The Faculty of Law is delighted to announce that the recipients of the 2009 Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) Students for Development Award include three law students. Justin Dubois, Mae J. Nam, and Jeannine Plamondon (photo on left), students at McGill’s Faculty of Law, have each received a Students for Development Award, valued at $8,000. The Award supports students working with international partner organizations in order to promote good governance, a cornerstone of Canada’s international development goals.
The award winners are undertaking internships through the Human Rights Internship Program organized annually by the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism at the Faculty of Law. Interns complete 12-week placements at international tribunals and non-governmental organizations around the world. The program provides students opportunities to apply their legal education in a concrete setting and encourages students to conduct academic research on human rights issues.
“This internship will advance my skills in legal advocacy and broaden my understanding of the particular economic and human rights situation of the Philippines,” says Nam, who will be working at the Ateneo Human Rights Center (AHRC) based in Makati City, Philippines. The AHRC works to train human rights lawyers and advocates, monitor the human rights situation in the Philippines and abroad, and provide legal assistance to victims of human rights abuses. Nam is the daughter of a former Filipina domestic worker and a founding member of the Philippine Women’s Centre of Quebec advocacy group for domestic workers.
Plamondon will be spending her summer interning at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Arusha, Tanzania, where she will be working in the Office of the Prosecutor. She studied Political Science and International Development at Brigham Young University. She has interned at the European Parliament and worked with street children in Mexico and has conducted research in private law and human rights during her legal studies.
Dubois will be working for the Refugee Law Project in Kampala, Uganda engaging in advocacy work, research, and the provision of legal aid and counselling to refugees. He has a Master’s degree in Forced Migration from Oxford University’s Centre for Refugee Studies. As a law student, he has worked pro-bono with the Canadian Council for Refugees in Montreal and the Southern Refugee Legal Aid Network.
“The AUCC’s Students for Development program helps to ensure that opportunities for international human rights experience are open to all students, regardless of means,” says Genevieve Painter, the executive director of the Centre for Human rights and Legal Pluralism. “We’re delighted that our students have been successful in this year’s competition.”
The Students for Development Program, financed by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), brings together Canadian university students and partners in developing countries to contribute to governance capacity-building in developing countries. Previous recipients include law students Kyle Gervais (BCL/LLB’08), Sybil Thompson (BCL/LLB’08), Samuel Walker (BCL/LLB ’09), and Kristin McHale (BCL/LLB ’09).
For more information about the Human Rights Internships offered by the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism visit: www.mcgill.ca/humanrights/internships
Contact: Genevieve Painter, 514-398-3577, genevieve.painter [at] mcgill.ca