The Latin American and Latino Studies Program is constantly working with the Center for International Studies and the Associate Provost for International Affairs, Dr. J. Kline Harrison, to develop opportunities for students interested in Latin American and Latino Studies to enhance their learning experience by spending time abroad. International learning experiences contribute tremendously to a students intellectual, personal and professional growth. Over 60% of undergraduate students at Wake Forest choose to Study Abroad. While abroad, students have the opportunity to develop their language skills, take classes at a foreign university in a foreign language, conduct independent research, engage in community service, participate in internship programs, travel throughout a region and immerse themselves in a different culture. The Program encourages all students to take full advantage of the many study abroad opportunities available through the Center for International Studies. Students who intend to minor in Latin American and Latino Studies are particularly encouraged to strongly consider spending a semester of summer session in Latin America.
Southern Cone: Chile and Argentina
Wake Forest’s program in the Southern Cone is the university’s newest adventure abroad. Debuting in the Spring of 2011, the program provides students with the opportunity to spend a semester exploring the fascinating and beautiful Southern region of Latin America. With a faculty member of the Latin American and Latino Studies Program as their tour guide, students will commence their journey in the capital city of Argentina, Buenos Aires, a city tremendously rich in culture and history. Here, the Wake Forest faculty member will lead a three-week intensive culture orientation course. Then, students will travel to the bustling city of Santiago, the cultural, economic and political heart of Chile, where they will spend the majority of their remaining time in Latin America. While in Santiago, students will be able to take a full course load of fifteen credit hours. Two of the courses will be cultural courses on Argentina and Chile worth 1.5 credit hours and graded on a pass or fail basis. Students must also enroll in the two classes taught by the Wake Forest faculty member travelling with the group, each worth three hours. The topic of the courses depend on the faculty members field and specialty. Additionally, students must enroll in an appropriate three hour Spanish-level course taught by a faculty member of the prestigious Universidad Diego Portales (UDP). Although Spanish is not required to participate in the program, it is recommended. The final three credits will come from either a pre-approved UDP course in the students field of interest or from an independnet study course pre-arranged with a Wake Forest faculty member prior to departure. While in Latin America, students will be staying with host families arranged by the UDP. Furthermore, students will have the opportunity to participate in several excursions to Valparaiso, Easter Island, Torres del Paine and San Pedro de Atacama. The program runs from February till June. Interested students should contact Program Coordinator Dr. Peter Siavelis or Study Abroad Advisor Ms. Jessica Francis.
For more information or to apply, please visit the program’s information page on the website of the Center for International Studies.
Latin American and Latino Studies Program faculty members, Dr. Miles Silman, Associate Professor of Biology, leads a group of students each summer on a three to four-week program in Peru, where they explore the country’s beautiful and magnificent natural and cultural diversity. By providing students with the opportunity to immerse themselves in the heartland of numerous pre-Colombian civilizations, students are able to study the ways in which nature and culture mingle as well as the ways in which the past informs the present. On this program, Dr. Silman, an expert on the ecology of the Andean region, guides students through five of Peru’s ten UNESCO World Heritage Sites where they examine the co-mingling of flora, fauna, and geology with temples, parks, and residences. Students will have the opportunity to earn a total of four credit hours: which will be derived from Dr. Silman’s BIO 349: Tropical Biodiversity course. The course is taught in English and counts towards the minor in Latin American and Latino Studies as well as the minor in Environmental Sciences. No prior study of language is required and majors in all disciplines are encouraged to apply. The program runs throughout June and students will stay in a variety of accommodations, including hotels, hostels, cabins and tents. Program itinerary changes by year. Interested students should contact Dr. Silman.
For more information or to apply, please visit the program’s information page on the website of the Center for International Studies or the Tropical Diversity blog maintained by the program’s directors.
Latin American and Latino Studies Program faculty member, Dr. Jeanne Simonelli, Professor of Anthropology, and Dr. Betsy Gatewood, Professor of Entrepreneurship, lead a group of students to explore the region of Chiapas, Mexico. This trip is no vacation, but rather an Anthropology and Entreprene urship class named “Free Trade, Fair Trade: Independent Entrepreneurs in the Global Market”. This field based seminar compares the barriers to market participation experienced by independent entrepreneurs in the US and developing countries, particularly Mexico. With a goal of assisting certain world communities with Fair Trade marketing, free trade policies will be contrasted with fair trade practices, as social science and business students share their perspectives concerning why so many independent producers have trouble succeeding in a globalizing world. In the process, students explore the meaning of the underlying ideology of both American and indigenous culture, the motives and forms of entrepreneurship and micro business in each, and the origins and exploits of corporatocracy.
The Center for International Studies works with various other universities and programs to provide students with the opportunity to study abroad in Latin America at the time and in the country that is most consistent with their graduation plans. Through partnerships with Boston University, Syracuse University, New York University, the Council on International Educational Exchange, the Institute for the International Education of Students, the Institute for Study Abroad, the International Honors Program, International Studies Abroad, the Center for Cross-Cultural Studies and SIT Study Abroad, Wake Forest allows students in every major or minor to study in cities across Peru, Ecuador, Chile, Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Mexico and Bolivia.
For a complete list of approved opportunities, visit the website of the Center for International Studies.
Requirements for acceptance vary by program. Most programs require applicants to posses and maintain a 2.5 GPA, although many ask for higher GPAs. Undergraduates with a cumulative GPA lower than 2.0 cannot earn credit on an affiliate program.Students on suspension or social or academic probation during the Study Abroad application process, as well as anytime leading up to departure, are not eligible to participate in a study abroad program and have coursework transferred to Wake Forest for credit. If students decide to attend a program in a country that speaks a language other than English, then they are required to by Wake Forest to take at least one class in the native language of that country.
Costs and Scholarships
Students who study abroad with Wake Forest programs will be required to pay Wake Forest tuition. Students who choose to study abroad with an affiliate program will pay the abroad program’s tuition directly and a study abroad enrollment fee to Wake Forest, calculated as 12% of Wake Forest semester tuition.
Students participating on one of Wake Forest’s study abroad programs are awarded aid in the same way as for a semester on the Reynolda Campus. Students enrolled on Affiliate programs will be considered enrolled at Wake Forest for the purpose of applying for aid.
There are many scholarships available for study abroad. Below is a list of the most popular sources of funding. Students participating in a Spring program, such as the Wake Forest program in the Southern Cone, are eligible for the Global Citizens Scholarship, awarded by the Office of the Provost as part of the University’s Quality Enhancement Plan. Scholarship awards will range from $1,000 to $5,000. Other scholarship opportunities as well as application procedures are listed on the Scholarship section of the website of the Center for International Studies.
Students participating in Wake Forest programs will receive full credit that will apply to their GPA for the courses they take abroad. Students studying abroad with an affiliate program will have credits transferred for all courses in which the student earned above a C. These courses, however, will not be counted towards the students GPA. Students may transfer a maximum of 60 hours to Wake Forest. All attempted courses and earned grades while abroad will appear on a student’s transcript, even if the courses were not approved.
For more information, contact the Center for International Studies.