McMaster University Student Traineeship (MUST) Programme at UNU-INWEH
The MUST programme at United Nations University Institute for Water, Environment and Health (UNU-INWEH) is all set to provide a platform for McMaster University Students from all faculties and departments, a placement under its new capacity building programme.
Vision: To help promote young professionals and scholars from McMaster University to shape a sustainable and water secure world.
How will we do that?
This programme is specially designed for McMaster University Students from all faculties and departments, to provide them an opportunity for strengthening their skills in project management and science-policy bridging activities in the water sector, to working across disciplinary boundaries and to break sectoral knowledge silos to develop innovative solutions to pressing problems in the water sector.
We will provide a platform to enable exchanges among young professionals in the UNU networks and beyond, facilitate access to project management experience and professional opportunities, tailor capacity strengthening programmes and activities for each scholar, and provide engagement opportunities for on policy debates.
The uniqueness of the MUST programme lies in its mission: to seed the dream of ‘future water leaders’ in McMaster University students through traineeship and mentorship, to equip young professionals with the skills and competencies that will allow them to build their own future and career in the water sector, and to create skilled professionals who are prepared to face complex and systemic challenges in the sector while facilitating to minimize the environmental impact through generation of new data, information and knowledge.
The programme is also suited for students engaged with the Water Without Border (WWB) programme ( link), to work with UNU-INWEH staff members and projects on a specific activity or research objectives.
Some relevant points related to the programme:
• The programme is open for undergraduate scholars to more advanced researchers
• Your term for MUST placement as agreed with your supervisor at UNU-INWEH with a total commitment of minimum 100 hours in the agreed tenure.
• All costs pertaining to your participation in this programme will be borne by yourself or your respective sponsoring organisation- we do not charge any fee for this programme
• The expression of interest should be discussed with the programme coordinator (Dr Nidhi Nagabhatla) by sending an email to Contact.INWEH@unu.edu with MUST in the subject line
• Send a short (2-3 page) CV that outlines your motivation to associate with us in no more than 3- points as a section in the CV
There are no more advertised vacancies. Open applications are welcomed.
Current and Past MUST Scholars
Spencer Williams (2018)
Gloria Ko (2018)
Yina Shan (2018)
Negar Ghasemi (2018)
My experience in the MUST Programme at UNU-INWEH was an excellent opportunity to engage in and improve my understanding of global water issues. I found it very rewarding to be able to contribute to meaningful research and policy development and to be welcomed as a valued member of the organisation. It was a privilege to work alongside a diverse group of researchers seeking to better understand our most precious resource.
The MUST Programme was one of the most enriching academic experiences I’ve had in my undergrad. As my first step into research, I summarized the holistic approach of using nature-based solutions and grew my technical skills by analyzing flagship and bibliometric data from countries and universities worldwide regarding water security and transferred this to a statistical software called Tableau. I am beyond grateful for this opportunity to learn how the SDG 6 is a collaborative process and working with individuals on a global scale. I would highly recommend this programme due to the immense support and guidance I received from my supervisors Dr.Nidhi Nagabhalta and Dr.Hamid Mehmood that made this a very accessible learning environment.
UNU-INWEH offered a learning environment that was both stimulating and supportive. During my time here as a McMaster University scholar, I gained unique insights and transferable research skills while contributing to projects impacting global sustainable development. As someone who had minimal technical knowledge beforehand, I always felt welcome to pose questions and to take risks. Beyond the work itself, the opportunity to engage with scholars from diverse backgrounds and to work in an institution that drives sustainable development is unmatched.
During my placement with the MUST program at UNU INWEH, I had the opportunity to work on various projects including water quality in Indigenous communities, international water investments and fisheries and sustainable aquaculture. In this role, I was able to refine my research skills by performing numerous literature searches in order to compile science-based evidence from policy briefs and past UN assessment reports. I was also able to strengthen my research and critical thinking skills through conducting data analysis and reading academic papers as I identified at-risk regions for policy recommendations and analyzed current and past federal budgets for better resource allocation. I believe that this experience allowed me to demonstrate my self-directed learning, time management, and professionalism, as well as environmental and health advocacy abilities.