The Catholic University of America

SUMMER ABROAD - ROME PROGRAM                      


Law Students Participate in CUA Law's 
2018 International Human Rights Summer Law Program in Rome.

From May 19 to June 9, a group of law school students and faculty spent three weeks in Rome in the 5th offering of Catholic University’s International Human Rights Summer Law Program in Rome. Professors Lucia Silecchia, Stacy Brustin and Sarah Duggin accompanied the students in Rome, teaching courses that explored the intersection of international human rights law with other substantive areas of law, including international environmental law, corporate social responsibility, and immigration and refugee law. In addition, several students opted to conduct directed research with Professor Silecchia exploring the involvement of the Holy See on selected human rights issues.

In addition to the intense 3-week, 4 credit program of study, students also visited various legal institutions in Rome including the Italian Senate, the Corte of Cassation (Italian Supreme Court) and the Headquarters of the Food and Agriculture Organization. The group was also welcomed by name at the May 23 rd General Audience with Pope Francis. As has become tradition, the first Saturday of the program was devoted to a day trip to the town of Assisi in the mountains of Umbria.

The International Human Rights Summer Program in Rome was first offered in 2011 with a specific commitment to offering students the opportunity to explore human rights law in depth. Each time the program has been offered, the course selections have revolved around different questions of human rights -- and their correlative responsibilities. The nature of these rights, their source, and their scope are among the most important questions of the social order.  Both historically and in the present day there is no shortage of examples of disrespect for human rights and human dignity. Responding to this is a task that, in a particular way, falls to lawyers whose special training and knowledge allows them to work in and with the institutions and legal authorities that can protect, promote and clearly articulate fundamental human rights. 

This is also a task that lies very close to the heart of the mission of Catholic University's Columbus School of Law, which includes a core commitment to the ideals of the dignity of each human person; respect for the inviability of all human life; justice rooted in the common good; the recognition and protection of human rights as gifts of the Creator; care for the poor, the neglected, and the vulnerable; and the obligation of love for one another.

Prof. Silecchia, who has directed the Rome Program since it was first launched noted, “This year, as has been true in the past, the students and my colleagues who came to Rome had the opportunity to explore, together, some of the most complex and vexing questions of our time. I hope that they, like I, came away with both a deeper understanding of these areas of law, and with a greater appreciation for their role in shaping our world. I also hope they came away with fond memories of Rome and of the bonds they formed there.”



Summer Abroad 2018

For over twenty-five years, The Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law has offered law students from Catholic University and around the world the opportunity to enrich their academic study and preparation for professional life by offering summer legal study abroad.

In Summer 2018, CUA Law is pleased and proud to offer our International Human Rights Summer Law Program in Rome., with optional externships at international law firms.

Click here to learn more.