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National Student Program

Join PHR’s National Student Program and register your school’s chapter.

PHR’s National Student Program engages medical students and other young health professionals from across the United States who are interested in the intersection of health and human rights. The program provides medical students with the necessary resources and training to develop the skills and experience required to advocate for human rights.

Students organize local, direct actions on human rights issues; raise awareness on their campuses, in local communities, and in the media; organize educational events; and urge elected officials to take action through lobby days and by responding to PHR action alerts. PHR student chapters on medical school campuses represent every region of the country, indicating sincere interest in the intersection of health and human rights among young people. Since they represent the next generation of medical professionals, PHR is fortunate to have such a vibrant community of students interested in using their skills to support rights for all.

PHR collaborates with the student chapters through on-campus trainings in human rights at PHR’s asylum clinics at select universities, and by participating in national student conferences. Each chapter has its own set of leaders and organizes awareness-raising activities, educational events, and actions to promote human rights. Students are encouraged to develop their own projects in consultation with the national office, and all PHR chapters are encouraged to seek recognition from their university to facilitate the promotion of human rights education in their training as health professionals. You can learn more about the student program by visiting their website.

The program is overseen by PHR’s National Student Advisory Board. Members of the board bring a diverse range of experience and backgrounds to the program.

The program has created PHR Toolkits to provide students with relevant information and tools:

Physicians for Human Rights Welcomes UN Vote Halting Bloodshed in Syria (February 24, 2018)

As the UN Security Council today unanimously passed a resolution aimed at halting the bloodshed in Syria (SCR 2401), including in the besieged region of eastern Ghouta, where five successive days of bombing have killed hundreds of people, PHR put out the following statement.

Medical and Humanitarian Organizations Use Three Billboards to Call on UN to Stop Violence in Syria (February 22, 2018)

A coalition of medical and humanitarian organizations, some working inside besieged eastern Ghouta, have urged the United Nations Security Council to vote for an immediate cessation of hostilities to allow urgent humanitarian assistance to all areas in need in Syria.

PHR Demands Cessation of Hostilities in Syria (February 21, 2018)

As the Syrian area of eastern Ghouta suffered a third successive day of relentless bombing, with reports of hundreds of civilian deaths and more than a dozen health care facilities targeted, Physician for Human Rights put out the following statement, attributable to Director of International Policy and Partnerships Susannah Sirkin.

PHR Calls on Full Senate to Pass Burma Human Rights and Freedom Act (February 8, 2018)

Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) today praised the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for advancing the Burma Human Rights and Freedom Act of 2017 (S.2060) and urged the full Senate to pass the bill without delay.

More -General News »

DNA Technology and the Denial of Justice for Survivors of Sexual Violence (November 29, 2017)

DNA analysis is often lauded as an invaluable tool for prosecutors. But it’s not a panacea, and our exaggerated dependence on it threatens to derail countless cases of sexual violence.

PHR Awarded 2017 Dodd Prize in Human Rights (November 28, 2017)

On November 2, 2017, Physicians for Human Rights received the 2017 Thomas J. Dodd Prize in International Justice and Human Rights at the University of Connecticut’s Thomas J. Dodd Research Center in Storrs, Connecticut. As part of the formal award ceremony, former U.S. Senator Christopher Dodd and the Center’s leadership presented PHR Executive Director Donna McKay and board chairman Kerry Sulkowicz with the award.

“Our Work Isn’t Finished Yet” (October 9, 2017)

Twenty years ago, the Norwegian Nobel Committee announced it would award the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize to the International Campaign to Ban Landmines and the campaign’s coordinator, Jody Williams, for their work in securing a landmark treaty to ban antipersonnel mines globally. Physicians for Human Rights (PHR), as a founding member of the Campaign, shared in the prize.

Reconciliation and Justice in Northern Iraq (September 26, 2017)

I still remember it vividly. Just over three years ago, in August 2014, I woke up to the news that ISIS – also known as the Islamic State – had launched unprecedented, orchestrated attacks on Yazidi villages in Northern Iraq. Being from Syria, a country plagued by ISIS, I knew very well how ruthless these fighters are. But what happened to the Yazidis exceeded my most pessimistic predictions.

More -General Posts »

Joint Letter to Turkish President Erdoğan Condemning Persecution of Medical Professionals (January 2018)

PHR has signed a joint letter to Turkish President Erdoğan expressing grave concern over the ongoing persecution of the Turkish Medical Association (TMA). The TMA’s leadership was arrested this week following days of threats and protests over a recent statement by the group criticizing war as a public health threat.

PHR Remembers its Founder, Dr. Jonathan Fine (January 2018)

Dr. Jonathan Fine (1931-2018), who died in Cambridge, Massachusetts on January 17, 2018, was the founder and first executive director of Physicians for Human Rights (PHR). A primary care physician raised in Brookline, Massachusetts, Fine was already a student activist as an undergraduate at Swarthmore College, before going on to receive his medical training at Yale University and an MPH from Johns Hopkins University.

PHR and partners appeal to Kenya to curb election-linked police rape and violence (October 2017)

PHR called on the Kenyan government to take all measures to stop police from raping and assaulting civilians as they vote in presidential elections today, and to ensure access to medical care for any survivors of violence.

Unnecessary Surgery on Intersex Children Must Stop (October 2017)

Physicians for Human Rights calls for an end to all medically unnecessary surgical procedures that seek to alter gonads, genitals, or internal sex organs of intersex children, or those born with atypical sex characteristics.

More -General Research »