LAW 927

Human Rights in Action Clinic - International Field Experience

Human Rights, International Law

 The Promise Institute for Human Rights is offering for the 2024 J-Term the Human Rights in Action Clinic (HRAC) – International Field Experience.  The International Field Experience offers students a unique opportunity to engage in human rights work in an international context and learn from leading human rights lawyers and activists on the ground.  Building on clinical work of Human Rights in the Americas Project Director Joe Berra with clients and partners in Honduras, the 2024 J-Term course will give students an intensive immersion experience in the human rights struggle in Honduras.  Students will participate in various learning modules and workshops in dialog with our partners, clients, and activists, as well as conduct fieldwork in a collaborative model of human rights advocacy on behalf of our clients and in support of the litigation efforts of our partners.Students will also have the option to enroll in a Spring semester Advanced Human Rights Clinic to continue the work begun during the International Field Experience.Students will be required to complete background reading and participate in one Zoom seminar session prior to travel. Students can expect a full and demanding schedule while on site in Honduras. Students must be available for travel for the duration of the on-site component.  Our scheduled departure date is the late night (red-eye flight) of January 2, for arrival to Honduras on Monday January 3. Our return is scheduled for January 15. We will travel extensively in Honduras in a rental vehicle, between the major cities of San Pedro Sula and Tegucigalpa, and to one or more of the interior departments. Students should be highly flexible and adaptable. We will follow a strict safety protocol, and nighttime activities will be restricted to group activities.We will work closely with attorneys from the human rights department of the Equipo de Reflexión, Investigación y Comunicación de Honduras (ERIC: and the Movimiento Amplio de Dignidad y Justicia (MADJ:  Fieldwork will support social movement organizations and ongoing projects of the Promise Institute’s Human Rights in the Americas initiative, such as the Consejo Cívico de Organizaciones Populares e Indígenas de Honduras (COPINH:, the Organización Fraternal Negra de Honduras (OFRANEH:, the indigenous Tolupán people of Yoro, and communities resisting extractivist projects.  We will also be in dialog with other grass roots organizations engaged in the struggle for human rights.  Fieldwork projects will be designed in coordination with our partners, with a view towards making a positive contribution, in a collaborative framework, to ongoing human rights litigation, pre-litigation, or research to be used in advocacy.  Our main base will be in El Progreso, Yoro, with in-country travel likely for our fieldwork as well as meetings in Tegucigalpa. A minimum level of Spanish competency is required, including conversational Spanish. Prospective applicants should show a demonstrated commitment to the field of human rights through prior experience or law school course of study. Students interested in continuing work on projects as part of an Advanced Human Rights Clinic (2 units) in the Spring are desired.Travel and per diem expenses (lodging and meals) will be covered by the Promise Institute.  Travel will be arranged and registered through UC travel.  As a university activity, travel insurance will be provided by the UC system: All students will be asked to sign a liability waiver.Citizens of the United States, Canada, Mexico and most of Latin America do not need a visa to travel to Honduras; however, a valid passport with an expiration date no earlier than July 2022 is required.  Non-U.S. Citizens should review this list of countries for which a visa may be required to enter Honduras. If you are unsure whether you will require a visa for Honduras, you should consult with the Honduran consulate in Los Angeles (see the consulate’s facebook page here).International students seeking to participate should check with the Dashew Center for International Students and Scholars regarding travel abroad and return on their student visa.In addition to the application, professor Berra will interview applicants prior to admission into the course. Admitted students will meet with professor Berra in early December to go over logistics for the course, protocols, and health and safety concerns.  If you have any particular concerns, please contact professor Berra.Enrollment for the Human Rights in Action Clinic – International Field Experience is capped at four students.

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