Ministry of External Affairs internship opportunities for UG students, Graduates, Research Scholars


Are you a graduate/research scholar/undergraduate interested to learn about the foreign policies of the Government of India? The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) is providing an opportunity for an internship at their Headquarters in India and at their Missions/Posts abroad. This article has the details of the internship program, eligibility criteria, application procedure and all other relevant details associated with the program.

About the internship with MEA

For the talented young individual, an internship with the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) is an opportunity to get acquainted with the process of formulating the foreign policies and its implementation by the government. Selected interns have to work under the guidance of Head of Division (HOD) or Head of Mission (HOM) or Head of Post (HOP) in the headquarters of the ministry (MEA) or its Missions/Posts. The interns will be attached to any of the Divisions in the ministry and they will be briefed about the functioning as well as the organizational structure of the ministry. Interns engaged in the Indian Missions/Posts will be attached to any of the wings of the Missions/Posts. According to the requirements, the interns may carry out research, analyze any specific development concerning the foreign affairs of India, make reports and perform any other task deemed fit by the concerned Heads of their Division/Post/Mission.

Divisions of MEA

For the progress of a country, bilateral relationship with its neighbours and also with other countries across the world is essential. The MEA has specific divisions that look after the relations of India with a particular country, a group of countries or a region. For example, AMS Division looks after the relationship with Canada and the USA. The BM Division looks after various matters regarding Bangladesh and Myanmar. Likewise, Central Europe Division looks after the relations with countries in Central Europe.

Many other divisions look after specific requirements in the ministry such as A & RM Division that manages records and archives, CPV Division that deals with legal documents like Passport, issuance of visas, the policy of extradition, etc. The Establishment Division looks after matters related to property, purchase of various equipment, allotting accommodation, etc. The various divisions of the Ministry of External Affairs are given below.
  • AMS [Americas] Division
  • A & RM DIVISION
  • BIMSTEC, SAARC DIVISION & NALANDA
  • BM [Bangladesh, Myanmar ] Division
  • CCCS Division
  • Central Europe Division
  • Central and West Africa Division
  • CNV & I Division
  • CPV [Consular Passport, Visa] Division
  • CT [Counter Terrorism] Division
  • Cyber Diplomacy Division
  • DPA [Development Partnership Administration] Division
  • D & ISA [Disarmament & International Security Affairs] Division
  • EA [East Asia] Division
  • Economic Diplomacy & States Division
  • Establishment Division
  • Eurasia Division
  • Europe West Division
  • External Publicity & Public Diplomacy [XPD] Division
  • E & SA [East & Southern Africa] Division
  • EG & IT [E-Governance & Information Technology] Division
  • Finance Division
  • Global Estate Management (GEM) Division
  • Gulf Division
  • Indian Ocean Region Division
  • Indo-Pacific Division
  • LAC [Latin America & Carribbean] Division
  • L & T [Legal & Treaties] Division
  • MER [Multilateral Economic Relations] Division
  • NEST [New Emerging & Strategic Technologies] Division
  • Northern [Nepal, Bhutan] Division
  • PAI [Pakistan, Afghanistan & Iran] Division
  • Parliament & Coordination Division
  • PP & R [Policy Planning & Research] Division
  • Protocol Division
  • PSP Division
  • Rajbhasha and Bharatiya Bhashayein, I&T Division
  • Southern Division
  • Summits and Conference Division
  • UNES [United Nations Economic & Social] Division
  • UNP [United Nations Political] Division
  • WANA [West Asia & North Africa] Division
  • Welfare Division

Each Division is under a Joint Secretary (JS) and the JS has a team of officers like Officer on Special Duty (OSD), Undersecretary (US) etc to manage the affairs of the Division.

The Head of Mission (HOM) is the diplomatic representative of a country posted abroad. The term for the HOM may vary from country to country. It may be the High Commissioner, Ambassador, Permanent Representative, etc. Indian nationals staying abroad can do the internship programs in the Foreign Mission office of India in the country they reside in.

Benefits of the internship programs

The advantage of this internship program is an opportunity to interact with officers of IFS rank that helps aspirants of government services in a great way. The experience the interns gain by carrying out various tasks entrusted to them is an opportunity to learn things practically which is otherwise limited only to reading materials as a topic during their academic years. Since the MEA has many divisions and work in each division depends on the immediate requirement, applicants of any discipline can apply for the internship programs.

The Divisions are allotted to the interns based on their academic qualifications and experience of work in a specific field. For example, Postgraduate/Graduate in Law will be preferred in L & T [Legal & Treaties] Division. Whereas, applicants having a background and work experience in the field of Information Technology/Computer Science will be preferred in EG & IT [E-Governance & Information Technology] Division. Likewise, a Postgraduate in subjects related to Social Welfare will be preferred in the Welfare Division. Postgraduates/Graduates in Economics or related subjects will be preferred in Finance Division/ UNES [United Nations Economic & Social] Division depending on the requirement.

Eligibility to apply

Only Indian citizens can apply for an internship in the MEA headquarters. If OCI card holders living outside the country wish to apply for the internship program, they can apply to the concerned Indian Mission/Posts of the respective country where they are staying.
  • The age of the applicant has to be less than 30 years at the time of application
  • The applicant has to be either a final year student of an undergraduate programme or a graduate or a research scholar
  • Applicants having a very good academic performance throughout their studentship from a reputed institution and with a reliable recommendation from a faculty/guide will be preferred
  • Research Scholars having a good academic record with a reliable recommendation from a faculty/guide will be preferred


Duration of internship

The duration of the internship can vary from 1 month to 6 months. Interns doing their internship in MEA Headquarters may get an extension in some exceptional circumstances depending upon the situation which will be decided by the concerned authorities.

Recognition of internship

Depending upon the recommendations by the Head of Division (HOD)/Head of Mission (HOM)/Head of Post (HOP) the certificate will be issued to the interns by the respective Heads.

Support to the interns

This internship is unpaid. Interns need to work inside the premises of MEA Headquarters/Missions/Posts only. Based on the requirement of the work carried out by the interns, logistics will be provided to them. This internship should not be considered as an assurance of future engagement with MEA in terms of employment.

Application procedure

Interested applicants may apply throughout the year. The procedure to apply for the internship is given below.
  • The application form, available on the website of the ministry has to be filled in by the interested candidate
  • For applicants residing in India, photocopy/scanned copies of minimum 3 identity proofs like Passport/Voter ID/Aadhar Card /Driving License/PAN Card/Ration Card are required to be submitted along with the application form
  • For applications residing outside India, they must submit the photocopy/scanned copies of their OCI card, Passport and National Identity Card
  • The applicant has to submit their Curriculum Vitae
  • The applicant has to submit an introduction letter in official letterhead issued by the Head of the Institute from where she/he is presently pursuing/completed education
  • If the applicant is pursuing a program while applying for the internship, a NOC from the University/Institute has to be submitted
  • Applicants have to submit the self-attested copies of all the previous and present educational certificates along with the Projects they took up


The above documents along with the Application form have to be sent to the headquarters of MEA four months before the start of the internship program through registered/speed post to the following address:
  • Joint Secretary (Administration)
    Ministry of External Affairs
    Room No.149 A, South Block
    New Delhi – 110011


Before sending the documents by post, applicants may send all the documents and the application form through email to jsad@mea.gov.in and usfsp@mea.gov.in.

Applicants residing outside holding OCI cards will have to send their application to the Head of Chancery at the respective official address of the Mission/Posts.

Selection procedure

A Selection Committee of the Ministry will verify all the applications and the selected candidates will be informed accordingly. Interaction with the applicant may be carried out by the committee where they can also verify the submitted documents with the original ones. To select the interns, the decision of the Selection Committee is final and they will not consider queries after the process of selection is completed.

Points to remember

  • The present pandemic situation has forced the MEA to postpone the internship program and applications for the program are not accepted until further notice. Candidates should visit the website periodically to know for the latest updates
  • Around thirty interns may do their internship with the Ministry at a time. In the case of Missions/Posts, they can engage a maximum of two interns at a time
  • The association of the intern with the Ministry/Mission/Post can be terminated at any time without assigning any reason if the Ministry/Mission/Post thinks so and their decision in this regard will be final
  • If an intern is willing to leave the internship program, she/he must notify the Ministry one week in advance


Contact information

Joint Secretary (Administration)
Ministry of External Affairs
Room No.149 A, South Block
New Delhi – 110011
Website: https://www.mea.gov.in/
Internship Program and Application form link: https://www.mea.gov.in/internship-in-mea.htm
Email address for any queries: usfsp@mea.gov.in, jsad@mea.gov.in and queries should be addressed to Under Secretary (FSP)


Article by Sankalan Bhattacharya
Sankalan "Life is easier when you enjoy what you do"

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