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Global Institute for Human Rights

Global Institute for Human Rights

Summer Certificate Program

June 2024 (TBC)
 Location: Philadelphia, PA (Days 1-4) | United Nations in New York (Day 5)

This Global Institute is an immersive course of study aimed at undergraduate students, graduate students, and new career professionals passionate about a career in human rights advocacy, or just looking to enhance their understanding and awareness of the laws, norms, policies, movements, and strategies critical towards addressing the world’s most pressing human rights challenges.

This opportunity is unique compared to traditional academic studies of human rights, as the focus of this program is to bring working human rights advocates from around the world to the table, allowing them to share their experiences with the next generation of human rights advocates. The Institute identifies human rights as foundational to leadership and the bedrock principles of the human rights agenda as the bulwark of global citizenship.

The first four days of the program will take place at the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School, a highly selective law school that sits on the Ivy League campus of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, with the final day of the Institute taking place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. All students who complete the program will receive a Certificate of Completion from the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School.

Program Highlights

Unique Chance to Learn from Experienced Practitioners in the Field  
The Institute brings experienced human rights advocates and practitioners together from around the world to share their experiences with students. Click Here to View Past Speakers

Theory Blended with the Examination of Developing Trends in Human Rights
This program is designed to increase your understanding of human rights theory through a blend of interactive lectures that explore the most current and pressing human rights issues.

Discover How Human Rights Intersect with Other Careers
The sessions help to uncover the ways that human rights advocacy can intersect with your career aspirations, whether in law, policy, business, or other fields.

A Gateway Towards Becoming an Effective Leader & Advocate for Human Rights
The Institute is designed to transform students into the next generation of human rights scholars, practitioners, and leaders. Past students of the Institute have gone on to lead impactful advocacy work in different parts of the world, including Latin America and the Middle East. Others have opted to attend law school, including the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School.

Opportunity to Network with Peers & Fellow Advocates
Learn from the shared experiences of fellow students from around the globe and expand your network of human rights advocates leading change both near and far.

Penn Carey Law’s Global Institute for Human Rights was a critical step in advancing my passion for human rights and global governance. Equally, the Institute challenged, broadened, and opened my mind to the varied intersections of human rights advocacy in the public, private, and international arenas. Thanks to this program, I know I have been equipped with the tools to be an effective and efficient advocate for human rights, nation-building, and good governance.

—2018 Participant, Saint Joseph’s University

Rangita de Silva de Alwis

Academic Director,
Senior Adjunct Professor of Global Leadership, Member-Elect to the UN Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women ( CEDAW), Treaty Body Expert Committee (2023-2026)

Rangita de Silva de Alwis is the Senior Adjunct Professor of Global Leadership at the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School. She is an esteemed women’s human rights scholar and practitioner with over 25 years of experience working globally in over 25 countries. Rangita has worked with a vast network of academic institutions, governments, and non-government entities on women’s human rights law, policy making, and institutional reform.

Rangita podcast

Rangita de Silva de Alwis podcast — ‘Human Rights in the Time of COVID-19’

Listen to Rangita de Silva de Alwis in conversation with Agnes Callamard, UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions to discuss human rights in the time of COVID-19.

Keep Exploring

Understand GIHR’s impact: read the event recaps and watch content.

Contact Us

Questions about the Institute, application process, and admissions can be directed to