Skip to main content

Center for Human Rights - Celebrating 15 Years! Students • Partners • Research

UW Center for Human Rights Annual Report 2021-2022

UWCHR students, alumni, and activities past and present. Photo Credit/ Jessica Rose, Nate Gowdy, Corinne Thrash, UW Photo Libraries, UWCHR, La Resistencia, Flightradar24.
UWCHR students, alumni, and activities past and present. Photo Credit/ Jessica Rose, Nate Gowdy, Corinne Thrash, UWCHR, Flightradar24.

October 20, 2022

Letter from the Director

Lately I’ve been contemplating history as cyclical rather than linear. In part this is because I’ve found myself frustrated by the fits and starts of teaching during Covid-19. (We’re on Zoom! Now we’re in person! Now back on Zoom!) We are all eager to leave the pandemic behind, yet it lingers, transforms, resurfaces. In my human rights work, too, I’ve been looking for ways to find wisdom in nature, as we clearly need to dig deeper to confront long-term justice struggles.

In a university setting, of course, it’s easy to see time as operating cyclically. Each autumn, as the leaves begin to fall, new students fill our classrooms; when it’s cold and wet outside, it’s their questions and ideas and energies that carry us through the fallow months. And when summer sends us spilling out onto our lawns, we dispatch a new crop of graduates into the sunshine.

This relentless renewal is both hopeful and challenging: at the Center for Human Rights, I have to confess that with every graduation, a selfish part of me secretly laments the departure of what seems to be the “best ever” crop of human rights researchers. Yet as the seasons turn, I always find myself impressed anew with the students who take their places. This past year, for example, we invested $348,022 in current students and sent off a new crop of terrific graduates, but we also welcomed freshmen (welcome, Priya!) and a new staff member into the fold. Andrea Marcos is our Center’s first-ever communications manager; we’re excited about her commitment to collective justice and creative communications.

Of course, there are setbacks in human rights work, too. One example is the justice work we’ve accompanied in El Salvador; while confronting rising dictatorship, our partners are exploring ways to learn from past struggles, and to amass strength for future ones. Here in Seattle, as we confront deepening challenges of climate change, our collaborators in Native communities are helping students cultivate new, more sustainable relationships with nature going forward. And in Washington State and around the country, the gains of the migrant justice movement, while impressive, require continual monitoring and advocacy to ensure they bear fruitso we’re redoubling our existing research while trying out some new approaches, too.

I thank you for supporting what we do, in the moments it makes headlines and the seasons we spend gathering strength. Both forms of growth and renewal are necessary as we continue, together, our work to birth a better world. 

Angelina Snodgrass Godoy

Helen H. Jackson Chair in Human Rights
Director, Center for Human Rights
Professor of International Studies and Law, Societies, and Justice

Inside this Issue