an in-person approach to online activities and are now working to position ourselves with a new portfolio of activities and contributions to support the SDGs, in particular SDG 4.

The intern will support and further develop our adapted communications and advocacy strategy, promote our research projects and global networks, coordinate webinars, and further our resource mobilization. As a small, but rapidly growing unit within York University, the intern will be able to play a significant role in shaping and delivering our outreach strategy.

Duties and responsibilities

Key areas of focus:

  • Supporting and further developing the outreach strategy with key messages and new media standards underlining the UNESCO Chair mandate to support achieving the targets of SDG 4 (4.5/4.7) with a focus on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and the education of Indigenous Peoples as one of the groups specifically mentioned
  • Write engaging content to promote the Chair and UNESCO, and to contribute to broader discussions on global education
  • Drafting high-quality content for use in our communications outreach;
  • Contribute to a bi-monthly newsletter to update our stakeholders on recent developments
  • Organizing, promoting and managing virtual events and webinars promoting the SDGs and ESD;
  • Supporting and further developing a strong media strategy across all channels; proactively develop content for outwards communication
  • Seek out communications opportunities for the UNESCO Chair
  • Monitoring media for news updates on our stakeholders and keeping the UNESCO Chair team informed
  • Work closely with our strategic partners within York University (York International, York Sustainability Office and the Faculty of Education)
  • Carry out some administrative work, such as data management of our CRM system.
  • Providing research and administrative support to the chair
  • Taking minutes in meetings when needed


Knowledge and skills

  • Superior writing and research skills - able to convey complex ideas clearly and engagingly and can adjust style to reach a variety of different audiences.
  • Proven ability to synthesize information and communicate it simply and effectively.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills with strong attention to detail.
  • Intellectual curiosity and passion for education, global development and/or innovative finance.
  • Thrives in a nimble start-up environment, where everyone can and should take the initiative beyond their scope of work and respond to shifting priorities with agility.
  • Self-starter able to take on project ownership (with genuine responsibility) while seeking input when appropriate.
  • Knowledge of office computer systems (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, WordPress) and desk based researching.
  • Understanding of UNESCO's mandate is a must, UNESCO experience an asset.
  • Fluency in English (both written and oral) is required. Knowledge of another official UN language is an asset.

Education required

  • A university degree (Bachelor's or higher).
  • Study or experience in (international) education and/or sustainability, communications and/or PR/media would be an asset.


Certification required


Eligibility criteria

Qualified interns are:

  • Between 15 and 30 years of age at the start of the internship
  • Canadian citizens, permanent residents or persons granted refugee status in Canada1
  • Legally allowed to work according to the relevant provincial and Canadian legislation and regulations
  • Available to participate in an ImpAct internship for a flexible duration of up to 6 months by March 1, 2021
  • Not employees of the hiring employer prior to the start of their internship (does not apply to previous coop students or student interns, although this must be clearly indicated by the employer)

1Refugee protection must be conferred under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. Persons awaiting refugee status, as well as those who hold a temporary visitor visa, student visa or work visa, are ineligible to participate in a Youth Employment Strategy initiative.

Drop files here browse files ...
Allowed formats: pdf, doc, txt, rtf, docx
Drop files here browse files ...
Allowed formats: pdf, doc, txt, rtf, docx
Accept and Submit