79 Students Start their Academic Year

12 September 2022

The 79 students enrolled in our LLM in International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights (LLM) and MAS in Transitional Justice, Human Rights and the Rule of Law (MTJ) – 41 for the LLM and 38 for the MTJ – arrived in Geneva for their orientation week before classes start on 19 September 2022.

One Week to Get the Basics

During their orientation week which runs from 12 to 16 September 2022, students will receive all the information they need about their respective programmes. They will also have the opportunity to visit the libraries of the University of Geneva and of the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies and to follow a guided tour of international Geneva.

Intercultural Communication Sessions

Students will also participate in intercultural communication sessions, a novelty of this year’s orientation week.

These sessions aim at providing students with an initial insight into their own and each other’s backgrounds and corresponding cultural sensitivities, as well as some useful tools to function effectively across cultures, think and act appropriately, and communicate and work with people from different cultural backgrounds.

‘These sessions – given by experts in intercultural communication – will also provide students with the opportunity to discuss and reflect on possible approaches on how to engage others on topics of discussion with a view to achieving a common objective, taking into account their own cultural differences and sensitivities. Such situations will often arise both in professional and non-professional contexts, potentially creating conflict and approaching them with the appropriate cultural sensitivity is a key starting point for constructive dialogue’ explains Gregory Pasche, Coordinator of Professionalizing Activities at the Geneva Academy.

Back to Normal

The start of this academic year marks a return to normal and in-person classes after two years impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘While we are very happy that all sanitary measures have been lifted and that there are no more restrictions to in-person classes, we will continue to record all classes to allow students who might be sick to follow them afterwards’ explains Professor Gloria Gaggioli, Director of the Geneva Academy.

A Diverse Student Body

Our 2022–2023 student body is characterized by a wide variety of profiles, backgrounds and countries of origin.

‘It is always a pleasure, after a long selection process, to eventually meet all our new students and welcome them to the Geneva Academy. I am always impressed by the diversity – not only in geographical terms but also academically and professionally – of our student body, which really enriches our programmes’ says Professor Gloria Gaggioli, Director of the Geneva Academy.


The 2022–2023 LLM class has 41 students from 24 countries: Afghanistan, Argentina, Armenia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Netherlands, Pakistan, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Ukraine, United States, Zimbabwe.


The 2022–2023 MTJ class has 38 students from 29 countries: Afghanistan, Albania, Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, Colombia, Egypt, France, Georgia, Guatemala, India, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lesotho, Malawi, Nepal, Rwanda, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Switzerland, Thailand, The Philippines, Uganda, United States, and Yemen.

28 Scholarships

11 students from the LLM and 17 from the MTJ received a full or partial scholarship. These are allocated through a highly competitive process based on criteria established by the scholarship donors, which notably include academic merit, extracurricular achievements and the candidate’s financial needs.

New Optional Courses and Faculty Members

Several new optional courses have been introduced for this academic year and can be followed by students of both programmes (LLM and MTJ).

These include a course on the law of weaponry and new military technologies by our Swiss IHL Chair Professor Marco Roscini, a course on non-state armed groups by Professor Sandesh Sivakumaran, a course on gender and international crimes by Sareta Ashraph, a course on humanitarian skills by Vincent Bernard and a course on the sociology of justice by Professor Damien Scalia.

‘Optional courses allow us to renew our offer and address – besides the basics provided by core courses – topical issues and questions that are essential for anyone wishing to work in the humanitarian or human rights fields’ explains Gloria Gaggioli.

‘We’re very pleased to welcome in our faculty leading scholars and practitioners like Professor Sivakumaran, Professor Marco Roscini or Sareta Ashraph and also to have a new course by Vincent Bernard dedicated to developing humanitarian skills; the next generation of humanitarian experts needs not only to acquire expert knowledge but also to develop special skills, such as advocacy, communication, and negotiation’ she adds.

Career Coaching and Counselling

Students of both programmes will have access, throughout the academic year, to many professionalizing and career counselling activities, aimed at preparing for their entry into the professional world.

These notably include group sessions to provide general advice on seeking employment and guidance in approaching and planning a career, individual counselling with our Coordinator of Professionalizing Activities Gregory Pasche, sessions to exchange with alumni, as well as soft skills training.

‘This is a novelty we introduced in the previous academic year and will continue this year as it is essential to familiarize our students with the various opportunities and challenges out there and prepare them for a career in the humanitarian, human rights and transitional justice fields’ underlines Gloria Gaggioli.

A Later Start for the Executive Master in International Law in Armed Conflict

Our online Executive Master in International Law in Armed Conflict – a part-time programme designed for professionals – will start on 28 September 2022. Applications for this programme are closed and we expect around 40 practitioners to join us online.


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