We caught up with Raven Ziegler as she completed her Master of Human Rights (MHR) degree in spring 2020. Ziegler is an enrolled member of the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe (Kul Wicasa Oyate), South Dakota. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota in 2017 and has been a student activist throughout her time on campus.
What are your plans after graduation?
I will be working with the International Secretariat of Amnesty International in partnership with the University of Minnesota's Human Rights Lab. In my role, I will be conducting research on the nexus of business and human rights accountability, “Prosecuting Corporate Crimes.” This project will examine the international capacity to impose legal duties – supported by judicable authority – onto corporate entities for human rights abuses.
What about longer-term goals?
I hope to publish work on corporate accountability and human rights enforcement mechanisms. Furthermore, I hope to be an active participant in future business and human rights treaty negotiations.
Why did you decide to attend the Humphrey School?
I chose to attend the Humphrey School because it offers one of the only human rights master’s degree programs in the nation. Furthermore, Minnesota’s legacy of foundational human rights work provided the opportunity to work alongside leading human rights advocates and practitioners.
What was your most important takeaway from your time at the Humphrey School?
I was honored to be a part of a radical community working towards equitable human advancement in the realms of development, human rights, policy, and security. Throughout my time at the Humphrey School, I’ve learned that the most transformative work does not happen in the classroom. We must take the knowledge and skills we’ve acquired in this uniquely privileged space, back into our communities. Our work begins there.