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Academic Programs

Freedom House

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This internship is given to an outstanding human rights undergraduate student to complete a summer internship at Freedom House in Washington, DC.

This eight-week learning immersion experience is awarded to an outstanding human rights undergraduate student completing a summer internship at Freedom House in Washington, DC. A $5,000 scholarship is provided to assist with expenses related to the internship. Freedom House is a nonpartisan advocacy institution that has been in existence since 1941. Students involved in this internship will observe first-hand the practice of advocacy. When applying, students should specify if they are interested in working with Communications, Development or with the Africa Desk.

Students with an interest in advocacy for democracy and human rights around the world should consider this internship.

For more information, please see

Atkin PhotoArthur Atkin is entering his 5th year at the University of Connecticut pursuing a double major in Political Science and Human Rights. Arthur is also aspiring to obtain his Masters in Public Administration (MPA) from UConn and is a part of University’s fast-track MPA program. This past summer (2015), Arthur interned on the Design, Monitoring and Evaluation team at Freedom House, located in Washington, D.C., from June to August.
Throughout high school and his first two years at UConn, Arthur was an active member of the Model United Nations club. He has also held several leadership positions as a member of the Greek community and as a brother of Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) since the fall of his freshman year. These positions include serving as a Greek Peer Ambassador and the Inter-Fraternity Council’s Vice-President of Recruitment, and serving as his fraternity’s House manager, Homecoming Chairman and Philanthropy Chairman. Arthur has also been an employee at UConn’s Student Union since his sophomore year and currently works as a Building Manager at the Student Union, a position he was selected for in the spring of his 3rd undergraduate year.
In the future and after obtaining both his bachelor degrees in Political Science and Human Rights and Master’s degree in Public Administration from UConn, Arthur is working towards becoming a Foreign Services Officer for the U.S. State Department.

Andrew Oravecz is a rising senior at the University of Connecticut pursuing a double major in Political Science and Human Rights. Andrew worked as an external relations intern at Freedom House, located in Washington, D.C., from May through July 2014.

During his freshman year, Andrew was a member of the Leadership Learning Community where he sought to polish his practical and theoretical leadership skills. In fall of 2012, Andrew became a Resident Assistant in North campus where he served as a mentor, leader, and advocate for his floor and overall community. At the start of his junior year, Andrew moved to Alumni Quadrangle where he will again serve as Resident Assistant his senior year. In addition, during fall of 2013, Andrew conducted a significant research paper under the direction of Professor John Clifford. Looking through the lens of early American diplomacy, Andrew conducted research regarding the Hague Peace Conferences of 1899 where he sought to understand the balance of foreign policy interests and respect for human rights by the American delegation. Andrew came to the conclusion that, despite having few tangible accomplishments, the peace conferences served as a framework for future international agreements.

In spring 2014, Andrew interned in the Congressional Office of Representative Elizabeth Esty in Washington, D.C. Andrew contributed to the office by providing constituent services, attending briefings on behalf of staff, providing informative memos, and conducting policy research. While in Washington, Andrew also participated in a Foreign Policy and National Security program hosted by Partnership for a Secure America. Andrew was named one of eighteen scholars to contribute to the Back to Bipartisanship program which encompassed students from across the country.
In the future, Andrew hopes to study abroad to further understand the complexities of international relations. The intersection of foreign affairs, American diplomacy, and human rights is Andrew’s passion.

Coming Soon.

JohnsonTess Johnson is a rising senior at the University of Connecticut and was the first intern from the Human Rights Institute at Freedom House in Washington D.C. She worked with Freedom House from June through August 2012 as part of their sub-Saharan Africa programs.Since her freshman year, Tess has been a student in the University’s Honors Program in the Department of Political Science. Tess has had the opportunity to do undergraduate research on two separate occasions, looking at public attitudes and behaviors about ethical consumption in the spring of 2011 and at the New England town meeting form of government in the state of Connecticut in the fall of 2011. Tess recently presented her research, “Public Views on Ethical Consumption,” as part of the Social Sciences, Humanities, and Arts Research Experience (SHARE) at the 15th Annual Frontier in Undergraduate Research Poster Exhibition this April. Tess also hopes to be one of the first graduates of the new Human Rights major.

Tess has also worked as a student facilitator in the UConn Connects Program, which helps students on academic probation and other at-risk students to get back on track. Tess has also been active in the Arabic language program at the University.

Tess will be writing her Honors thesis beginning in the Fall of 2012 in conjunction with the Political Science Department and the Human Rights Institute with Dr. David Richards. Tess hopes to examine in depth the relationship between corporations and human rights. Upon graduation, Tess hopes to pursue a career in human rights after completing a program in either international affairs or law.