President Joe Biden Visits UConn’s Center for Human Rights

The Dodd Center is a Fundamental Research Facility at UConn.

Clara Sorkin

The Dodd Center is a Fundamental Research Facility at UConn.

Clara Sorkin, News Section Editor

The Dodd Center is a Fundamental Research Facility at UConn. (Clara Sorkin)

Every year, Hall sends a large portion of the graduating class to continue their education at the University of Connecticut (UConn). UConn’s popularity stems from its accessible in-state tuition, highly ranked sports teams, and its celebrated research facilities. 

Among such facilities is the Dodd Center for Human Rights, formerly the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center. The Dodd Center educates one of the largest human rights majors in the country. It also hosts programs on activism, civic education, and of course, human rights. 

The namesake of this center, Thomas J. Dodd, served as a Senator and Representative for the state of Connecticut perhaps; but, what he is most known for is his role in the Nuremberg Trials, the military tribunals that prosecuted former Nazis and others heavily involved in the Holocaust. Due to the success of the prosecution, Dodd was praised for his role in the trials, and, along with the other counsel, for his dedication to human rights, equality, and justice. 

Thus, years after Dodd passed away, then-President Bill Clinton dedicated UConn’s Center for Human Rights to him and all of his efforts. In August of 2021, UConn’s board of trustees came to the decision that the center would be rededicated to focus on the achievements of all the members of the Dodd family including Thomas J. Dodd’s son Christopher Dodd, who also represented Connecticut as a Senator, and Thomas J. Dodd Jr., who served as an ambassador to Uruguay and Costa Rica. 

On October 15, 2021, exactly 26 years after the original center’s dedication, the President paid a visit to the Dodd Center, as a way to commemorate the legacy of the Dodd family and their contributions to the human rights our country values. Biden spoke on the center’s mission of human rights, and noted that “the center has grown to be a leading academic center for that very mission.” 

Even after its rededication, the Dodd Center for Human Rights continues to inspire political and social change, as well as provide scholarships and research opportunities in the intersecting fields that contribute to human rights. 

The work that has been done, and continues to be done at the Dodd Center has put UConn at the forefront of human rights and activism, so if these issues are your calling, you could be one of the students headed to Storrs next year.