Skip to content

Programs : Brochure

This page is the brochure for your selected program. You can view the provided information for this program on this page and click on the available buttons for additional options.
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • Restrictions: DPU applicants only
  • Click for Tuition + Program Fee: Summer
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Program Type: Short-term Academic Level: Graduate
Recommended GPA: 2.5 Living Arrangements: Hotel
Liberal Studies Domain: None
Program Description:

In the Chiapas Human Rights Practicum students learn firsthand about the legal, political, economic, and social circumstances and context of human rights as people exercise and live them on a daily basis, as well as the results of the violation of those rights by government, international corporations, and individuals and sometimes neighbors. Chiapas is the poorest state in Mexico, with low educational attainment, high infant mortality, and widespread subsistence farming. It is among three states with the largest population of indigenous residents, with great cultural and linguistic diversity.

At the same time, Chiapas has immense resource wealth, the largest fresh water reserves in Mexico, and unparalleled biological diversity. From its location in southern Mexico, on the Guatemalan border, Chiapas has become the crossing point for immigrants from across Central and South America and other countries who are hoping to make and survive the treacherous journey north. All of these factors have a devastating effect on quality of life and the exercise of human rights. In 1994 citizens rose up in the Zapatista rebellion against the federal government to create an autonomous government to provide for the people and for their needs and rights. That movement lives on today, and students will also learn of its many successes—in the face of continuing pressure and violence from the state.

Students also can hope to meet with practicing lawyers and drop in at human rights law offices and state court, to visit and learn from leaders of nongovernmental organizations working to protect rights, to travel to rural indigenous communities and hear their stories, and to be inspired by the perseverance and creativity of all those working to create sustainable social justice and change for a world that has room for all of us.

Before traveling to Chiapas, students will learn about the history and context of human rights there, as well as the 1994 uprising of the Zapatistas, a movement that has inspired social justice and human rights work around the world.


Katherine Faydash has been part of the Chiapas Human Rights Practicum since 2006. She lived in Chiapas from 2005 until 2014, working to facilitate learning by law students and others around a variety of experiences in human rights law as well as other legal areas, such as family, environmental, and immigration law.

All students will be enrolled in the following course:
Course LAW 208: Human Rights Practicum in Chiapas, Mexico
Credits TBD
Term registered Spring 2020
Taught by Katherine Faydash
Course description Explore legal, social, political, economic, and historical circumstances of human rights law and violations in Chiapas and Mexico, with a view toward social justice. Visit practicing lawyers and community leaders as they respond to and create law that addresses human rights issues and violations, including through autonomy and solidarity.
Additional course information Students participating in the summer-long program will receive a stipend.
Please note that although some courses are registered in a particular term, some coursework or final assignments may be due in a different term. E.g. Course registered in winter quarter, but coursework is due in spring quarter once the travel component of the program is complete.

Students stay in a lovely, family-run hotel in San Cristobal’s Centro, just steps from the Zocalo. The hotel has free Wifi and a small kitchen.

We spend half our time in the beautiful colonial city of San Cristobal de Las Casas, visiting law offices, lawyers and professors, nongovernmental organizations, artists, and others working in the area of human rights. The other half of our time involves day trips from San Cristobal to surrounding towns and rural areas, including a coffee farm, to meet with indigenous organizers and others working from the ground up for human rights and justice.


All students participating in study abroad will be charged both tuition (billed at the regular DePaul tuition rate, based on the number of credits enrolled) and a program fee. Please read the program fee details carefully to understand exactly what is included, as this can vary from program to program. If the program fee is posted, be sure to note whether the fee is current or from a previous year (past program fees may serve as a guide until the current program fee is available). If the current program fee has not yet been posted, please check back closer to the application deadline. Please also note the withdrawal policy.

DePaul offers several types of scholarships for students studying abroad, and students should visit the scholarship page early in the application process for information on eligibility and deadlines.


If you are planning to study abroad and do not have a passport, apply for one immediately. Some programs require students to obtain student visas. In that case, contact the country's local consulate or embassy for up-to-date instructions. As of this publication, students traveling with US passports on the Mexico: Chiapas Human Rights Practicum program DO NOT need a visa. Please note that visa requirements can change quickly. Study Abroad will update this website to reflect changes as they become available.

Here are some helpful tips from former students who have participated in this program:
  • Prepare to go with the flow on the trip, as things are subject to change and the best thing you can do is maintain a positive attitude.
  • It can get very hot, so be sure to drink lots of water.
  • Brush up on basic Spanish to make communicating with locals easier.


Questions about this program? Contact your study abroad advisor, Dominique Brown at or visit during open advising hours.

DePaul University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, or handicap in admissions, employment, or the provision of services. Inquiries regarding this policy should be addressed to the Director of Human Resources, 1 East Jackson Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60604.

Circumstances, such as an unexpected event abroad or a curriculum change, may require DePaul University to make changes to the program. DePaul University reserves the right to cancel or alter programs and courses without notice.

Dates / Deadlines:

Thank you for your interest in this program! We are not currently accepting applications. In general, applications open about 6 months before program application deadlines.

This program is currently not accepting applications.