The World Federation of Public Health Associations offers unpaid internships in the International Office in Geneva, Switzerland. 

WFPHA offers a unique environment for an internship for students in international health and development. Interns are given substantial responsibility for performing activities such as researching and writing articles for the newsletter, establishing contact with health and development NGOs around the world, planning international conferences, and fundraising. Each internship is structured to suit the needs and interests of the intern, such as working on an individual research assignment, as well as the requirements of WFPHA. Interns may have the opportunity to participate in the formulation of WFPHA policy resolutions or papers, depending on circumstances.

During the course of the internship, the intern will further develop his/her writing and research skills and become more familiar with the key issues and actors in international health and development. They will have extensive networking opportunities as WFPHA is an international NGO in official relations with WHO, and has extensive contacts with other organizations worldwide. No travel opportunities will be provided.

General Guide for Interns in Geneva


Internships are offered to current graduate students with strong academic backgrounds and an interest in global public health.  Applicants should possess strong writing and research skills. In addition, applicants should be able to work fairly independently and ideally be knowledgeable about the major issues in the field of global health.


Opportunities for internships are available year round and can be developed for a 3-4 month period, an academic semester, or a full year.  


WFPHA internships are unpaid.  The organization does not cover re-location expenses and does not sponsor international student visas.

How to Apply

If you are interested in applying for an internship, please send your CV and motivation letter, specifying your availability, to E. De Cata.

Current WFPHA Interns

Kathryn Bonhamkathrynkathryn

My name is Kathryn Bonham and I am interning at WFPHA working on Policy, Advocacy and communications. I am originally from England where I studied a BSc in Psychologybefore working for three years in Public Health promotion, project coordination and management with the British and French Red Cross. I gained an International MSc in Public Health Nutrition from the University of Montpellier in France and the University of Basilicata in Italy. Here I worked and studied a range of aspects of Public Health Nutrition including linkages with Sustainable Agriculture, Organic Agriculture and the economics of Sustainable Agriculture. I have worked in Europe, Latin America and Asia on different Public Health projects, focusing on project coordination, advocacy and communications. I previously worked in Geneva as an intern with the United Nations and have been back in Geneva for a short while now. I was excited and eager to start an internship with WFPHA as I am continuously passionate about Public Health on an International scale and working in Public Health promotion. It is great to be back in Geneva and working for a global and necessary cause.


Shannon Papalia

shannon websiteshannon website

My name is Shannon Papalia. This past December 2018 I graduated from the University of Connecticut in the United States with a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health and Health Promotion. I first became interested in Public Health through volunteer opportunities in different cities in the U.S. focusing on issues such as rural poverty, health care access, health disparities and harm reduction services. The past two summers I have volunteered as a Health Fellow for an NGO called One Heart Source in Cape Town, SA where I taught middle school students subjects of biology, chemistry, and HIV/AIDS, volunteered at local health clinics, and worked as a leader for other volunteers. This organization inspired me to gain interest in global health, epidemics, and health education. Through these experiences, I have learned the importance of breaking global health misconceptions and educating the public on disease prevention. As I am passionate about promoting health access for all, I am grateful for this opportunity to intern at WFPHA in order to learn more about the global health field and their efforts to promote global health and the right to health.  


Photo GemmaPhoto Gemma

Gemma Bridge

My name is Gemma Bridge. I am PhD student at Leeds Beckett University in the UK. In my thesis I am investigating the use of corporate political activity (CPA) tactics and non-government organisation (NGO) advocacy strategies during the development of the UK’s Soft Drink industry Levy (SDIL). I am also interested in how the soft drink industry has responded to the SDIL in terms of reformulation, marketing and product size changes of sugar sweetened beverages (SSBs), and what purchase and consumption changes have occurred in the general public.
 In September I started an internship with the WFPHA oral health working group. In this role I am investigating the global spread of soft drink taxes, and how revenue from the taxes is being used. I am currently in the process of identifying key contacts in each country where a tax has been implemented and hope to develop a repository of information on the use of tax revenue. During this internship I am also interested in advocating for the use of tax revenue for oral health improvement, especially in minority groups where overall health is typically poorer.
 Since starting my internship I have already learnt a lot about the complexities of policy development, public health promotion and communication between countries. I am looking forward to delving deeper into international health policy and the methods and techniques that can be employed to improve population oral and overall health.


Maria Vittoria Terni

Photo Maria VittoriaPhoto Maria Vittoria


My name is Maria Vittoria Terni, I am a second-year student at the Master of Science in Economics and Management of Government and International Organizations at Bocconi University, in Milan, where I also got my Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Management. During my academic career I had the occasion to take experiences abroad, particularly I went to Chile and India. Both these experiences allow me to raise my awareness of the inequalities that still are present in the world and a deep passion for developing countries started growing inside me. I have just finished an internship at Project for People Onlus, an international cooperation NGO settled in Milan that works in India, Benin and Brazil. We worked together on the big problem of malnutrition among children in Benin, and we designed a project for the prevention of the same with the cooperation of a local NGO. In that moment, I understood that the issue of Global Health was becoming very important to me. When I discovered the occasion to become an intern at the WFPHA, I decided to apply immediately. WFPHA represents to me the opportunity to extend my knowledge in Global Health and to take part at the advocacy activities to reach a better healthcare system in low-income countries. This adventure with the WFPHA has just started and I am the new member of the interns’ team, but I can not wait to see the developments of my contribution at the WFPHA!

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