Master of International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law
The internship is intended to provide the opportunity for the practical application of things learnt in the coursework programme. Therefore, it is essentially a period of time be spent with an organisation which has some connection with the focus of the IHL programme. This can cover a wide variety of organisations, both international and national, public or private, including the following types:
- international or national human rights bodies (for example, within the UN, or the Council of Europe or other regional human rights systems)
- NGOs (for example, amnesty international; Human Rights Watch), whether international or national.
- organisations concerned with humanitarian issues and aid (for example, UNHCR, Red Cross);
- bodies dealing with conflict management and international negotiation;
- police forces or military/defence institutions (depending to some extent on the particular focus of the activities carried out)
- academic bodies and research institutes focused on human rights (so long as this involves not simply attending further coursework on the subject but rather involves a practical focus on more specific issues or problems);
- a public prosecutor's office or a law firm (with a focus on human rights or related matters); or
- certain branches of public administration (for example, child welfare or anti-discrimination).
This list is not exhaustive, but gives an idea of the types of areas and activities which should be considered.
Students in the IHL programme need to be very active as early as possible to arrange an internship placement, as this can often take some time to organise. The IHL Academic Board will help students as much as possible to find a placement but the initiative is primarily with the students themselves. The IHL Masters Office will certainly provide a letter of support for any applications to organisations for a placement and give advice generally on internships. The internship placement must be approved by the IHL Academic Board before commencement.
Where an IHL student has already been (or is still) working in a position which would be suitable for an internship, the IHL Office may be able to give credit for this. The determinations of the equivalence will consider the nature of the organisation, the type of work done, the length of time and how long ago the activity occurred. Even voluntary work with a suitable organisation, considered on the same basis, may be regarded as equivalent. The decision on equivalence is made by the IHL Academic Board. Students should apply to the Academic Board and provide full details of the activity including statements by employers or other responsible for the activity concerning the relevant dates, the nature of the activity, responsibilities and any other useful information.
The minimum period of the internship is 2 months. At the end of the internship the responsible supervisor at the organisation will need to provide a short report and the student will provide a more detailed report of the work done and the experience gained.