In graduate school, I interned with the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED) and worked on human rights issues related to counter-terrorism. One of the on-going concerns in the movement to prevent terrorism is combating human rights abuses like torture, and drew from the UN human rights mechanisms. Reports from UNCAT were critical in many of my briefing notes because they contained the most information about specific challenges faced by states, which were then used by CTED to help countries identify areas where they could improve human rights in the larger goal to prevent terrorism. When I applied to law school, I picked WCL because of the Kovler Project because I wanted an opportunity to work with UNCAT, which countless organizations rely on to improve human rights for people around the globe.
Long term, I would like to work on human rights issues internationally. Since UNCAT, and the other treaty monitoring bodies, play such an important role in human rights efforts by international organizations I wanted the opportunity to work with one to understand the process from the inside. In my mind, even if I never work directly with UNCAT again, I will understand how it works and be able to use that knowledge throughout my career to strengthen my ability to promote human rights.
Lydia's Human Rights Quote:
“The rights of every man are diminished when the rights of one man are threatened.”John F. Kennedy