Spring 2024 • Clinic
International Human Rights Clinic
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Enrollment in this clinic will fulfill the HLS JD pro bono requirement.
Required Class Component: Students in the spring clinic must enroll in either Human Rights Advocacy or Armed Conflict and Humanitarian Protection (both 2 spring classroom credits). Students who enroll in the spring clinic will be enrolled in one of the required courses by the Office of Clinical and Pro Bono Programs. Students are guaranteed a seat in one of these two required courses, but are not guaranteed their first choice. Students may enroll in only one of the two available courses.
Additional Co-/Pre-Requisites: None.
By Permission: No.
Add/Drop Deadline: December 8, 2023.
LLM Students: LLM students may apply to the clinic through the LLM General Clinic Application.
Placement Site: HLS.
The International Human Rights Clinic (IHRC) seeks to advance the protection and realization of human rights around the world while training the next generation of advocates. The Clinic serves as partner and legal advisor to a wide range of human rights and civil rights organizations in the United States and globally. Working on small project teams under the close supervision of expert clinicians, students take the lead on lawyering and advocating for human rights across a range of thematic and geographic areas, using a variety of skills that reflect the diverse modes of human rights practice. Students are involved in all aspects of their projects, from conceptualizing goals and formulating strategies, to researching and drafting reports, treaties, and legal briefs, to interviewing witnesses, to presenting findings before courts and international bodies. Students will be exposed to multiple strategies and innovative techniques for promoting and protecting human rights, and will also critically reflect on their work and the human rights movement more broadly.
IHRC’s docket draws on clinicians’ established expertise and networks in six broad areas, while remaining dynamic and responsive to emerging needs and the evolving field. Our primary areas of work are: (1) accountability and remedies; (2) armed conflict & civilian protection; (3) climate justice & the environment; (4) gender, race & non-discrimination; (5) protecting fundamental freedoms; and (6) social & economic justice.
Spring clinic students must take an accompanying clinical seminar (2 classroom credits). The seminars teach the skills and methods of human rights practitioners through case studies, workshopping of clinical projects, and simulations related to fact-finding and field investigations, media work, and/or negotiation and legislative work. Clinical seminar selection and enrollment occurs once a student has enrolled in the clinic and is orchestrated by the Office of Clinical and Pro Bono Programs.