The Immigration & Refugee Law Intensive exposes students to a challenging series of clinical placements, hands-on simulations, seminars, and supervised research that reflect on contemporary issues of international migration. The program’s objective is to assist students to critically assess the underlying tenets of this rapidly evolving body of public law, and the roles that lawyers play in the design and implementation of immigration and refugee law.
There are three modules to the program: advanced immigration law, advanced refugee law and an external placement. The first two modules each consist of two weeks of seminars that consider specialized topics in domestic and international law.
The third module is a six-week external placement. Students are placed with mentors in advocacy, institutional and adjudicative settings. The goal of the placements is to advance students’ understanding of immigration and refugee law from the perspective of advocates, policy officials and decision-makers and to allow students to apply the knowledge they have gained in the areas of immigration and refugee law. Some of the past and current placements include the Federal Court of Canada, the UNHCR, the Immigration and Refugee Board, Green and Speigel and others.
Following the external placement, students return for the concluding weeks of the program. The students are given an opportunity to share and discuss their placement experiences and to complete a research paper on a chosen topic of immigration or refugee law.