Welcome to the Fall Semester!

Welcome to the 2014-2015 academic year, which marks the 30th Anniversary of the Human Rights Program. We’re officially back in the swing of things and excited to see many familiar faces from last year, as well as meet the many new students arriving this year. Our first week of classes is well underway, with Tyler and Deborah teaching Human Rights Advocacy; Bonnie teaching Human Rights & The Environment; Gerald teaching International Human Rights; and Gerald and Mindy teaching the seminar on Human Rights in the UN Treaty Bodies with our LLM concentrators. Earlier this week, we met all of our clinical students, as they preferenced the 13 projects offered this semester, on topics ranging from U.S. torture prosecutions to communications surveillance to the right to education in South Africa.

Our team looks a bit different this year. We said goodbye to a few gems this summer: Yennifer Pedraza, Meera Shah and Kaitlyn Hennigan, all of whom moved on to other great opportunities. In their stead, we’ve welcomed three terrific members to our team: Gabbie Follett, Program Assistant; Katherine Talbot, Program Associate; and Anna Crowe, Clinical Advocacy Fellow. We’re also excited about this year’s Visiting Fellows, scholars and practitioners we know will enrich our community: Teng Biao, Mark Gould, Nina H. B. Jørgensen, Machiko Kanetake, Su-ming Khoo, and Benjamin Zawacki.

At our standing-room only Human Rights Program Orientation yesterday, we flagged a few upcoming events, which we’ll do here as well: look out for a discussion with Justice Albie Sachs of South Africa this Friday afternoon; the Human Rights Program’s 30th anniversary celebration next Friday, Sept. 19, which will feature outside speakers and gather HRP alums from around the world; a panel discussion with Harvard faculty about Gaza, International Humanitarian Law and human rights on Sept. 22; and a Sept. 30 talk by Pakistani jurist Mujeeb-ur-Rahman, who will provide insight on the religious persecution of the Ahmadis in Pakistan.

We’re looking forward to all of it, and hope very much that you are, too.

Gerald, Tyler, Susan and Mindy