Would you like to find out how an advocacy based Human Rights NGO works?
Our collaboration with the British Institute of Human Rights (BIHR) allows us to offer up to five Queen Mary law students the opportunity to undertake a summer placement with BIHR. Open to both postgraduate and undergraduate students, this internship scheme provides a unique opportunity for our students to gain practical experience of working for a human rights NGO engaged in advocacy, research, education, and policy work.
BIHR is at the forefront of practical work to embed human rights standards in the design and delivery of public services, and to empower voluntary sector organisations to apply human rights in their advocacy and campaigning work. The internship offers our students a chance to gain experience of how a human rights charity like BIHR makes a difference, and an opportunity to develop and evidence a range of skills which are invaluable in today’s competitive job market.
Interns support BIHR’s work across all its many varied functions, including legal and policy research, mapping and intelligence gathering, media and communications work, developing and testing training and educational materials, and programme management and administration. In addition, interns attend external meetings with senior officials, shadow BIHR’s Director, and attend BIHR’s regular staff and planning meetings, providing a rich insight into how issues and challenges are dealt with. Interns leave BIHR with a unique insight into the state of play with regards to human rights in the UK and a rounded experience of human rights practice.
The BIHR internship scheme opens for applications in the second semester each year, and is open to second and third year undergraduates and all postgraduates from the School of Law. Interviews take place in March, and successful students usually start their internships at the beginning of July.
About the interns
The summer 2014 QMUL interns describe their experience at BIHR:
Stacey De Souza
Programme: LLB Law - graduation 2015
Future career goal: Family/Human Rights Law Solicitor.
"I truly enjoyed my internship at the BIHR. I learned so much about the real life impact of the Human Rights Act on individual lives. Additionally, I now feel that I have a greater understanding of the inner workings of charities in the UK. During my time at the BIHR I was given real responsibility and a lot of support and I would recommend this internship to anyone who is interested in pursuing a career outside of the commercial sector."
Programme: LLB Law - graduation 2016
Future career goal: to work in an NGO that deals with human rights issues/campaigns.
“My internship with BIHR allowed me to gain great experience and insight into how an NGO is run. Because BIHR has a small team I was able to work with each staff member and learn about their role in the organisation. Everyone at BIHR, including senior members, made me feel I could ask them about anything I was unsure of or ask any question I had about the organisation. The office had a great atmosphere and I really felt like I was making the most of my time there. The work I did during the internship included researching and preparing briefs and helping with the preparation for the Human Rights Tour, this meant I learned a wide range of skills and I loved always having something new to do.”
Programme: LLB Law - graduation 2014
Future career goals: to work in the legal PR sector.
"A great way to gain first-hand experience into the area of Human Rights. I thoroughly enjoyed it!"
Dhriti Suresh Eapen
Programme: LLM in Human Rights Law - graduation: 2014
Future career goals: To work in international human rights, specifically in the context of international humanitarian law and possibly to qualify as a barrister.
“The BIHR summer internship is a fantastic opportunity. Working within a small organisation meant I was able to get a greater understanding in the running of an organisation and the opportunity to get involved in all aspects, from the coordination of events, to researching a range of topics. Furthermore it gave me a greater understanding of the applicability of human rights within a domestic setting. Specifically within the context of the tour, how human rights are applicable to people in every situation and every region.”