International Human Rights Internships

Program overview

McGill’s Faculty of Law enjoys a rich tradition of human rights education and experiential learning. Since 1992, the Faculty has offered hundreds of internship opportunities with dozens of partner organizations: courts and human rights commissions, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), Indigenous courts and communities, and other human rights’ partners in Canada and across the globe.

The unparalleled experiences and outcomes of the International Human Rights Internship Program are donor-funded. We gratefully acknowledge the invaluable support of our generous donors.

Human Rights Internships

Information session for summer 2022

Spend the summer gaining practical skills in the field of human rights while earning 6 credits at an international human rights internship with one of the McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism’s (CHRLP) partner institutions, such as NGOS, courts, and public institutions for a period of 12 weeks over the next summer. 

Administered by the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism (CHRLP), the International Human Rights Internships Program (IHRIP) is a fully credited course that allows students to earn six (6) credits toward the completion of the BCL/JD degree. The Internship Program is managed by the Faculty’s Human Rights Committee under the direction of Professor Nandini Ramanujam.

The Program interviews and selects law students for placements as interns with NGOS, courts, and public institutions for a period of 12 weeks over the summer. Partner organizations provide students with practical work experience in human rights investigation, monitoring, and reporting. The internships also provide exposure to the operation and implementation of human rights instruments and norms.

Dominic Bell (Maliiganik Tukisiiniakvik 2015), participated in local activities, such as line fishing.

Students participate in the Program as volunteers, with partial funding from the Faculty of Law. Following their summer placements, interns return to the Faculty with practical training and personal experience that enrich the intellectual and social life of the law school community.

Academic requirements

The International Human Rights Internship Program is a six-credit course, consisting of (3) credits during the summer semester and three (3) credits in the fall semester. The three summer credits go towards the 12-week field placement and a short Internship report. The remaining three fall credits count for the seminar course leading to a research paper. Applications are normally due at the end of October for the following summer.

N.B. The total number of non-course credits taken throughout the BCL/JD program may not exceed 15. Human Rights Internships only counts for three non-course credits.


Students participate in the Program as volunteers.  A stipend is available to cover travel and living expenses, but students receive no salary for their work. Students will have to pay the registration fees for a 6-credit course. This cost is not covered by the program.

Intern Lipi Mishra (CEHURD 2013) learning from rural community leaders.
Students will receive a stipend from the Faculty of Law. The stipend awards cover a significant portion of the travel and living costs in each of the internship locations.

Students who undertake to raise additional funds for their internships may obtain a letter from the Director of the Program confirming the student’s participation in the Internship Program, and encouraging support for the student’s non-remunerated work.

Students who already receive student aid may qualify for an Enriched Educational Opportunity bursary.

More details on funding, travel logistics and requirements are provided to the selected interns in the winter term.

Supporting funds

The Program is supported by the following funds which cover travel costs and stipends. All selected interns are automatically considered for program funding; there is no need to make a separate application for these.

Thank you to our friends and supporters who make the International Human Rights Internship program possible at McGill Law. 

  • Aurora Human Rights Internships Award 
  • David W. Binet Student International Fund 

  • Enriched Educational Opportunities Fund 

  • Francine and Robert Wiseman International Human Rights Award  

  • Francine and Robert Wiseman International Internship Award  

  • Katharine A. Pearson Chair in Civil Society and Public Policy 

  • Lindsey Anne Cameron Award 

  • Lord Reading Society Human Rights Bursary 

  • M. Novak and K. Weil Human Rights Internship Fund 

  • M. Novak and K. Weil International Experience Internship Award 

  • McGill Faculty of Law 

  • Nancy Park Memorial Prize 

  • Petcher-Caron International Internship Award 

  • Robert S. Litvack Award 

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