2017 Internship Fellow Spotlight: Jillianne Lyon

HRI Summer 2017 Internship Fellow, Jillianne Lyon was highlighted on the Instagram feed of the UConn Center for Career Development earlier this week. Follow along as Jillianne shows us her internship at the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre in NYC #huskiesatwork


Hi everyone! I’m Jillianne Lyon, a rising UConn senior, double majoring in Human Rights and Political Science. This summer I’m interning at the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre (BHRRC) in NYC as a fellow from the Human Rights Institute here at UConn. The BHRRC is a nonprofit organization that tracks the human rights policy and performance of over 7000 companies in over 180 countries, making information publicly available. #huskiesatwork

Picture of city

The BHRRC is located on Wall Street, just a few subway stops away from where I’m living! Business Human Rights is an international field based on the 2008 “Ruggie Principles,” which provide a 3-pillar framework; the state duty to protect against human rights abuses, the corporate responsibility to respect human rights, and greater access by victims to effective remedy. #huskiesatwork

Picture of office space

This is what our New York office looks like! I’m the only US intern at the moment, but there are others working from our London base. In NYC, there are 5 staff members who work on various projects and global regions. My focus is on environmental justice, refugee/immigrant rights, and gender equality. I get to work in both French and English (my French minor is coming in handy!) and research human rights initiatives happening all over the globe. #huskiesatwork

Today is a busy day at the Centre! We are seeking company responses regarding Trump’s pullout from the Paris Climate Agreement. 75% of companies we reach out to respond, and we post their response rates on our website. The BHRRC also runs knowthechain.org and corporatebenchmark.org, which rates companies on their human rights policies. #huskiesatwork



This amazing view is from my desk! Most days I stay in the office, but sometimes I attend meetings with other Business and Human Rights NGOs in the city. Most meetings, however, I take at my desk through Skype, as we have staff in Brazil, Colombia, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Kenya, Japan, Myanmar, Mexico, Senegal, South Africa, UK, Ukraine and USA. #huskiesatwork



One of my responsibilities is posting articles on the BHRRC website. This story I put up is about Guatemalan miners seeking retributions from a mining company that violently repressed a workers protest. Spreading awareness is always a key part of human rights work. All in all, I hope you enjoyed this peak into my internship experience! Thanks for following me around today- Bye UConn! #huskiesatwork


Learn more about our Summer Internship Fellows program on our website, http://humanrights.uconn.edu/internships/