Our Alumni

After an intense year of reading, researching and studying about human rights, I can only be grateful to Professors Siegfried Wiessner and Roza Pati, for the high quality of the curriculum and the faculty selected for each course. Read more. . .

Tomas Randle, Esq.
Argentina, LL.M. '17

Tomas Randle, Esq.
Argentina, LL.M. '17

The St. Thomas Law’s globally acclaimed LL.M./J.S.D. in Intercultural Human Rights program prides itself in offering its students a unique and challenging academic experience. The program’s world-renowned faculty from places such as the United Nations, Oxford University, the Human Rights Watch, and international courts as well as its one-of-a-kind curriculum creates a highly stimulating learning environment for its students.

Tomas Randle, Esq., who graduated magna cum laude from the Master of Laws in Intercultural Human Rights program in May 2017, looks back at his educational experience at St. Thomas Law. For Tomas, being a Fulbright Award recipient from Argentina gave him the opportunity to pursue his LL.M. degree at any university of his choice in the United States. After much thought and deliberation, he elected to attend St. Thomas Law’s LL.M. Program. The Intercultural Human Rights Law Review ranking sixth among all human rights law journals worldwide and the eminent instructors served as the magnet that attracted him to the program. During his study, Tomas had the opportunity to meet people from similar professional backgrounds from all over the world, and the result of sharing the same passion and concerns about human rights and the enriching intellectual experience exceeded his expectations.

I can say without reservation that the LL.M. program gave me the courage, the motivation and the inspiration to push for sustainable solutions to the problems that most impact our community. Read more. . .

Virginia Akar, Esq.
United States, LL.M. '16

Virginia Akar, Esq.
United States, LL.M. '16

Ms. Virginia M. Akar, Esq. is an attorney at law and human rights advocate. She is the Co-founder and President of Strong Girls, Inc., a non-profit organization whose mission is to embolden all girls to succeed in school. Ms. Akar began her legal career as an Assistant State Attorney in Miami-Dade County in 1994. She is a member of the City of Miami Community Relations Board and serves as the Executive Director of Young Musicians Unite. Ms. Akar graduated summa cum laude and as class valedictorian from the Master of Laws in Intercultural Human Rights program in 2016.

“When I entered the Intercultural Human Rights LLM program, it was with the intention of ultimately teaching. Instead, the depth of the program and its engaging topics delivered by some of the most knowledgeable experts in human rights became the catalyst that jolted me into “do something” mode. Midway through the program, inspired by many of the professors and their passion for the topics they discussed and their work in a multitude of human rights arenas, I began working on an anti-poverty project that ultimately led to the founding of Strong Girls, Inc. We have partnered with Dade County Public Schools and the 10-year program stays with the girls through high school developing a pipeline to college and employable skills to break the cycle of poverty. I can say without reservation that the LL.M. program gave me the courage, the motivation and the inspiration to push for sustainable solutions to the problems that most impact our community.”

Every day I recognize the academic quality and practical usefulness of the LL.M. Program at St. Thomas Law. Read more. . .

Sergio A. Marin
Colombia, LL.M. '15

Sergio A. Marin
Colombia, LL.M. '15

Sergio A. Marin, a graduate of St.Thomas Law's LL.M./J.S.D. in Intercultural Human Rights program, played a major role in the drafting process of a decree for the creation and regulation of the Committee for the Fight Against Trafficking in Persons for the City of Floridablanca, second most populated city in the Department of Santander, Colombia.

Under the auspices of the Mayor of Floridablanca, the Secretary of the Government of Santander, and the local branch of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the document (Decree No. 0227/2017) is a major stepping stone toward reducing and preventing the crime of trafficking in persons in Santander.

For Sergio, the opportunity to work on the creation of the committee was a humbling experience and a great achievement. Sergio is currently working with the Internal Oversight Office in the City of Bucaramanga, Santander’s capital city. His next task entails the drafting of a new bill to help address the problem of child abduction in his region and he intends to add components of human trafficking to the bill.

Sergio, who earned his LL.M degree in Intercultural Human Rights and graduated with honors in 2015, expressed his deepest appreciation to the program for its academic quality and practical usefulness, which has been invaluable in his efforts to create positive change in his community.

The LL.M. at St. Thomas Law has been a tremendous help in fostering the highest standards of the legal profession in my practice as a lawyer Read more. . .

Gunbileg Boldbaatar
Mongolia, LL.M. '05

Gunbileg Boldbaatar
Mongolia, LL.M. '05

Mr. Gunbileg Boldbaatar is the President of the Mongolian Bar Association, an organization first established in 2013. Mongolia requires that every lawyer (judge, prosecutor, advocate and other legal professionals) shall be a member of the MBA. The Bar Association shall undertake to implement such functions as to set common standards of the practice of law, the reputation and accountability of the legal profession, as well as to protect interests of lawyers, increase their knowledge and skills, participate in the selection of judges, accredit law schools and provide expert assistance with legislation.

"The LL.M. at St. Thomas Law has been a tremendous help in fostering the highest standards of the legal profession in my practice as a lawyer and now in my position as the President of the Mongolian Bar Association. I also fondly remember the program's most welcoming response to arguments presented in class by students from radically different cultures."

The LL.M. program first allowed me to introduce the human rights dimension in my work as a researcher and professor. Read more. . .

Dr. Mireya Maritza Peña Guzmán
Colombia, LL.M. '03

Dr. Mireya Maritza Peña Guzmán
Colombia, LL.M. '03

Dr. Peña Guzmán is Head of the Justice and Rule of Law Unit of the Rule of Law and Security Institutions Service, of the United Nations Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Guinea-Bissau (UNIOGBIS). Her previous experience include, inter alia, service at the former peace operations in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE), the Syrian Arab Republic (UNSMIS), and in Central African Republic (BINUCA) as well as in the recently-established peace operations in South Sudan (UNMISS) and Mali (MINUSMA). She also served at the Geneva HQ of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights working, inter alia, at the Human Rights Council as well as with various UN thematic Special Procedures, among others, on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, the Human Rights of Migrants, Contemporary Forms of Slavery, Cultural Rights, the rights of Indigenous peoples and violence against women.

"The LL.M. program first allowed me to introduce the human rights dimension in my work as a researcher and professor. Thereafter, it also helped me to make real my dream to work for the United Nations in the advancement of peace, development, and human rights worldwide. Now, I embrace and value diversity and intercultural dialogue in my daily work."

Influenced by The New Haven School of Jurisprudence and the idea of the 'hegemonic international law' which I learnt at St. Thomas School of Law Graduate Program in Intercultural Human Rights. Read more. . .

Dr. Cosmin Corendea
Romania, LL.M. '06

Dr. Cosmin Corendea
Romania, LL.M. '06

Dr. Cosmin Corendea is Associate Academic Officer and Legal Expert at the United Nations University, Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS), in Bonn, Germany. He is acting as focal point for legal issues associated with environmental degradation and adverse effects of climate change: institutional vulnerabilities and adaptation, climate equity, climate justice, human rights, forced migration. He conducts research on conceptual and comparative frameworks of legal perceptions of environmental vulnerabilities, resilience and sustainable development impacts with distinct and positive reflection in policy making. He is also recent recipient of the prestigious AXA Research Fellowship, a research grant allowing him to continue his research on climate change and international law.

Most importantly, Dr. Corendea is part of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change team of lawyers working on drafting, finalizing and disseminating the legal text which is expected to come out of the Paris CoP 21 on Climate Change, in November-December 2015.

"Influenced by The New Haven School of Jurisprudence and the idea of the 'hegemonic international law' which I learnt at St. Thomas School of Law Graduate Program in Intercultural Human Rights, I am happy to state that I am best known for initiating and developing the concept of 'international hybrid law' in 2007 — a legal research tool which uses human rights, environmental and refugee/migration law in climate change-related case analysis,— becoming this way one of pioneer scholars in the field researching the correlation between international law and climate change."

The LL.M. and J.S.D. program at St. Thomas University School of Law is of the highest quality design of any human rights curriculum available anywhere in the world. Read more. . .

Dr. Mark Dell Kielsgard
United States, LL.M. '04, J.S.D. '09

Dr. Mark Dell Kielsgard
United States, LL.M. '04, J.S.D. '09

Dr. Kielsgard, a prolific scholar and human rights activist is Assistant Professor of Law and Director of Mooting and Advocacy at the City University of Hong Kong. In 2012-2013, Dr. Kielsgard was the recipient of the prestigious Myres S. McDougal Prize.

"The LL.M. and J.S.D. program at St. Thomas University School of Law is of the highest quality design of any human rights curriculum available anywhere in the world. It brings together the most respected scholars and lawyers in the field with the most diverse student body to rigorously train them to become leaders in human rights. Its reach is truly global. This program was a defining moment in my life that transformed my career and has directly led to the fulfilment of my life's work. Thanks to this program I attained the necessary expertise to become a law professor, scholar and human rights activist. In addition to teaching at my home institution in Hong Kong I have been honoured to lecture in Cambodia, mainland China, Armenia and North America to students, NGO's and International Court personnel. The track record of St. Thomas' graduates is extraordinary with many going on to careers in academia, and public and private sector positions that greatly impact human rights and human dignity."

The LL.M. Program in Intercultural Human Rights has prepared me well to meet the challenges of my job at the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. Read more. . .

Dr. Fatima Waziri
Nigeria, LL.M. '07

Dr. Fatima Waziri
Nigeria, LL.M. '07

Dr. Waziri is Research Fellow and Head of Department of Public Law at the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (NIALS) — Nigeria's apex institution for research and advanced studies in law. read more. . .

"The LL.M. Program in Intercultural Human Rights has prepared me well to meet the challenges of my job at the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. Officially commissioned in March 1979 as Nigeria's apex institution for research and advanced studies in law, the Institute focuses on enhancing national development. The policy-oriented jurisprudence approach I learnt at St. Thomas has been an amazing effective tool in my professional career."