Transitional Justice Leadership Program

The Transitional Justice Leadership Program, developed in consultation with leading figures in the transitional justice field, provides an opportunity for LLM students to engage with CHRGJ’s Project on Transitional Justice through coursework, scholarship, and internships. CHRGJ’s Project on Transitional Justice, led by Pablo de Greiff, brings together teaching, research, conferences, and student field work on criminal trials, truth commissions, institutional reform and reparations programs in transitional democracies, ranging from East Timor and Iraq to Sierra Leone and Peru and, most recently, those countries impacted by the “Arab Spring.”

Each year, a select group of students is chosen to take part in the Transitional Justice Leadership Program. Transitional Justice Scholars are guaranteed enrollment in two courses that comprise the classroom component of the program. This past year, scholars enrolled in a seminar entitled Transitional Justice, which offered insight into the legal, moral, and political issues that nations must confront as they seek to come to terms with a legacy of human rights abuse. During the Spring semester, scholars participated in a seminar entitled Case Studies in Transitional Justice, which provides a detailed analysis of transitional justice initiatives in more than a dozen countries.

In addition to these two classes, during the academic year scholars receive guidance in: developing research projects aimed at eventual publication; obtaining academic-year internships with human rights organizations, including at NYU School of Law’s Center for Human Rights and Global Justice; and in providing research assistance to transitional justice institutions, such as the International Center for Transitional Justice. They will also be expected to develop original works of legal scholarship to submit to the Annual Emerging Human Rights Scholarship Conference, which provides students with a unique opportunity to receive detailed feedback from their peers and from experts in the field, in order to prepare work of publishable quality. In addition, as part of their affiliation with the CHRGJ, scholars will also have opportunities for collegial interaction with professors and visiting experts.  As scholars look to their time after the LL.M. program, they will also receive advisement on seeking unpaid internships in a variety of transitional justice institutions, such as truth commissions, courts, reparations programs, and local human rights organizations in countries throughout the world. Funding from NYU to pursue such opportunities is available on a competitive basis through application to the International Law and Human Rights Student Fellowship Program.

How to Apply to the Transitional Justice Leadership Program

After accepting an offer of admission and enrolling in NYU Law’s LL.M. program, there will be an opportunity to apply for the Transitional Justice Leadership Program prior to the course registration process for the academic year. Those who apply and are selected for this program are guaranteed enrollment in the two courses that comprise the coursework component, as well as offered guidance as described above. Students not selected for the program may still register for either or both of the classes through the normal registration process; however, as with all Law School courses, enrollment is not guaranteed and is highly competitive.

Deadline and instructions for the 2017-2018 academic year will be posted soon.

2016-2017 Transitional Justice Scholars


Claudia Henfry holds an LLB (Honors) and BA (Honors) from the University of Western Australia, where she developed a particular interest in international human rights law and transitional justice. As part of her honors dissertation she analyzed the use of amnesties as part of transitional justice measures. Prior to graduating, Claudia completed an internship at the UN’s Office of Legal Affairs in New York. She is admitted to practice in Western Australia, and has worked as a judge’s associate at the Supreme Court of Western Australia and in the litigation department of a national commercial law firm. After graduating from NYU this year she will be complete a summer internship at the International Law Commission in Geneva.


Emilio Gallardo Cornejo graduated magna cum laude from the Universidad de Especialidades Espíritu Santo (UEES) in Ecuador, where he was awarded a scholarship and Dean’s List and President’s List awards for academic excellence. He completed his first Master Degree in Constitutional Law at UEES, in which his legal thesis regarding judicial proceedings for fundamental rights protection was published by the University in 2014. In 2016 he was awarded with the Fulbright Scholarship to pursue a Master Degree in the United States. Since 2011, he has been working at an Ecuadorian law firm, primarily in the areas of corporate law, civil law, and constitutional law. He has litigated at different court levels in Ecuador, including the Constitutional Court. Additionally, he was legal advisor of the Chamber of Industries of Guayaquil from 2011 to 2015, and, from 2014 to 2016 he was de Legal Director of the Ecuadorian Association of Young Entrepreneurs. Before coming to NYU to pursue his LLM in International Legal Studies, he was the Academic Coordinator of the Business Law Master’s of the UEES and lecturer in the same University.  Currently, his studies at NYU, where he was awarded with the Dean’s Graduate scholarship, focus on international human rights and international economic law.

Jorge Carlos Peniche Baqueiro is a 2016-2017 Transitional Justice Scholar as well as a a 2016-2017 CHRGJ Human Rights Scholar as well as. As a student scholar, Jorge assists the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation, and guarantees of non-recurrence and  Director of the Project on Transitional Justice,Pablo de Greiff, and the Mandate’s Research Officer, Danica Damplo. Jorge is pursuing an LLM in International Legal Studies.

Jorge graduated with honors from Universidad Marista de Mérida School of Law (Mexico) with a dissertation on the universal jurisdiction doctrine from a prosecutorial policy perspective and was granted a special mention for having ranked as the student with the best academic performance in the Law Schools’ history. During his university years, Jorge obtained first place in the first National Moot Court Competition on Adversarial Litigation Skills convened in the context of Mexico’s transition to a new criminal justice system. Prior to attending NYU School of Law, Jorge worked as research fellow in the National Institute of Criminal Sciences and served as advisor for the Director General of Constitutional Affairs at the Mexican Office of the Attorney General. There, he primarily focused on litigation before the Supreme Court of Justice and consultancy in international criminal law and human rights. He has published on the role of Latin-American constitutional courts as guarantors of conventional obligations in the domestic setting.

Jorge has been also selected as a NYU International Law and Human Rights Fellow for 2016-2017. His academic interest aims for bridging different standpoints on the impunity phenomenon’s study, from legal theory and constitutional adjudication in times of transition to the development of mechanisms to prosecute atrocity crimes.

María Francisca Gallegos-Anda Naranjo graduated top of her class at the Universidad de Especialidades Espíritu Santo (UEES) in Ecuador, where she was conferred the prestigious Dean’s List award for academic excellence. During her university years, she participated in the International Arbitration Team and the National Arbitration Team of the UEES as a member and coach, respectively. She also interned in top law firms in Guayaquil-Ecuador, which formed her administrative and civil law background. From 2012 to 2014, she was Teacher Assistant for the Constitutional Law II: Constitutional Theory course; was the Senior In-House Lawyer for a social housing development project; and a practitioner in the Department of Crimes against People and Constitutional Guarantees at the District Attorney’s Office of Guayas. In 2015, she was hired by the largest telecommunications corporation in Ecuador as the Senior Lawyer as a legal coordinator and strategist for litigious procedures nationwide. Currently, María Francisca is a candidate for LLM in International Legal Studies at NYU, with a particular interest on international economic law and civil rights.

Sherin Shefik is a legal adviser at the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office. She previously worked at the Office of the Co-Prosecutors for the UN Assistance to the Khmer Rouge Trials in Cambodia; at the Home Office as a legal adviser and counter-terrorist policy adviser; as a pupil barrister at 11KBW; and at a human rights NGO in London. As the 2016 recipient of Fulbright’s international law award and a Hauser Global scholar, Sherin is currently pursuing a Masters in International Legal Studies at New York University School of Law.


Past Transitional Justice Scholars