Human Rights & Action Learning Community

Join the HRLAC to learn more about human rights and engage in community service projects with your peers.

HRALC learning community group photo

Our Mission

The Human Rights & Action Learning Community engages students through academic, experiential, and residential activities designed to enhance their understanding of social justice, diversity, and civic responsibility. In partnership with the Human Rights Institute and Community Outreach, we offer service experiences and immersion programs to provide practical forums that foster a greater understanding of individual values, community issues, and the principles necessary for active citizenship.


First-year and sophomore undergraduate students interested in human rights.

Congratulations to #NobelPrize winners @maria_ressa and Dmitry Muratov.
Watch Maria when she joined our #UConnHRFilm Series to discuss how journalism is a #humanrights profession by clicking the link in our bio

Our livestream of the #DoddCenterDedication event will begin at 3pm today! Click the link in our bio to watch @potus Joe Biden and Senator Chris Dodd deliver remarks. ...

For seventy-five years, the Nuremberg Trials have symbolized the principles of dispassionate #justice and the rule of law.
Join us in viewing this short documentary on the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, created by a group of @uconndmd and Human Rights students, in collaboration with the @uconnarchives, and filmmaker and faculty member Catherine Masud.
Link in bio to view!

We’re very excited to welcome @potus Joe Biden and Senator Chris Dodd this Friday for the dedication of The Dodd Center for Human Rights @uconn.
Learn more about the event and watch the livestream by clicking the link in our bio.

Please join us for 2021 Annual Economic and Social Lecture with Sushma Raman entitled : "Pandemics and Portals: Rights in an Era of Technological Innovation".

Thursday, November 18, 2021
4:00 - 5:30 p.m. EST

For more information and registration, check out the link in our bio!

Hi everyone, it's Soph here! One interesting project which ConnPIRG is working on is the Healthy Farms, Healthy Families campaign. ConnPIRG is focused on using policy to bring change, including lobbying against the anti-sustainability policies currently in place. These policies, including the U.S. farm bill which allow for harmful chemicals to be used, are an attack against our health and our planet's health. Healthy Farms, Healthy Families is advocating for actual change which will bring longevity to our loved ones and our Earth, because they are worth it! #HRTS4291 #ServiceLearning #HRTSinAction ...

Hi! My name is Sophia Carellas (she/her/hers) and I am a senior double majoring in Political Science and Human Rights. I'm excited to be interning with ConnPIRG this semester! ConnPIRG is a part of the federal Public Interest Research Groups and is an independent organization based in Connecticut. My project this semester will focus on a campaign of advocacy for homelessness and food insecurity. I look forward to bringing actual change to our local communities in CT! #HRTS4291 #ServiceLearning #HRTSinAction ...

The photo above is from last Fall’s Haunted HEEP event that the Office of Sustainability put on. This is an example of one of our many projects that try and engage the student body at UConn. The goal of this project was to get students outdoors, and draw a wider crowd than we usually get from our environmental events by providing a fun and scary night time activity. This year we will be doing this event again, with the experience from last year under our belts. Another project we have going on is the EcoCaptains program, where students from across residence halls work part time to engage with their floormates and encourage sustainability. We are revising our Sustainability Activity Book to be ready to give out to these students, adding in pages on Environmental Justice and Sustainable Purchasing. I'm working on that now! All these projects are led by interns like myself, in collaboration with departments around campus.

#HRTS4291 #ServiceLearning #HRTSinAction

The UConn Human Rights Institute seeks a Program Assistant to support its academic programming, events, and research initiatives, and to implement its communications strategy.

Follow this link,, for more information and how to apply!

I chose to work with WITNESS because I read the testimonies of previous UConn students who had interned with WITNESS, and I was really impressed with what I saw as a stimulating and creative environment. Previous internships had been in-person, but I am thus far still finding my internship stimulating and enjoyable despite it being remote. Visual media advocacy - especially with videos - is something I haven't had a ton of experience with, but knew I would really enjoy.

I have done an internship before. Over the summer, I interned with the Human Rights Measurement Initiative, which I found to be really rewarding and completely different from what I'll be doing with WITNESS.
What I'm most looking forward to in my internship with WITNESS is the collaboration that my supervisor and I have. Every week I get a new project, which keeps me excited and task-driven. I am most looking forward to the development of my skills in visual media advocacy and being part of an active protest against mining companies in Ecuador. It feels good to be working on something that has consequences for the here and now.
#HRTS4291 #ServiceLearning #HRTSinAction

Hi everyone, it’s Danna here! I chose to intern with Planned Parenthood because their mission matched my personal and academic values. In the future, I want to go into the field of women’s health & PPGA takes a holistic view on an individual’s health state including social, political, and environmental factors on top of biological impacts. I’ve interned with PPGA for over 2 years and have learned a lot of new skills around organizing on & off campus, as well as working on campaigns in support of several bills. I look forward to continuing my work in the campaigns that I was involved in & am excited to share it with you all! #HRTS4291 #ServiceLearning #HRTSinAction ...

Hi! My name is Johany Quiroz (she/her). I am a senior double majoring in Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies and Human Rights. I am currently interning with UConn's Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program (WGSS). The WGSS program is devoted to advocating for social justice through education. They have made it their responsibility to reshape the current scholarship imposed on us and shed light on the systems that enable human rights abuses. I look forward to sharing my work throughout the semester! #HRTS4291 #ServiceLearning #HRTSinAction ...

Hey everyone, my name is Michio Agresta (he/him) and I am a senior Natural Resources and Environment major with minors in Human Rights and Spanish. This semester I am interning with the Natural Resource Conservation Association (NRCA) which is an extension program based out of UConn, and I hold the position of Difference Maker Mentor. In this role I am helping high school students create and execute conservation projects in their hometowns, as well as various side projects that address aspects of environmental justice. #HRTS4291 #ServiceLearning #HRTSinAction ...

I chose to intern at Refugees Welcome! Boston because as a daughter of immigrants- who moved to America to start a better life for themselves and their children- I know it is my duty to help those who come to this country voluntarily, and those seeking refuge from violence in their home countries. Oftentimes, many immigrants and refugees have no idea where to look to find services or who to turn to. As my first internship in my academic career, I am looking forward to strengthening my research and writing skills, as well as using what I have learned from human rights classes taken at UConn and applying my knowledge to pertinent human rights issues facing the migrant population today. #HRTS4291 #ServiceLearning #HRTSinAction ...

Hello everyone! My name is Lisette, I’m a senior, and my majors are Political Science, Human Rights, and History and my minor is German. I am interning with WITNESS this semester. WITNESS is a global human rights initiative that aims to train human rights practitioners in using video and visual media to document human rights violations. Specifically I am interning with the Latin American and Caribbean programmatic coordinator. We will be aiming to ameliorate the situation for Indigenous people in Ecuador, whose land is being grabbed and polluted by Canadian mining companies. I will be helping in this effort by helping to translate, trying to reach the Canadian citizenry to protest these companies, and creating graphics to disseminate information. I am very excited to begin this project!!! #HRTS4291 #ServiceLearning #HRTSinAction ...

Reflections from Past Members

Rich Garcia

“The Human Rights and Action Learning Community is the place that I consider my home here at UConn. I think that being in the LC has really allowed me to expand my thought process and really think about the issues that are affecting not only myself, but everyone around me as well.”

- Richard Garcia

“HRALC has done so much for me. I found my best friends, my passions, and because of it I have gotten the most out of my first two years at UConn.”

- Kristen Belisario

Kristen Belasario
Olivia Stevens

“This LC helped me step into college feeling confident and sure of myself. This group of people have helped make this transition much easier and I love the values we believe in as a community.”

- Olivia Stevens

“I would absolutely encourage incoming freshmen to join the HRALC! Sure it may seem like a lot of work at first, but it’s worth it. Especially for those who like want to make friends, care about human rights and like volunteering.”

—Simran Thakur

Simran Thakur

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