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6 Top Human Rights Summer Schools 2017


The Genocide and Human Rights University Program, Canada

The Genocide and Human Rights University Program (GHRUP) is a two-week graduate-level course at the University of Toronto, Canada. Held from July 31st – August 11th 2017, GHRUP offers a comparative and interdisciplinary analysis of cases of genocide, including the Holocaust, the Cambodian Genocide, and the Rwandan Genocide among others, using the Armenian Genocide as a point of reference.

Taught by 12 leading experts in their fields, this course incorporates genocide theory, history, sociology, political science, anthropology, psychology, and international law. Using a seminar approach, GHRUP provides a structured forum for analyzing universal questions relating to genocide and human rights, including the background, sources, causes and effects of genocide; the social, economic and psychological impact on survivors and their descendants; and the gendered dimensions of genocide.

Summer School on Human Rights Law at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy

The European University Institute in Florence, Italy, offers a summer school program on human rights law, which will take place from the June 19 to June 30, 2017. The courses are meant for higher-level educated students of law and other related fields, and are also suitable for lawyers, specialists, professors, researchers, and practitioners. There will be a general course on human rights and experimentalist governance as well as several specialized courses, which are Human Rights and Global Corporate and Contract Governance, The Right to Food and Global Governance, Human Rights and the Governance of Sovereign Debt Crises, Human Rights and the Global Governance of Armed Conflict: Law, Human Rights and Ethics in the New Wars, and Human Rights and the Governance of Global Governance Institutions. Participants who have attended all the classes will receive a certificate of attendance. It is also possible to take an examination on the last day of the Summer School, which will give the participant a Diploma if they successfully pass the exam.

In order to be eligible to apply, you need to have completed a 3-year law degree or at least 4 years of studies at university-level which included at least a few courses on international law or European Union law. The summer school is open to every nationality. English knowledge on at least a B2-level is recommended, since the course is given in English, but a language certificate is not required. The deadline for applications is 3th of April 2016. You can apply to the course by filling in the online application form, which can be found here.

Accommodation will not be provided by the EUI, but the university does provide helpful information with regards to housing, which can be found here. Medical insurance is also not provided, and the university advises participants to get international medical insurance before travelling to Florence. The fee for the course is €700, which includes literature, tuition, lunches and social activities planned by the University.

The International Summer School (ISS) at the University of Oslo, Norway

From June 24 until August 4, 2017, the University of Oslo offers a Summer School. The Summer School does not have a set program, instead participants are asked to apply for either two Bachelor courses, or one Master’s course. The Bachelor courses which are interesting for people who want a career in human rights are Gender Equality in the Nordic Countries, the Norwegian Welfare State and Scandinavian Government & Politics. The Master’s courses that are offered are International Development Studies, Peace Research, Gender Equality in the Nordic Countries, and Human Rights. The Summer School is open to everyone, and participants do not need to be currently studying to be eligible.

Participants must be able to show their proficiency in English, for example by submitting a copy of an IELTS or TOEFL English test. More information about which English tests are accepted by the University of Oslo can be found here. The academic requirements for the Bachelor courses are a finished high school diploma which prepares one for higher education. Since this differs per country, the University has a list which shows the higher education entrance qualification per country, which can be found here. The Master’s courses require at least a 3-year Bachelor diploma. The deadline to apply for the program is March 1, 2017. Participants can apply online here.

Participants need to apply for housing at the same time as they apply for the Summer School. Housing is however not guaranteed. The University of Oslo also provides health insurance, and in order to be covered by the health insurance participants must send a Health Certificate which has been completed by a qualified medical professional. The fee for the Summer School is $3.300 if the participant stays on campus, and the off-campus fee is $1.350. These fees include social activities, health insurance and a one weekend excursion. There are many excursions to choose from, such as a trip to Bergen, a hike and white water rafting excursion in Jotunheimen, or a trip to the fjord in Oslo.

International Human Rights Law Summer School at Oxford University, England

Oxford University offers an intensive Summer School program which is focused on the theory and practice of human rights law, from 9 July to 5 August, 2017. The University website states that the course is suitable for working professionals in the human rights field, but also for students, lawyers, judges, government officials, and people working for NGO’s and international organisations related to human rights. All participants will take the course Human Rights Advocacy and Dissemination, and can then choose an additional course, which can be either International Criminal Law, Human Rights in the Marketplace, International Human Rights and Refugee Law, War, Peace and Human Rights, and Gender, Sexuality and International Human Rights Law. Participants who attended all classes and seminars to the satisfaction of the lecturers will receive a Certificate of Attendance. It is also possible to take the examination in order to be able to show grades, or in some cases for students to receive credit (this must be determined by the home institution).

Participants must have great English proficiency, which can be shown by doing the IELTS, TOEFL, or Cambridge Certificate in English test. Furthermore, participants must have at least an undergraduate degree (in any subject(), two years of legal study within the undergraduate degree, or at least one year of study towards a graduate degree. The deadline to apply to the course is 1 April 2017, and you can apply online here. Note that the applications are reviewed on receipt, and that it is therefore better to apply as soon as possible.

Accomodation will be provided by the University. Participants will stay at New College, one of Oxford’s biggest and oldest campuses, and will be houses in single rooms. The fee for the program is £7630, which inlude tuition, literature, and full-board accomodation. The University does not offer funding, but participants can contact the British Council, the British Embassy or High Commission in their home country for possible funding.

Summer University Course on Current Issues in International Human Rights Law at Aarhus University, Denmark

Aarhus University offers as part of their Summer University a course on current issues in international human rights law. The course is from July 24 to August 11, 2017. The course will focus on the challenges that the international human rights law system faces, and in particular on current issues by looking at the legal theory and the practical application thereof. The course also offers specialized courses in Refugee Law, Transitional Justice, or the Law of Armed Conflict. The course is given on Master’s level, and is open for both Danish and international students. Knowledge of international human rights law is an advantage, but is not necessary. If the examination is successfully passed students will earn 10 ECTS.

Students must have a 3-year Bachelor degree in a relevant field, and must have good English proficiency, which can be shown by doing the IELTS, TOEFL, a language course or a Cambridge Certificate in English. The deadline to apply to this course is 15 March and you can apply here.

Housing is not provided by Aarhus University, but they do assist students in finding housing. Most students stay in student residences or shared facility houses. The fee for the course is €1200 which covers tuition only.

Frontiers of Children’s Rights at Leiden University, the Netherlands

Leiden University offers a Summer School program on the Frontiers of Children’s Rights from July 3 to July 7, 2017. The program will focus on contemporary children’s right issues, and includes lectures on the protection and participation of children in armed conflicts, alternative care, children’s rights and business principles, children’s rights and the virtual world, and juvenile justice. The course combines lectures with excursions, for example a trip to a youth detention center and to the International Criminal Court. The course is especially suitable for law students, recent graduates and working professionals.

Participants must have at least a 3-year Bachelor degree. Good proficiency of the English language is strongly advised, but participants do not have to show an official certificate of an English proficiency test. The deadline to apply is June 6, but the tuition fee is less if you apply before April 1. Participants must submit their application via email to GrotiusSummerSchools@law.leidenuniv.nl. The application form can be found here. Since admittion happens on a rolling basis, it is strongly advised to apply as early as possible.

The University does not provide housing, but the University does assist participants in finding a place to stay. This webpage contains more information on finding short-term housing in Leiden. The fee for the program is €900, or €750 for applications made before April 1. The fee includes tuition, course literature, lunches, educational excursions, a canal boat tour and a farewell banquet.

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Human Rights Careers

Human Rights Careers (HRC) aims to help human rights students, recent graduates and young professionals to pursue a career in the highly competitive field of human rights.