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Kroc lecture to focus on human rights

Author: Arts and Letters


Hannah Wu, a specialist in international human rights standards, will deliver the University of Notre Dame’s Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies 2005 Distinguished Alumni Lecture at 8p.m. Oct. 20 (Thursday) in the auditorium of the Hesburgh Center for International Studies. Titled “A Journey to Human Rights,” the lecture is free and open to the public.

Wu, a 1990 graduate of the Kroc Institute’s master’s degree program, will discuss what it takes to advance human rights at the national and international levels, and varying attitudes toward human rights. She believes that protecting human rights is about “means and will” and contends that every country has human rights violations.

Wu also will deliver a public lecture at 1p.m. Oct. 24 (Tuesday) in Room C-103 of the Hesburgh Center.

Wu has worked since 1994 at the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva, Switzerland. One of her areas of focus is technical cooperation in the field of human rights, through which the United Nations aims to assist countries in overcoming their human rights deficiencies. Most recently, she was a member of a small team that developed the United Nation’s Plan of Action in response to Secretary General Kofi Annan’s request to strengthen the human rights work of the organization.

Wu grew up in northern China, leaving in 1987 for the first time to study in the United States. Since graduating from Notre Dame, she has taught high school in Washington, D.C., worked for a women’s organization in Geneva, taken part in the U.N. peace keeping mission in Cambodia, and worked in the Office of the U.N High Commissioner for Refugees.

Originally published by Julie Titone at on October 14, 2005.