Summer Study Abroad

Yale-NUS Summer Institute in Global Strategy and Leadership

The Yale-NUS Global Summer Institute presents

Global Conflicts and Human Rights

This 2MC course taught by Yale faculty member and award-winning journalist Janine di Giovanni examine several conflicts – Bosnia and Syria in particular but with reference to a number of others – through the lens of human rights. In addition to readings covering humanitarian intervention, case studies of human rights abuses and contemporary accounts of the conflicts and crises, the professor will use her on-the-ground knowledge of these conflicts, on which she reported extensively. The course will dig deep into the roots of the conflicts, examine the diplomatic and international response, political solutions and post-conflict resolutions and ask the question: what are the lessons learnt from previous wars. Students will have the opportunity to choose another conflict on which to conduct their own research.

The Global Summer Institute then moves to New Haven for a two-week experiential leadership program at Yale on human rights. Students will interact with thought leaders and leading Yale faculty members who examine the nexus between human rights and areas such as the environment, business, health, and legal theory. They will also meet with local organizations to see how human rights work is undertaken and some of the challenges. A trip to New York to meet with leading international organizations in the human right space is a highlight of the program. Skill building sessions will help students build competency in areas like negotiation and observation. In New Haven, students will have the option of meeting with program representatives from Yale Law School, the School of Public Health, the School of Management, and others to learn about post-graduate study.

** The Singapore-based course content is pending Yale-NUS Curriculum Committee review.


About the Professor:

Janine di Giovanni is a professor at Yale’s Jackson School and the award-winning author of “The Morning They Came for Us: Dispatches from Syria,” as well as eight other books largely focused on human rights and conflict.  She is the former Middle East editor of Newsweek and was the Edward R. Murrow Press Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. In 2016, she was awarded the Courage in Journalism Award for her distinguished work in war zones focusing on tracking war criminals over the past 25 years, most recently, Syria. In 2018, she was a Professor of Practice, Human Rights, at Columbia University SIPA.

Prof di Giovanni worked as a war reporter beginning in the late 1980s, and has reported more than 18 conflicts in depth as well as working in 140 countries. She has also worked for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and Iraq, heading a team to research and write extended reports on Syrian women refugees. She is the recipient of two Amnesty International Awards and 9 other awards for her body of work, including the National Magazine Award for her work during the Kosovo war. She is currently working on a book about the eradication of Christians in the Middle East as well as being a Contributing Op Ed writer for the New York Times; Harper’s, the Guardian, and the New York Review of Books.

Eligibility and Selection Criteria

The Summer Institute is open to students from all academic disciplines and majors. Priority will be given to first and second year students – however, third year students (and fourth year DDP students) are also welcome to apply. Applicants should be in good academic and disciplinary standing. Successful applicants will demonstrate the following in a 300-word essay:

  • How and why study in the chosen programme fits into their academic, professional or personal development
  • Plan to carry learning forward through further study or application of skills/knowledge gained
  • Ability to serve as a good ambassador for Yale-NUS College; adaptability, flexibility
  • Intent to bring learning back to Yale-NUS College and share with the community
  • Essays must be clear, well-written and grammatically correct

There are 40 spots available in the Summer Institute for 2020.

Writing Resource

Wondering what the review committee is looking for in an application? Check out our Summer scholarship application tips. It has the essence of what we share with students in advising sessions.


CIPE will cover:

  • room and board in Singapore for non-Singaporean students
  • room and board in New Haven for all students
  • course-related fees
  • mandatory health insurance

The student will be expected to cover:

  • airfare
  • US visa application fee, if relevant
  • personal expenses

Students may apply for need-based financial assistance to help offset costs of this program. The application for financial assistance is released after offers are extended. 


Students will receive 2 Yale-NUS MCs for the four-week course.

Timeline and Process

      • Mid Jan: Online application will open on this web page
      • 1 Feb: Application deadline (5pm)
      • Early – mid Feb: Committee meets to select recipients
      • Mid – late Feb: Applicants notified of decisions; recipients have a week to confirm decision to participate
      • Apr: Students selected are to attend all mandatory CIPE Summer Orientation sessions
      • Mid May – Mid June: Summer Institute held in Singapore for two weeks, followed by two weeks in New Haven (four weeks in t0tal)
      • 10 Aug 2020: First day of classes at Yale-NUS College


Click here to Apply Now.

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