International Human Rights Clinic

The International Human Rights Clinic provides students with an opportunity to critically engage with human rights issues, strategies, tactics, institutions, and law in both domestic and international settings. Through the weekly seminar and fieldwork, students will develop practical tools for human rights advocacy—such as fact-finding, litigation, indicators, reporting, and messaging—that integrate inter-disciplinary methods and maximize the use of new technologies. Students will also develop core competencies related to managing trauma in human rights work, as well as the ethical and accountability challenges in human rights lawyering. Types of clinic projects include those that: apply a human rights framework to domestic issues; involve human rights advocacy abroad; engage with international institutions to advance human rights; and/or address human rights in U.S. foreign policy. Students work closely with local organizations, international NGOs, and U.N. human rights experts and bodies. Some travel will likely be involved. Student project teams will also meet at least once a week with the clinic instructor. Students work on clinic projects approximately 10-12 hours a week, for a minimum of 125 hours of clinical work during the semester. Students must be at least in their second semester, second year to take this clinic. This course may not be dropped after the first class meeting.

Enrollment Prerequisite

J.D. students are required to have instruction in the Model Rules of Professional Conduct prior, or during, enrollment in the International Human Rights Clinic.

Clinics Enrollment Policy

Ethics and Graduation Requirement. The legal ethics graduation requirement is a pre- or co-requisite to enroll in several of the clinics (see below for list of the clinics that do not have this requirement). Where required, a student may fulfill this by completing an ethics class that satisfies the legal ethics graduation requirement. Those classes include:

  • Ethics of Social Justice Lawyering (LAW 237)
  • Ethics & the Law of Lawyering (LAW 238)
  • Ethics and the Law of Lawyering in Civil Litigation (LAW 239)
  • Criminal Justice Ethics (LAW 317)
  • Ethics in Action (LAW 539), and
  • Any other class identified as fulfilling the ethics & professionalism graduation requirement in a particular semester.

J.D. students are also required to have taken International Human Rights Advocacy, as either a pre-requisite or co-requisite.

These prerequisites do not apply to LL.M. students. Instructor permission is required for enrollment of LL.M. students.

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Past Sections