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Two 2019 LL.M. Graduates Selected for the Edmund S. Muskie Internship Program

Posted on Monday 6/3/2019
Chiora Taktakishvili and Kate Halenko

Master of Laws in American Law graduates Kate Halenko LL.M. ’19 (Ukraine) and Chiora Taktakishvili LL.M. ’19 (Georgia) recently began their summer placements in the Edmund S. Muskie Internship Program. The program extends their time in the United States beyond graduation in May to enable them to participate in internships that are aligned with their academic and career goals.

“The Muskie program is an excellent opportunity for Kate and Chiora to gain valuable hands-on experiences that put into practice what they have been learning in the classroom,” said Andrew Horsfall, Assistant Dean of International Programs, Syracuse University College of Law. “The goal is for the students to return to their home countries with even greater knowledge and perspectives in their chosen fields of law.”

Halenko is interning at Sayari Analytics in Washington, DC, as a Eurasia Team Analyst to support ongoing projects for government, financial sector, and multinational clients. She is working with a team of regional and subject-matter experts, tackling complex investigations of illicit networks across the world.

“After an extensive career in human rights protection and humanitarian relief operations, I studied at Syracuse Law to focus on the other side of the human rights equation, namely national security and counterterrorism studies. It seems odd that how in our turbulent times and fragile world people working on either side of the barricades, so to speak, rarely talk to each other, except for attacking each other's positions. I am interested in bridging that chasm with the help of changing current policies,” says Halenko. “I hope this internship will make it easier for me to pursue the job of my dream after valuable experiences at Sayari.”

Taktakishvili is interning at the Columbia University Institute for the Study of Human Rights. She is working with the Human Rights Advocates program, which brings prominent human rights defenders from all over the world to the Columbia University to provide grassroots leaders the tools, knowledge, access, and networks to promote the realization of human rights and strengthen their respective organizations.

“For human rights defenders in countries with poor human rights records, sometimes international partnership and networks are the only support system available. My plan is to enable Georgian-American peer-to-peer networking and cooperation through human rights education projects, while also contributing to filling the gaps in human rights education, especially in minority rights and non-discrimination law,” says Taktakishvili. “The Muskie Internship program provides a unique opportunity to fulfill my future carrier goals, be immersed in an American working environment and test our new knowledge and academic skills in practice.”

The Edmund S. Muskie Internship Program is a summer internship program funded by the U.S. Department of State that provides emerging leaders from Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, and Central Asia with the opportunity to gain real-world experience complementing and enriching their graduate studies in the United States.