Traineeships at the General Secretariat of the Council

General Secretariat


For more information you can contact the traineeships office:

Different types of traineeship

1. Paid traineeships

The General Secretariat of the Council (GSC) offers around 100 paid traineeships a year to EU nationals who, by the deadline for submitting applications, have completed at least the first part of their university studies and have a degree certificate or equivalent.

Traineeships are split into 2 different periods, each lasting 5 months:

  • 1 February to 30 June (first period)
  • 1 September to 31 January (second period)

2. Compulsory unpaid traineeships

The GSC offers around 20 unpaid traineeships per year. These traineeships are for third, fourth or fifth year university students who have to do a compulsory training period as part of their course.

Traineeships are split into 2 different periods, each lasting from 1 to 5 months:

  • 1 February to 30 June
  • 1 September to 31 January

3. Traineeships for national officials

This programme is intended for officials from ministries, government or regional agencies and the diplomatic corps of the EU member states or of a candidate country.

National officials who do a traineeship with the GSC are employed and paid by their national administration.

Who can apply?


GSC traineeships are open to:

  • EU citizens
  • citizens from candidate countries that have concluded EU accession negotiations

For paid traineeships, applicants must have recently graduated from a university or equivalent higher-education establishment and have a degree certificate or equivalent.


Given that French and English are used extensively for internal communication within the GSC, a good knowledge of French or English and the ability to communicate in one of these languages is required.


The majority of applications currently come from candidates with qualifications in law, political science, international relations, EU studies and economics.

The GSC is also looking for trainees with qualifications in other fields, such as:

translation, human resources, communication, education studies, computer sciences, graphic design, multimedia, agricultural technology, biochemical engineering, health and food safety, energy management, environment, aerospace engineering.

Who can't apply?

Applications from people who have already received more than 8 weeks' in-service training  (paid or unpaid) in any of the EU institutions or bodies will not be accepted.

Complaints procedure

We strive to offer the highest standards of service.

However, if you think that you have been subject to maladministration, you have the right to introduce a complaint to the European Ombudsman. Please note that before the Ombudsman can accept a complaint from you, you need to first raise your concerns with the Traineeship Office.

You can contact us by email.