Latin American Studies Bachelor of Arts Program
Students graduating with a major in Latin American Studies go on to a variety of careers in government, business, non-profit organizations, and teaching. Many choose to attend graduate school in the social sciences, law, business or public health. Our alumni include lawyers, high school, community college and ESL teachers, university researchers, US Foreign Service and military officers, Peace Corps volunteers, translators, journalists, and employees of international divisions of corporations, financial institutions and non-governmental organizations (such as the Nature Conservancy).
In all cases students aiming for a major or a minor in Latin American Studies should consult with an advisor at the Center for Latin American Studies early on in their undergraduate program. Colin Deeds is the Assistant Director of LAS and can be reached at email@example.com or (520) 626-7234. Kathryn Gallien is the LAS undergraduate Academic Advisor in SBS and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (520) 626-3344. They can recommend names of current students and alumni who can talk to you about the major. Many students complete a double major, combining a degree in Latin American Studies with one in History, Spanish, Sociology, Political Science or Geography, for example. A number of our majors are honors students, and we work to develop an appropriate and challenging program for these students who are often able to obtain scholarships and awards.
Although most Latin American Studies-related courses do not have prerequisites, students planning to major in the field are strongly advised to take some of the introductory and survey courses related to Latin America at the lower-division level. We encourage all students to take LAS 150B1: Modern Latin America: Race, Rights, and Revolutions. Other Latin American related general education courses include HIST 150c2 Modern Latin America, HIST 160A1: Colonial Latin America, SPAN 160C1: The Arts and Politics in Latin America, and SPAN 160D1: Issues in Latin American Society and Popular Cultures.
Requirements for a Major in Latin American Studies
Students must complete a minimum of 30 units for the major.
Complete four courses (12 units) in Contemporary Latin American Topics:
LAS 348, 354, 363, 364, 365, and 367 meet this requirement. See the course catalog for descriptions.
Complete 12 units of elective courses. Students my complete up to 6 units of elective credit through an internship.
- Language Requirement (3 units):
Students must complete Portuguese 299 or higher, or Spanish 250 or higher.
LAS 498 Senior Capstone (3 units)
Latin American Immersion Experience: Latin American Studies majors are strongly encouraged to undertake a learning experience that directly connects them with a Latin American country and its people. Ideally, students will study abroad in Mexico, Central or South America or the Hispanic Caribbean. Summer language and cultural programs likewise provide excellent opportunities to meet this expectation. The LAS major advisor, in coordination with the Study Abroad Office, will assist students in selecting a foreign study experience. An international internship experience, even one conducted in the United States, perhaps along the border with Mexico, also would provide a valuable immersion experience.
Internships: Many students complete 3 to 6 credits of internships as part of the LAS major. For more information contact an advisor or review a list of recent internships. The LAS major advisor will work with the students in selecting and coordinating an internship. Currently, the U of A’s Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology and the local NGO Borderlinks offer transnational internship opportunities along the U.S. – Mexico border.