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Human Rights Fellowship

Columbia Law School’s Human Rights LL.M. Fellowship supports individuals with extraordinary potential in—and commitment to—the field of international human rights.

Become an innovator and leader in human rights practice and/or academia with the help of the Human Rights LL.M. Fellowship.

The Human Rights LL.M. Fellowship is jointly managed by Columbia Law School’s Human Rights Institute (the focal point of human rights work, education, critical reflection, and scholarship at the Law School) and the Office of Graduate Legal Studies (which manages the Law School’s LL.M. and J.S.D. Programs). 

Benefits include:

  • Receive tailored career mentoring and skill development in both practice and academic scholarship from Human Rights Institute faculty, staff, and advisers.
  • Attend special events with leading human rights advocates and scholars.
  • Participate in the Human Rights Institute’s cutting-edge research projects.
  • Receive special consideration for admission to Columbia’s Human Rights Clinic—an innovative course that teaches students to be strategic and creative human rights advocates while pursuing social justice and advancing human rights methodologies and scholarship.

Fellows are expected to devote a significant part of their studies to human rights and play an active role in the Law School’s vibrant human rights community.

Note: Fellowships offer partial to full waivers of tuition and, in some cases, a living stipend depending on the applicant’s demonstrated level of financial need. 

Eligibility Requirements

Fellowship awardees must first be admitted to the LL.M. Program at Columbia Law School. For more information, visit the LL.M. Application Process and Frequently Asked Questions pages.

Applicants must demonstrate experience in international human rights work and a commitment to a career in academia and/or human rights practice. 

Candidates from Africa, Asia, and Latin America, as well as candidates who face impediments in pursuing their education or leadership roles because of race, ethnicity, religion, socioeconomic background, gender, sexual orientation, or any other reason, are strongly encouraged to apply.

How to Apply

The application deadline for the 2020–2021 Human Rights Fellowship is December 18, 2020 (the same deadline as the application for the LL.M. Program).

Submit a completed application for admission to the LL.M. Program through LSAC, including your résumé/CV.

The application must include:

  • A one- to two-page essay describing your qualifications for the fellowship. You should discuss your current and previous human rights work, interest in and commitment to the field, career goals, and human rights vision. Upload the essay to the Human Rights LL.M. Fellowship section.
  • Letters of recommendation that speak to your prior work and future potential as a human rights advocate, scholar, and/or practitioner. The two letters of recommendation submitted for the LL.M. application may also be used for the fellowship if they comment on your human rights work, commitment, and future plans. If they do not, you may submit a third letter of recommendation through the LSAC online application from a professor or human rights practitioner.
  • The Application for Financial Assistance. This helps the selection committee determine the appropriate level of assistance to provide to each fellow and maximize the number of fellowships it can award each year.

 

Office of Graduate Legal Studies

We provide individual support to each LL.M. and J.S.D. student throughout every step of their Law School experience, from application to degree conferral, and we keep in close touch with our broad network of alumni.