Call for Applications

The 2018 Fellowship will run from January 26 to April 27, 2018. Fellows in this program will participate in substantial, policy-based and administrative work in the office of a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) or a Brussels-based NGO. Fellows will also spend one day a week attending a curated selection of seminars, lectures and site visits led by leading policy experts and practitioners who will introduce them to a variety of topics concerning contemporary politics in Europe. These lectures and site visits also help Fellows expand their professional networks and build important workplace skills.

About the Fellowship

About the Fellowship

The Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellowship will run for three months at the European Parliament and with Brussels-based NGOs. Fellows will spend four days per week in the office of a MEP or a Brussels-based NGO and one day per week attending lectures and group site visits with others in the program.

Participants will include Humanity in Action Senior Fellows, as well as students and recent graduates of University College Cork who are interested in human rights and minority rights. Participants are selected through a competitive application process. By the end of the fellowship, the participants gain valuable insights into the workings of the European Union, ranging from routine office tasks to the intricacies of Brussels’ decision-making processes.

Pat Cox Fellows also visit key institutions in Brussels and participate in regular seminars. The weekly lecture series brings all of the Pat Cox Fellows together to create a platform for intellectual exchange.

Program Dates

The program will run from January 26 to April 27, 2018.

Who Can Apply?

The Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellowship is available to all Humanity in Action Fellows and Senior Fellows, as well as students and recent graduates of University College Cork who are interested in human rights and minority rights. If you are not a citizen of the EU, you will be responsible for obtaining your own visas, but Humanity in Action will provide assistance and guidance.

Work Responsibilities

The Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellowship is composed of two different parts including an internship in the office of an MEP or a Brussels-based NGO and a weekly seminar. 

Internship with a Member of the European Parliament (MEP)

Fellows will spend four days per week in the office of an MEP. Fellows generally work closely with an MEP's Assistant. The work primarily consists of everyday operations of an MEP’s office, such as: 

  • Answering the phone and opening mail
  • Working closely with the MEP’s Assistant and his or her office in their home district
  • Attending political meetings in Parliamentary Committees
  • Writing minutes 
  • Working on ad hoc projects, such as drafting memos or conducting a small research project of interest to your MEP 

Traveling to Strasbourg for a parliamentary session with an MEP may be possible but is not guaranteed.

Some Fellows may be placed with Brussels-based NGOs. Fellows working with an organization can expect to receive similar responsibilities and workload as those placed in MEP offices.

Weekly Seminars and Site Visits

Every Friday, participants will attend a slate of lectures and site visits. Fellows will learn about the institutional infrastructure of lobbying organizations, NGOs, research institutions and consulting bodies in the area of human/minority rights and international relations. They will also visit key institutions in Brussels and participate in seminars. The Friday lecture series will bring together all Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellows to create a platform for intellectual exchange amongst peers. 

The fellowship will conclude with a final event often attended by Pat Cox and leading MEPs.

Internship Placements in 2017

In 2017, the Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellows worked in the offices of the following MEPs and NGOs:

  • MEP Kati Piri (Netherlands)
  • MEP Renate Weber (Romania)
  • MEP Nirj Deva (United Kingdom)
  • MEP Norica Nicolai (Romania)
  • MEP Eduard Kukan (Slovakia)
  • Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom (Germany)
  • International Partnership for Human Rights (Belgium) 

Application Requirements

The Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellowship in the European Parliament is open to all Fellows and Senior Fellows from all countries and students or recent graduates of University College Cork.

All applications must be received by the application deadline to be considered.

The deadline for applications for the 2018 Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellowship is August 17, 2017.

Not a Humanity in Action Fellow, Senior Fellow or a University College Cork Student or Recent Graduate?

We invite you to apply for the 2018 Humanity in Action Fellowship when applications become available this fall. Please visit the fellowship page for more details.

Selection Procedure

Application decisions will be made by Humanity in Action staff, in consultation with selected MEPs and Assistants at the European Parliament. Applicants will participate in a Skype or in-person interview with Humanity in Action staff member or Senior Fellow. Applicants may also participate in a Skype or in-person interview with an MEP of NGO office at a later date. 

Please note that every office is unique and we try to place Fellows according to their field of expertise and interest. Additional characteristics that make a successful candidate and Fellow include: good language skills, an interest in EU politics and a willingness to learn.

By the end of October, successful applicants will receive their acceptance letters (either with a definitive placement or a placement to be confirmed). At this point, Humanity in Action requests that applicants commit to participating in the Fellowship.

The 2018 Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellowship cohort will be announced by mid-to-late November.

Although efforts will be made to match applicants' interests and skills, Humanity in Action cannot guarantee a placement with a particular MEP.

Pat Cox: Former President of the European Parliament

Pat Cox was President of the European Parliament from 2002 to 2004. He has been a Member of the European Parliament since 1989, representing the constituency of Munster in the Republic of Ireland. Before entering politics, he worked both as an economics lecturer and as a journalist and TV presenter. In 1998, he was first elected President of the European Liberal Democrat Group. He was unanimously re-elected in June 1999. In 2005, Pat Cox was elected as the new president of the European Movement International.