Humphrey Fellow Karapetyan completes affiliation with Advocates for Human Rights

University of Minnesota 2017-18 Humphrey International Fellow Ms. Varser Karapetyan of Armenia has completed a professional affiliation with The Advocates for Human Rights of Minneapolis, assisting on efforts to combat trafficking and online harassment of women.

Ms. Karapetyan is the Deputy Head of the Public Defender’s Office in Yerevan, Armenia, and has over 15 years of experience in the fields of criminal justice, research and training, human rights and administrating indigent legal aid delivery systems. She holds a PhD in Jurisprudence from Yerevan State University (Armenia), and a master’s degree in Jewish Civilizations from the University of Heidelberg (Germany). In her current role, she supervises the work of public defenders and makes high-level policy decisions for the Office of the Public Defender. Over the course of her career, she has led and participated in initiatives that have helped further the development of state-guaranteed legal aid in Armenia. Among her many achievements is the major role she recently played in launching a software program that enables centralized and uniform administration of indigent legal aid cases in Armenia. Ms. Karapetyan has conducted training on human rights for the armed forces of Armenia and has worked as a Council of Europe expert providing expert opinion on the Judicial Code of the Republic of Armenia, bringing it in line with international and European standards.

The Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program was initiated in 1978 to honor the late Senator and Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey and his lifelong commitment to international cooperation and public service. The program brings accomplished mid-career professionals from designated developing nations and emerging democracies to the United States for a year of academic study, related professional experience, and cultural exchange. The people-to-people approach to international understanding provides a basis for lasting ties between U.S. citizens and their professional counterparts in other countries and strengthens the global exchange of knowledge and experience essential to a sustainable world.

Fellowships are granted competitively to professional candidates with a commitment to public service. The program is sponsored by the United States Department of State and is administered nationally by the Institute of International Education (IIE), which assigns Fellows to a host university based upon each Fellow’s interests and needs.

Each year, about a dozen Humphrey Fellows come to the University of Minnesota’s Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs, which serves as their base for their Fellowship year. The goals of the Humphrey Fellowship Program at the University of Minnesota are:
  • to enable each Fellow to develop a program that fosters personal and professional growth and that prepares the Fellow for leadership roles in his or her country;
  • to provide opportunities for a rich exchange of information among Fellows, and also between Fellows and host families, community members, professional colleagues and students/faculty at the University;
  • to help Fellows understand as broadly and deeply as possible the U.S. cultural, political, and economic systems; and
  • to help Fellows develop a fuller sense of the global context in which they and their countries operate.
The IFS office and the Humphrey School do not administer the application process for this Fellowship. For detailed information about the fellowship and its application process, please visit the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program's website.

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