Prof. Dr. iur. Siegfried Wiessner, Director
Human Rights at St. Thomas University School of Law
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St. Thomas University School of Law is a law school committed to human rights and social justice—committed to teaching, training, and empowering the next generation of human rights advocates and decision makers through our globally unique LL.M. Program; and, committed to original research in the field through our J.S.D. Program in Intercultural Human Rights. Through programs like our Human Trafficking Academy, we address the cutting edge of global issues of concern and train students to solve these problems responsibly. Through projects such as the Human Rights Institute we dedicate ourselves to helping those in need in our own community. Locally and globally, we are devoted to shining a light on current human rights issues through our annual conferences and symposia, our Intercultural Human Rights Law Review, ranked No. 9 in the world, and our International Moot Court Program. We challenge you to join us and together walk the path towards a world public order of human dignity.
Message from the Director
Human dignity is inviolable.
These words are easily spoken – and so tough to make a reality. Violations abound – be they in the form of the cruelest atrocities, be they in the callousness of everyday interactions. Ideals and laws, however well-intentioned, do not enforce themselves. They need the conveyor-belt of human action. Human rights laws, in particular, remain dry parchment unless they are promoted, created and applied by selfless warriors for the respect of others, most importantly, the vulnerable and the oppressed. These advocates urgently require the proper arms to succeed – the intellectual arsenal necessary to win the fight of hearts and minds.
St. Thomas University School of Law offers its unique contribution to this struggle in its distinctive Master of Laws (LL.M.) and Doctor of the Science of Law (J.S.D.) Programs in Intercultural Human Rights. St. Thomas' Catholic identity makes it an apt place to work in the vineyard for social justice. The international orientation and commitment to diversity makes St. Thomas a proper meeting-ground for diverse cultures, backgrounds and beliefs. Beyond the specter of cultures clashing, erupting in violence, this program tries to overcome discord and hatred by bringing antagonists together, striving, in intercultural dialogue, to search for a common ground of values that would allow every person on this planet to reach for her ultimate potential.
To this end, role-models of decision-making in the field are flown in from all over the globe – leaving their desks at top-flight universities such as Yale, Oxford, Georgetown, Milan, or the United Nations, European, Inter-American and African human rights bodies to teach the essentials of human rights law in their field of expertise. The students and the faculty engage in a rich and fruitful dialogue that will forever change their lives.
We invite you to join us in this exciting experience.