Giving refugees a second chance

Updated: Aug 7, 2019

Adrienne Smith, Immigration and Settlement Studies MA alumna

Typically, the fruits of Adrienne Smith’s labours as an immigration lawyer emerge years later, when she sees her refugee clients thriving as new Canadian residents.

As a partner at Battista Smith Migration Law Group, Smith specializes in LGBTQ immigration issues and often represents LGBTQ refugees before the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB). Her career stems from the Immigration and Settlement Studies (ISS) MA program.

“The ISS program cemented my aspirations in becoming an immigration lawyer and gave me the tools and confidence to pursue that career with unwavering focus,” says Smith. “The ISS faculty, under Dr. Myer Siemiatycki’s leadership, ignited my passion for legal advocacy and set me on a career path that has been incredibly rewarding.”

For her major research paper (MRP), Smith examined the types of evidence presented at IRB refugee hearings, and the challenges of proving a claimant’s sexual orientation.

“My MRP supervisor helped focus my ideas while at the same time giving me room to develop my personal research interests,” says Smith. “I still consider my decision to enroll in the ISS program one of the best career decisions that I have made.”

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"Giving refugees a second chance" -

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