Julie Friedlander, a senior majoring in political science with a minor in human rights, has been selected to receive the first Richard Goldstone Internship at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.
Friedlander, who will graduate in May, will spend six months in The Hague, Netherlands, working in the research unit of the Office of the Prosecutor.
The internship comes with $5,000 funding toward accommodation and travel.
Richard Goldstone, the former chief justice of the Supreme Court of South Africa, has endowed two six-month internships, beginning this year.
Goldstone is a member of the Board of Overseers of UConn’s Human Rights Institute.
“I’m extremely excited for the opportunity to do this internship,” Friedlander says.
“I plan a career in human rights and international law, and the internship will help me narrow down exactly what I want to pursue.”
Richard Wilson, Gladstein Distinguished Chair in Human Rights and director of the Human Rights Institute, says Friedlander “is one of the many talented students pursuing a human rights minor at the University. I am delighted that she will be representing UConn at the International Criminal Tribunal. It’s an exciting illustration of what students can do in an international justice setting with a minor in human rights.”
Friedlander says her experience and commitment to justice began when she became involved in starting an Amnesty International chapter at her high school in Fairfield. She has continued to investigate human rights issues as sitting president of the UConn student chapter of Amnesty International.
Throughout her undergraduate experience, Friedlander has served as a Student Ambassador for Human Rights with the UNESCO Chair of Comparative Human Rights.
“Being an ambassador has been essential to my development in human rights education,” she says.
“The in-depth study and analysis of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has been particularly critical to furthering my comprehension of human rights.”
Friedlander has developed and implemented lesson plans on human rights in elementary, middle, and high schools.
| Julie Friedlander, a senior majoring in political science with a minor in human rights, is the first recipient of the Richard Goldstone Internship at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.
|Photo by Jordan Bender
She has also taught in First Year Experience human rights classes at UConn on topics including international law, women and the United Nations, and human rights violations in Myanmar (formerly Burma).
She served as a liaison between the UNESCO Chair of Comparative Human Rights and Lawyers without Borders, a globally-oriented volunteer group, assisting
in the planning of an intergenerational conference on human rights, and spent last summer honing her skills at the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom’s United Nations office.
Friedlander, who has taken classes including International Organizations and Law, History of Human Rights, and Comparative Perspectives on Human Rights, says she has been inspired by her courses and experience as a human rights minor.
“My classes broadened my awareness of international human rights issues,” she says.
As a complement to her studies, she assisted in research on Russian war crimes in Chechnya.
That work involved reading human rights reports from groups such as Human Rights Watch and recording abuses.
“My participation in that research helped me see the importance of investigating human rights abuses, particularly concerning violations of international law, and the need for justice to prosecute those responsible,” she says.
“The importance of international law and upholding these principles resonate strongly
with my personal dedication and
passion to promoting human rights,” Friedlander adds.
“I believe this internship will
facilitate my growth as a human rights advocate.”