What are the eligibility criteria? 

  • Applicants must be a student enrolled in any UNSW degree by coursework (both full-time or part-time permitted). Strong priority will be given to students in their penultimate year of study with a demonstrated interest in human rights and/or development work.  

  • Applicants must have at least one subject to complete upon return from their Fellowship Program.   

  • Applicants must have a WAM of 70+ at the time of applying. 

  • Applicants must have the ability to complete the fellowship without compromising their studies, including assessments and examination periods.   

  • Applicants must be willing to write a report on the fellowship experience, as well as submit a personal profile for the Australian Human Rights Institute website and associated communications.   

  • Applicants should have a demonstrated interest in human rights and/or development issues.  

How do I apply?  

Applications for 2024/25 fellowships will open later this year. The below supporting documents will be required to attach to your application:  

  • CV – up to date, including your education, professional and volunteer experience etc. (max 2 pages) 

  • Cover letter – outlining your reasons for applying for the fellowship program; your preferences with a justification; your interest in the work and mission of each organisation you are applying for; and your human rights/international development study or work experience. (Max. 500 words in length) 

  • Academic transcript    

What are the key dates for 2024/25? 

  • Monday, 5 August – applications open 
  • 5pm Sunday, 1 September – applications close 
  • Monday, 16 September-Friday 20 September – shortlisted interviews 
  • From 7 October – successful candidates notified
  • Mid-late October – Global Student Fellowship Information session
  • December 2024 – February 2025 – Fellowship period 

2023-24 fellowship opportunities  

The Australian Human Rights Institute aims to ensure students receive a meaningful experience developing their skills for future employment. The projects will vary depending on current host organisation activities. Students will often be required to work independently, so a certain level of autonomy is required. 

Multiple fellowship opportunities are available and applicants are asked to clearly preference their choices in their cover letter. Please make sure you check the details for each opportunity below and that you are available to participate in the fellowship as outlined. 

Blue Dragon Children's Foundation - Hanoi, Vietnam  

Start date: Early December. The organisation will shut down over the Christmas-New Year period (22 December-13 January). 
Location: Hanoi, Vietnam for a minimum of three weeks and maximum of 30 days, working remotely for the remainder of the fellowship.  
Full-time/part-time: Flexible.  
Tasks: The fellow will support Blue Dragon's Research and Learning team to conduct research on human trafficking in Vietnam, document successful anti-trafficking models, and translate research and evaluation information into improvements and modifications of these models for replication and expansion into new geographical areas. 

Vietnamese language skills would be an asset but are not required.  

Human Rights Watch Australia - Sydney, Australia  

Start date: January 2024  
Location: Mix of Sydney office and remote. Two-three days in the office per week.    
Full-time/part-time: Flexible. 
Tasks: Working closely with the Australia team, the Fellow will undertake research, analysis, and outreach tasks to assist ongoing research on human rights in the region, with a particular focus on Australia.

International Organization for Migration | UN Migration - Bangkok, Thailand  

Start date: The start date will depend on the unit and manager for each opportunity and will be coordinated between the successful fellow and the host organisation.  
Location: Bangkok, Thailand for a minimum of three weeks, working remotely for the remainder of the fellowship.  
Full-time/part-time: It will depend on the unit/team the fellow is engaging with.  
Tasks: There are multiple opportunities available for the successful fellow within IOM: 

  1. The migration data and research unit: targeted research on climate change and human mobility. 

  1. The emergency and post-crisis unit: tasks may include writing of monitoring and evaluation reports, program updates and situation reports, strategy papers, data analysis and support to advocacy works. 

  1. The migration health unit. Tasks may include planning and implementation of migration health activities and coordination and networking with stakeholders and partners, with focus on advocacy and health policy. 

Jubilee Australia - Sydney, Australia  

Start date: Early December. The organisation will shut down over the Christmas-New Year period (25 December -2 January).  
Location: Mix of Sydney office and remote working. The fellow will be able to work from the office for at least one-two days per week throughout their fellowship.  
Full-time/part-time: Flexible.
Tasks: The fellow will undertake research to support Jubilee's work on just and rights-based natural resource extraction in Papua New Guinea (PNG). The internship is likely to focus on two projects: conducting research and writing a case study report on an illegal logging operation in PNG, and conducting an assessment of how the Papua LNG project aligns with key industry human rights & environmental standards.   

Walk Free - Perth, Australia  

Start date: Second week of January 2024. 
Location: First two weeks full-time in Perth office. Option to remain in Perth in-person or complete the rest of the fellowship remotely.
Full-time/part-time: Full-time to start for first two weeks, option to remain full-time or shift to part-time for the remainder of the fellowship.
Tasks: Walk Free is working to accelerate the end of modern slavery through research, advocacy and engagement. The  fellow will work with the Perth-based team to produce research and support various activities including events.   

How long is the fellowship? 

Fellowships are for a period of no less than six weeks and will take place during the university summer break. The start and end dates of each fellowship period can vary depending on the host organisation, although all fellowships must be completed prior to the end of February.  

Are fellowships in-person or remote? 

Fellowships may involve (subject to the agreement of the host organisation) in-person and/or remote participation, but we strongly recommend prioritising in-person participation for at least a portion of the fellowship. For overseas fellowships, students must spend at least three weeks in-country at the beginning of their fellowship.  

Are fellowships full-time or part-time? 

Whether the fellowship is full-time or part-time (or mixed) is to be discussed with your host organisation and subject to their agreement. In the past, fellows have done a mix of arrangements. Host organisations may state their preference for full-time or part-time, so please consider this when noting your preferences.  

What is the fellowship award? 

Successful students will receive a $6,500 AU award (no GST).   

Students will receive this award via the ER1 Student reimbursement form

Students will receive the $6,500 award regardless of domestic or international fellowships. 

What is the student agreement? 

Prior to commencing the fellowship, selected students will be sent a Student Agreement Form to sign. Students are advised to keep a record of this signed agreement for future reference. This agreement will outline the dates of the fellowship, and other key information.  

What do I have to do about visas and permits? 

Students travelling overseas for their fellowship may be required to obtain a visa or permit. Students are responsible for organising their own visa or permit. The Institute can provide information on the relevant visas and permits for each fellowship opportunity.  

How do I book flights and accommodation? 

If you are undertaking a student fellowship overseas, you will be responsible for booking and paying for your own flights and accommodation.   

Students will need to obtain pre-trip approval for their trip through the UNSW MyTravel system. The Institute will assist students with this process.   

What insurance is required (for both domestic and international fellowships)? 

UNSW students are covered by UNSW insurance for both domestic and international fellowships.   

When travelling, UNSW students will be covered by UNSW travel insurance after obtaining pre-trip approval via the MyTravel system.  

What Institute support is available? 

The Institute will be in touch with you throughout your fellowship, and will be on hand to support you with any queries or issues. The Institute Director and Program Manager will meet with all fellows as a group before their fellowships start, mid-way through the fellowship period, and toward the end of the fellowship period.