Human Rights Education: Reflections on my internship at the European Wergeland Centre

Marianthi Antoniou

Marianthi Antoniou, a student in the master's program Human Rights and Multiculturalism shares her experience and great outcome from her external internship at the European Wergeland Centre in Oslo.

Text by: Marianthi Antoniou, Human Rights and Multiculturalism student and Project Manager on Greek Projects at the European Wergeland Centre 

As a  student enrolled in the master's program Human Rights and Multiculturalism at the University of South-Eastern Norway in Campus Drammen, I encountered the opportunity to select among elective courses or engage in an internship, either through the University or an external organization. Opting for the latter, I embarked on an external internship at the European Wergeland Centre in Oslo, Norway, spanning from August 29 to December 20, 2023.

I am grateful for having been given the chance to be part of a family like that of the European Wergeland Centre in the role of Project Coordinator in one of our Greek Projects CAB ‘Classrooms Against Bullying’ in the Early Childhood and School Section, which led to a Project Manager position on Greek Projects at the European Wergeland Centre and a future in the field of my interest; that of Human Rights Education.

This Internship has been a lesson for me on what to expect from a working environment, what opportunities you can have within an organization, and how the relationships among colleagues can and should be. It is highly important for chances to be given to younger generations, without looking down on them, questioning them, or avoiding giving them responsibilities and I have been lucky enough to experience that. Mentorship is needed and it has been provided to me in many different contexts within these four months, coming from different colleagues.

Being encouraged in my first steps in the field that I spent years studying for and dreaming of being part of, is what motivates me to get further involved in it and continue enhancing my knowledge in the field as a lifelong process and even after graduating from the Human Rights and Multiculturalism Masters’ Degree. Having the mindset that one can never know enough is what keeps me going and I consider it as a responsibility to myself and to those I work with. I understood that it can be possible and my Masters Studies helped me on that!

I would like to especially thank my Professors Gabriela Mezzanotti, Lena Lybæk and Åsne Håndlykken-Luz for guiding through the Internship from the University’s side and Iryna Sabor and Ana Perona-Fjelstad for their mentorship and trust all these months.