Bachelor of Arts added to the Green School

Written by Sudyen Navarrete\Staff Writer

Francisco Mora always wanted the University to offer a bachelor of arts in Latin American and Caribbean Studies.

“We had a Master’s but not a Bachelor’s,” he said. “This is Miami, we are really in the middle of a Latin hemisphere. It is only natural that we have this latin american and caribbean study sector.”

The Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center, under the Steven J. Green School of International and Public Affairs, has now added the bachelor of arts program to the curriculum.

Mora, director of LACC, said that it was about time to add this program to the school and that the University was one of the few that didn’t offer the program.

The bachelor program will take effect Spring 2016. It has been in process since Mora took the position of directorship two and a half years ago.

When LACC had an interim director, Mariferi Perez- Stable, Mora suggested making Latin American and Caribbean Studies into a bachelor program, rather than just a master’s.

“I asked her to put together the initial proposal for the B.A,” said Mora. “From there, we carried the process.”

Mora said he appreciates the help he received from Perez-Stable.

The major is considered to be flexible due to its relation to many different branches of international affairs.

It will be a 120-credit hour program.

According to the Kimberly Green LACC website, students who enroll in the major will take 24 credits in courses of contemporary Latin America, international political economy of Latin America and the Caribbean and culture.

It also includes the ability to choose an area of concentration, which requires six credits.

“The preparation students would need to have is the foreign language requirement,” said Keaton Lora, academic advisor for the Green School.

The foreign language requirement is also six credits.

If students choose to take the College Level Examination Program exam, it will count toward their credit in continuing with the major, but students are still required to take two language courses from the 3000 to 4000-level as part of their required courses.

“Students can start applying by now,” said Lora. “They have certain flexibility on dozens of courses to pick for their remaining 24 credits.”

Mora said students can get career opportunities in government agencies, social services, non-profit organizations and public relations and marketing, among other things.

“There’s graduate and undergraduate certificates for Latin American and Caribbean studies as well,” he said. “In addition to these studies, the Center also provides undergraduate Haitian Studies, which is the only University in the country that offers it.”

Adding a new bachelor’s to the the center is not part of the evolution the Green School is going through: its renaming after Steven J. Green and its current autonomy and separation from the College of Arts and Sciences.

Although the center was endowed by the Green family, it was not part of the process for the Center to add a new bachelor program.

After students complete their bachelor degree in the Kimberly Green LACC, they can find jobs, said Mora.

“ They will be using languages and learn what is essential and interdisciplinary,” said Mora. “Jobs concerned in area studies.. [They] are looking for people who have a genetic understanding of specific parts of the world.”

Karen Pineda, a junior international relations and political science major, supports the new addition to the center.

“With this new bachelor, I am sure our school will grow based on its reputation,” said Pineda.

“This will help students become more diverse because it teaches interdisciplinary courses. Students will become more aware of this side of the world and not only in what’s going on with the terrorists’ attacks.”

Enrollment for the new bachelor’s degree is now open.

Photo Courtesy of Creative Commons

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