University of Manitoba to launch first of its kind human rights program

By UM Today, photo by John Morgan

The University of Manitoba is developing a new master’s degree program that will help Winnipeg take its place as the leading city for human rights education and scholarship in Canada.
The envisioned new master of human rights program will be a partnership between five faculties (Graduate Studies, Arts, Law, Education, and Social Work) and three centres (Centre for Human Rights Research, Mauro Centre for Peace and Justice, and the National Research Centre for Truth and Reconciliation).
“It’s exciting and timely to see the development of a new master’s degree program attract the participation of so many disciplines and faculties across the university,” notes University of Manitoba president and vice-chancellor, David Barnard. “This level of interdisciplinary co-operation and partnership yields outcomes with far-reaching impact. It is indeed an area that is important for all of our province’s educational institutions and will open doors to positive dialogue and collaboration.”
The University of Manitoba master of human rights (MHR) program would be broadly interdisciplinary, branching into the social sciences, sciences and humanities, taking advantage of expertise in the university’s professional schools, including medicine, social work, education, nursing and law.
The MHR program would prepare students to be educators, practitioners, researchers, investigators, professionals and public intellectuals who integrate human rights perspectives in their careers in the private and/or public sectors. Many Canadians now working internationally in the human rights field studied overseas because of the lack of graduate programs in Canada.
Drawing on existing expertise at the University of Manitoba, where human rights is already an area of research strength, students could concentrate on Indigenous rights and natural resources; domestic and international law; human rights education; organizational management and human rights; environment, health and human rights; sexual and reproductive rights; human rights and science; genocide and crimes against humanity; global human rights or human migration, among many others.
The MHR program would be well-placed at the University of Manitoba with the opening of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights this fall and that of the National Research Centre for Truth and Reconciliation at the U of M in 2015.
It is anticipated that the MHR program proposal will enter the university’s review and approval process in 2015.
Visit the University of Manitoba’s news site umtoday.ca for more program-related information.

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