GSO internship opportunities

CAPI intern Luisa Schwarz at KSDC with students and fellow teachers
UVic Geography and Enivronmental Studies student Luisa Schwarz during her 2019 CAPI internship, pictured with her students and fellow teachers of the Karenni Social Development Center school.


The Global Skills Opportunity (GSO) Program is Canada’s new outbound student mobility program. GSO is funded by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) and administered through Universities Canada.

GSO seeks to provide Canadian post-secondary students with international study and work experiences to obtain the skills and training needed to participate in a changing labour market.

GSO objectives:

  • Widen access and equity to participation in outbound student mobility programming
  • Diversify the destination countries where students choose to study and work abroad
  • Test innovative approaches to reduce barriers to study/work abroad

These internships represent a unique opportunity for work-integrated learning, experiential learning, the development of cross-cultural understanding and to gain some of the skills and training needed to be successful graduates and global citizens. Interns will gain first-hand experience with grassroots community engagement, policy development, education, advocacy and participatory research in the global south.

In the past, CAPI interns have been involved in:

  • Conducting field research with local communities.
  • Contributing to on-going projects and workshops.
  • Preparing for and/or attending national, regional and international conferences.
  • Teaching and program facilitation.
  • Writing grant proposals.

Participants will also share their experiences and contribute to the community of CAPI interns and fellow GSO participants through community engagement activities including capstone projects, critical reflections, narrative reports and blogging.


Applicants to CAPI's GSO internships must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • 18 or older at the time of application,
  • a third or fourth-year undergraduate student and registered as a full-time student at the University of Victoria during the term of application,
  • a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, and
  • available to complete the specified overseas placement. Dates to be determined on a placement-to-placement basis in consultation with the partner organizations.

Priority for these positions will be given to students who are typically underrepresented in outbound mobility programming. These include and are defined by the program funders as:

  • Low-income students: students who report to be in receipt of Canada Student Grants, or similar non-repayable student financial assistance offered by provinces or territories, or, in the absence of receiving non-repayable student financial assistance, can provide information to demonstrate that the require financial support to study or work abroad.
  • Indigenous students: students who report being an Indigenous person, that is First Nations, Metis, Inuk (Inuit) or other.
  • Students with disabilities. Students who report to have a difficulty or impairment due to a long-term condition or health program and/or experiences a limitation in their daily activities.

Interns will also be required to:

  • Attend a 5-day in-person pre-departure training and orientation at UVic from 24-28 April 2023
  • Post 5 blogs to the CAPI website,
  • Complete all reporting requirements set by CAPI and the program funders including pre-departure, critical reflections, narrative reports and a Capstone project,
  • Act as a mentor for future interns and scholars.


Interns funded through the GSO program will receive up to $8,000 CAD to cover international air travel from Victoria to the intern’s placement country and living expenses while in placement (local travel, rent, utilities, food, etc.). Sessions on budgeting and financial management will be included in pre-departure training.


Center for Indonesian Policy Studies, Jakarta, Indonesia (2 placements)

  • Check out blog posts from past interns at the Center for Indonesian Policy Studies (CIPS)
  • Check out a video of 2019 CIPS intern Jemma Kosalko


The Center for Indonesian Policy Studies (CIPS) is a Jakarta based think tank dedicated to providing policy analysis and practical policy recommendations to decision-makers within Indonesia’s legislative and executive branches of government.

As a non-partisan and non-profit think tank, CIPS promotes social and economic reforms that are based on the belief that only civil, political, and economic freedom allow Indonesia to prosper. CIPS shares updates, stories, and analysis internationally. The primary aim of the organization is to promote international dialogue and to encourage comparative research of key issues concerning Indonesia. Main research focus at CIPS includes the fields of Food Security & Agriculture, Economic Opportunities, Education & Life Skills, and Community Livelihoods.

Moreover, CIPS works to train new Indonesian talent in policy analysis and think tank management. With this, they endeavour to support the next generation of think tank leaders who promote a free and prosperous Indonesia.

CIPS has been hosting more than 20 local and international interns since the program started back in January 2016. Our former interns are now working at local media outlets, international embassies, research centers and other prestigious institutions. We are always fascinated to be inspired and to inspire young people to contribute to Indonesia’s economic and political development.nk">Anti-Trafficking Review. While member organisations work with women, children, men and gender-diverse people, GAATW-IS has always focussed on the rights of adult women in the context of labour migration.

Position description:

Our main objective for the internship program is to introduce to young people how a think tank works, especially in local context. The program itself will provide full experience of a think tank, start from the operational side, research, also on communications and outreach advocacy. The selected intern will be involved in programming areas such as:

  • Conducting and compiling literature-based research on issues related to CIPS key focus areas.
  • Working with tools to compile and complete data entry.
  • Developing and implementing communications strategies for various works of policy advocacy.
  • Identifying best practices of key messaging based on different audience groups for media and fundraising.
  • Creating content on different social media platforms and supporting platform maintenance.
  • Administering and supporting think tank operations.
  • Producing infographics and other data packages for use in CIPS meetings, advocacy work and media outreach.
  • Assisting and help out CIPS programs and events such as workshops and research paper discussions.
  • Collaborating with staff and other interns on projects and tasks as well as participation in team-oriented discussions.

Position-specific eligibility:

In addition to the core eligibility criteria for the CAPI GSO program (see above), prospective interns must possess the following:

  • Strong writing, research and analytical skills;
  • Good communication skills, including listening, report writing, and editing documents with sensitivity to cultural differences;
  • Excellent organizational, multi-tasking, and project-management skills;
  • Knowledge and/or interest in Indonesian public policy an asset

Karenni Social Development Center (1 placement)

  • Check out blog posts from past interns at the Karenni Social Development Center (KSDC)
  • Check out videos of KSDC


The Karenni Social Development Center (KSDC) is a civil society organization in Mae Hong Son, Thailand, established in 2002 by graduates of the EarthRights School Burma. The vision of the Center is to promote the lives of the Karenni people who have suffered human rights abuses, promote non-violent efforts to build a new society, develop the rule of law, and protect the environment. CAPI will be sending one UVic student to KSDC in 2022.

Program objectives

The intern selected will be involved in teaching KDSC’s Advanced Community Training Course. The Advanced Community Training Course is a six-month course specifically aimed at equipping KSDC students with the skills needed to become advocates and activists for the Karenni people as they strive towards a free and democratic future.

The subjects and teaching are practical and provide the skills for grassroots change. The students speak English at an intermediate level, meaning subjects should be provided in simple English. The students will have already taken a ten-month basic course in English and will have an elementary grasp of legal aspects related to the rule of law, constitutional law and refugees. This position would include programming areas such as:

  • teaching English, social justice, movement building and legal subjects: 4 hours daily for 10 – 12 students
  • teaching courses related to advocacy and community engagement (such as campaigning and lobbying, legal advocacy, community organising, etc.)
  • facilitating workshops on consultations, project planning, report writing, office management, proposal writing

Partner organization:

The Karenni Social Development Center is a small community-based organization located on the Thai-Myanmar Border. KSDC runs training programs for Karenni youth in Human Rights, Democracy, Law, Environment, Community Management, IT, and English. KSDC students go on to work with organisations in the community, including the Karenni Refugee Committee, Camp Justice, Karenni National Women’s Organisation (KNOW) and the Legal Assistance Center. KSDC also runs mobile trainings inside Karenni State aimed at promoting grassroots change. The KSDC's training program aims to spread knowledge and skills regarding human rights, environment and law on the Thai-Burma border.

Students at the Karenni Social Development Center are refugees from Karenni (Kayah) State, Burma. These students have been severely marginalized by the violence of the Burmese regime and the ongoing civil war, now running for over 60 years. The school provides students with the education and opportunity to produce non-violent change within their communities and create a free and democratic society within Karenni State.

 Living and working at the school:

As an intern you will be expected to live and work alongside the students and staff of the KSDC. The students board at the school during the week and they are responsible for the basic daily running of the school. They cook three rice-based meals a day, and have a daily rota for the chores. Living and working together with the students creates a strong sense of togetherness and community which makes for a good teaching atmosphere. It also makes it easier to get to know everyone.

The washing facilities are very basic. There is no running or hot water; however, there are two community basins filled with river water where students and teachers bathe and do laundry. There is also a private area for bathing.

There are three tiny family shops around the school, as well as many local shops in Nai Soi village nearby. The nearest large town is Mae Hong Son (where interns will initially arrive) which is 20 km away and is easily reached by Songthaew (bus like public transport) or motorbike. Mae Hong Son is a tourist destination so has all modern conveniences available.

Life is very simple at the school in terms of facilities, but it's very rewarding and engaging. Interns will have the opportunity to be part of the school's close-knit community.

Prospective interns should have:

  • an interest in mobility and legal issues surrounding mobility
  • a strong work ethic and willingness to learn
  • teaching experience or a strong interest in working with youth
  • knowledge or interest in the following subjects would be desirable, but not necessary:
    • campaigning and lobbying (legal advocacy), community organising, advocacy, project planning, report writing, office management, proposal writing
    • experience teaching English
    • legal issues relating to indigenous people, grassroots change and/ or international legal instruments available to marginalized people would be considered an asset.


Center for Orang Asli Concerns, Malaysia (1 placement)

The Center for Orang Asli Concerns (COAC) was founded in 1989 to assist the Orang Asli – the indigenous minority peoples of Peninsular Malaysia – in their advocacy work towards recognition of their rights, including the right to their customary lands. In this regard, COAC has been directly involved in nine land rights cases that were successfully decided in the Orang Asli’s favour, adding important legal precedents to our legal system.

COAC’s strength has also been in research and policy reform on Orang Asli and indigenous matters. In recognition of this, COAC received the United Nations Malaysia Organization of the Year Award in 2011. COAC, in fact, remains the go-to organization for information, consultation and reflection on indigenous matters in Peninsular Malaysia.

In recent years also, COAC has been involved in capacity-building and empowerment development of the Orang Asli, usually through direct training or through community-led projects. These include the establishment of community learning centers, and the initiation and development of economic livelihood and health projects.

COAC is happy to welcome interested, open minded and committed individuals to join our research and community-based activities. With this, we endeavor to support intercultural relationships and networks which will contribute to more open and just communities.

Penampang DAP Service Centre, Malaysia (1 placement)

Penampang DAP Service Centre serves the residents in Penampang, but more specifically in Kapayan. The focus of services are on information dissemination through online/printed media and social media; organizing communities and facilitating activities on the environment, culture, women and youth; and providing aid to individuals (disabled, elderly, poor) and community in needs. Penampang DAP Service Centre is happy to welcome interested, open minded and committed individuals to join our research and activities. With this, we endeavor to support intercultural relationships and networks which will contribute to more open and just communities.

The Service Centre focuses on programmes such as environment (community recycling, upcycling, composting, community work etc), culture & identity, women empowerment, youth development and social services.


Applicants must submit the following documents:

  • A completed application form
  • An up-to-date resume (2 pages maximum)
  • University transcripts (unofficial copies are acceptable)

Applicants must also identify how they will connect this internship with their academic work to receive credit. Options include:

  1. a relevant course completed during the term of application,
  2. a relevant course completed during the internship period,
  3. a directed reading/ honor's thesis, or
  4. a CO-OP work term.

Potential internship-credit pairings must be communicated in the application and need to be approved by the program manager before you begin your internship placement. If you have further questions concerning your eligibility, please do not hesitate to contact Robyn Fila by email (

Complete application packages MUST BE submitted by email to Robyn Fila at by 10 February 2023 - 4 pm PST. Late and/or incomplete applications will not be accepted.

Applications should be saved as “your name - description of the document” (e.g. “Your Name - transcript”). All attachments should be in PDF format only.

We thank everyone for their applications and interest in the CAPI internship program. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted to set up an interview time in late February 2023.



Global Skills Opportunities program logoThis project is funded by Global Skills Opportunity (GSO), the Government of Canada's outbound mobility pilot program.