Class I (2003-2004)

8. Rebecca Milligan

Sponsor Club: United States, District 6310

To work towards the protection of human rights, safeguard the wellbeing of refugees and find lasting solutions to their plight are the cardinal points around which Rebecca intends to plan her career. The experiences she has had in the past few years have done much to solidify this conviction and aspiration. Rebecca was a Fulbright Scholar (2000-2001) in Russia, where she documented the plight of displaced Chechens fleeing the war in Chechenya. In Russia, she also assisted the Red Cross Center for Refugees by interviewing asylum seekers from Afghanistan. She then worked for Human Rights Watch in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, where she assisted the organization in the documentation of torture, arbitrary detention and religious persecution. Most recently, she processed claims for refugee status at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Cairo, Egypt in 2004.  Additionally, she has worked on a prison reform project, at a Holocaust Memorial Museum and as a labor union organizer. Rebecca holds a Bachelor's Degree from the Honors Program at the University of Michigan with Highest Honors and a Master' Degree from the European University at St. Petersburg (Russia) with Distinction. She speaks German, Russian, Uzbek and Arabic. 

Rebecca is convinced that a respect for human rights is an integral part of achieving sustainable peace and she looks forward to continuing work towards this goal upon graduation.  She hopes to put her Arabic language skills to use through assisting the International Committee Of The Red Cross (ICRC) in Hebron in its efforts to monitor the respect of international humanitarian law in the West Bank in the first half of 2005.  Beginning in August of 2005, she intends to expand further on her experiences as a Rotary World Peace Scholar in the field of human rights by training Burmese refugees in human rights advocacy for Earth Rights International in Chiangmai, Thailand.