Columbia Law School Human Rights Institute
1L Advocates Program
The Human Rights Institute (HRI) is the hub of human rights at Columbia Law School, and is launching a new human rights program in the 2017-2018 academic year for first year law students interested in pursuing a career in human rights law: The Human Rights Institute 1L Advocates Program. For students who would like a career in human rights, this program will provide the structure, support, and skills necessary to work toward that goal during your 1L year.
The program involves:
Human rights mentoring and community: 1L HRI Advocates will receive tailored human rights mentorship and guidance from Columbia Law School graduates and 2L and 3L students, and join a community of human rights advocates. As 2Ls and 3Ls, HRI Student Advocates will be expected to contribute to the continued organization of the program through mentoring of new 1Ls.
Specialized human rights seminars: 1L Advocates will attend introductory seminars on the field of human rights, given by HRI faculty and staff and other experts. There are five seminars in the Fall, and additional seminars in the Spring. Fall seminars will provide an overview of the types of work undertaken in the human rights field, and spring seminars will focus on human rights skills.
Working on real human rights cases and project: 1L Advocates have the opportunity to work on HRI and Human Rights Clinic projects. Acceptance to the program also requires a commitment to undertake public interest work during the year.
Visits to human rights NGOs in New York: 1L Advocates will have the opportunity to visit NGOs in New York city, meet with staff, and learn more about careers.
The program begins in the fall with welcome and orientation events for the accepted 1L Advocates, continues throughout the academic year with seminars on human rights and opportunities to engage with human rights research, and concludes in the spring with a farewell dinner in April. The 1L curriculum is a demanding experience, and the 1L HRI program was designed with this reality in mind.