The Human Rights Center is holding its annual competition for student fellowships in partnership with organizations working on human rights issues. Registered students at UC Berkeley and the Graduate Theological Union are eligible, with priority given to graduate and returning students.  The amount of the fellowship stipend will be $4,500.


These awards will enable students to carry out clearly defined fieldwork, domestically or internationally, with organizations working on human rights issues related to a student’s area of study. Applicants must plan to spend at least six to eight weeks working with a partner organization to qualify for the fellowship.

The purpose of the fellowship is to provide students with an opportunity to contribute to the organizations’ work while also gaining practical experience that may influence the students’ areas of research or academic focus. Partnerships with both governmental and non-governmental organizations are acceptable, so long as the affiliation enables the proposed human rights work. Multi-disciplinary approaches to human rights fieldwork are welcomed and fellows are encouraged to publish their results.

Three core goals guide the Human Rights Center’s activities: pursuing accountability for mass atrocities; ensuring that needs of survivors are heard; and strengthening the research and advocacy capacities of local and international human rights organizations.

Since 1994, 227 UC Human Rights Fellows have researched the most pressing human rights issues in 65 countries.

The deadline for 2013 fellowship applications is February 21, 2013 at 4 p.m. More information about the fellowships is available on the HRC website.

Alexa Koenig
Alexa Koenig

In addition to its many graduate fellowships, the Human Rights Center works directly with a number of graduate student researchers on its ongoing projects and it offers graduate seminars through the School of Law or the School of Public Health.  Several of its staff members have Berkeley graduate degrees, including its newly-selected executive director, Alexa Koenig. Koenig earned her M.A. in law here in 2009 and is expecting her Ph.D. in jurisprudence and social policy in 2013.  She taught at the University of San Francisco School of Law for five years and has written extensively about war crimes and human rights law for a variety of publications.  (From 2008 to 2010, she was a Graduate Student Instructor in legal studies courses, and for 2009-2010 she won an Outstanding GSI Award from the Graduate Division.)