Internship at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Geneva
Anna Pick (2015, Human, Social & Political Sciences)
I am now three weeks into my internship at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva, which I was able to undertake due to generous support through a THA Volunteering Award.
The placement has already proved an extremely valuable experience. On the 10th September, the Human Rights Council began its 39th Session. During a three-week period, state delegations, NGO representatives, and experts engage in discussions on a huge range of subjects, from gender equality and genocide prevention, to gross human rights violations in particular countries. The Council’s team of seven interns are given a number of responsibilities, including assisting with the drafting of the session report, recording statistics to ensure that speakers reflect a gender and geographic balance, and note-taking for NGO side events.
I have particularly enjoyed assisting the media and public information team, and have regularly volunteered for extra tasks, such as transcribing and editing video interviews of members of the Commission for South Sudan. I was even asked, last-minute, to present a live interview with two independent experts from the Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar (pictured). During the session I have had the opportunity to work with many different divisions of the Council, under the supervision of Senior Human Rights Officer, Ljiljana Stancic. I have also been improving my French and Italian by carrying out translation tasks, for instance writing English captions for the Council’s YouTube videos.
I am keen to stay within the field of human rights, and am exploring advocacy organisations and public-interest consultancies as a next step. I also plan to apply for graduate study abroad in the next two years.
I am extremely grateful to have had such a rich experience of international politics and diplomacy so soon after leaving Cambridge, and would like to thank the THA Committee once again for its support.