Meet our multi-national and interdisciplinary team of human rights student practitioners
Background: International Development
Katarina has a background in International Development with an emphasis in Latin American Studies at the University of Guelph, with semesters spent in Guatemala and Germany. She is interested in the construction of identity, and its relationship with cultural concepts such as hybridization, that work to resist and combat the oppression and exclusion of colonial legacies, and subvert dominant narratives.
“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back.”
– Albert Camus –
Background: International Relations
Juliana has an academic background in International Relations and professional experience in research, marketing and volunteering exchange programmes. She is particularly interested in conflict management, women’s rights and migration issues.
“If nothing saves us from death, at least love should save us from life.”
– Pablo Neruda –
Emran has studied law in Lillehammer University in Norway. Emran is passionate about how Human rights can bring change to the lives of those who are not aware that such rights exist, and to see a world where every person can choose to live according to their desire. Nobody should be displaced because of the color of their skin, religion, hunger or war, because “Those who practice love have neither religion or status”.
“Out Beyond Idea of Wrongdoing and Rightdoing there is a field. I will meet you there. When the soul lies Down in that Grass the world is too full to talk about. Idea, language, even the phrase Each Other does not make any sense”.
– Moulana Jalalod-din Balkhi Mohammad Rumi –
Kaitlyn comes to the Bridge with an academic background in Rhetoric and six years of professional experience in marketing and higher education enrollment in the U.S. She is interested in how narratives both shape identities within communities and how they drive action. Her move to human rights was motivated by a desire to equip herself with the knowledge necessary to generate change, in particular within higher education accessibility in the U.S.
“I don’t want a straw; I want real human moments.”
– from Richard Linklater’s film, Waking Life –
Antonio Blanco Fernández
Studied law in Spain and Belgium, but would prefer to be identified as an avid reader and chocolate gourmet. He wants everybody to have freedom of expression so that they can write books for him to read. His other major interest is the right to self-determination and culture in post-colonial context.
“A quiet secluded life in the country, with the possibility of being useful to people to whom it is easy to do good, and who are not accustomed to have it done to them; then work which one hopes may be of some use; then rest, nature, books, music, love for one’s neighbour — such is my idea of happiness.”
– Leo Tolstoy –
Xcaret Estaragués Ita
Xcaret is the deputy treasurer of the Bridge. She graduated from the faculty of Law at the Barra Nacional de Abogados in Mexico City. Prior to joining the Bridge, she worked as an attorney in Mexico City and in Washington, DC. Her professional experience includes international humanitarian law, human rights, corporate, and international commercial law. She is interested in migration issues, rights of indigenous peoples and of persons with disabilities.
“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek”.
– Barack Obama –
Background: Arts and Culture
Graduate with an International Bachelor of Arts and Culture from Erasmus University in The Netherlands, as her degree might suggest, she has a strong passion for the Arts and specifically connecting the Arts with Human Rights. With special attention to the field of dance, which Clarissa has an in-depth theoretical and practical background in; she would like to bring people together through movement. She also has experience being a caretaker for children and she is deeply motivated to ensure the protection and livelihoods of children.
“The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials.”
– Confucius –
Background: International Relations and Modern History
Emma studied International Relations and Modern History at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. She believes that the study and promotion of human rights is essential in order to include those on the margins of societies. Emma is particularly interested in how the construction of discourse has historically worked to oppress and marginalise and hopes we can change and utilise this discourse to improve the rights of those who have been discriminated against.
“Go out there, and believe that you can make a mark, because you probably will. And even if you’re doing other things – you’re working for a firm, a company, a consultancy — you can still be a human rights defender in your free time. You can still be active. You can still volunteer. You can still be out there — protest; speak. And the interesting thing is that at the end of your career, you’ll probably look back and value that part of it more than everything else that you’ve done.”
– Prince Zeid bin Ra’ad Zeid al-Hussein –
The lover of stars, people, and mushrooms. Psychologist by vocation, human right defender by nature. Interested in how humans construct the world around them, and how the world constructs the humans in it. Believes that relationships and interactions are everything, and tries to build strong and meaningful bonds with everything around him.
“Keep your face always toward the sunshine – and shadows will fall behind you.”
– Walt Whitman –
Victoria Vaamonde Villar Schor
Victoria has a bachelor’s degree in Law from the Potifícia Universidade de São Paulo in Brazil and an LLM in European and Global Law from Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Spain. She also studied at the Hague Academy of International Law in the Netherlands. Her major interests are in international human rights and humanitarian law and the rights of people in areas of armed conflict, and how environmental issues interact with the notion human rights.
“Whatever is my right as a man is also the right of another; and it becomes my duty to guarantee as well as to possess.”
– Thomas Paine, Rights of Man –