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Latin American & Caribbean Studies

Latin American & Caribbean Studies

Union College's thriving Latin American and Caribbean Studies (LACS) program offers a major, an interdepartmental major, and a minor in the study of Latin America and Caribbean regions.

The LACS program represents today a multidisciplinary approach to the history, politics, cultures, and societies of Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Latino communities that are part of the United States. The program offers more than 60 courses, which are part of the common curriculum, fulfilling requirements in the humanities, linguistic and cultural competency, and connections across disciplines.

LACS students can focus on one or several of a number of related themes: 

  • Art and politics in Latin America and the Caribbean
  • International affairs and global studies
  • Latino/Latina studies
  • Politics and power in Latin America and the Caribbean


Our 18 faculty members have diverse international and national backgrounds, and come from a variety of departments, including political science, history, modern languages, anthropology, visual arts and others. They have traveled and researched extensively in Latin America, resulting in a broad list of publications.

Special learning opportunities

In addition to enjoying small classes with professors who care about your success, you can round out your academic experience with study abroad in Argentina, either on a full term in Cordoba, Argentina (with Union faculty and students) and in São Paulo, Brazil (in conjunction with Hobart and William Smith Colleges), or on mini-terms based in Cuba and in Buenos Aires and Patagonia, Argentina (on alternate years). On each of these terms, a Union faculty member will accompany you. 

"I study LACS because it provides me with cultural skills that serve as a foundation to examine essential questions about human rights, responsibilities, social justice and empowerment of Latino and Caribbean communities."
- Manny Ventura

LACS majors get involved in a number of campus groups, including Círculo Estudiantil Latinoamericano (CELA), African and Latino Alliance of Students (ALAS), Spanish Club and the Spanish Language Table. The College regularly presents lectures, films, exhibits, and visits by Latin American writers, artists, and scholars.

Of special note for those with an interest in LACS is Union's 5-year cooperative degree program with Georgetown University. This agreement enables qualified undergraduate students majoring in Latin American Studies to receive a master’s degree from Georgetown’s Latin American and Caribbean Studies program in one academic year and a summer, rather than in the normal three or four semesters.


Graduates who are fluent in the history, politics, languages and cultures of Latin American countries pursue promising careers in business, finance, government, journalism, law, psychology, public policy and much more.

Meet some of our faculty

Lorraine Cox

Lorraine Cox

Associate Professor of Contemporary Art Theory
Ph.D., Duke University
Special interests: Art of Europe and the Americas

Guillermina Seri

Guillermina Seri

Associate Professor of Political Science
Ph.D., University of Florida
Special interests: Democracy, politics and the police, human rights in Latin America

Teresa Meade

Teresa Meade

Florence B. Sherwood Professor of History and Culture
Ph.D., Rutgers University
Special interests: Latin American history, gender, labor history in the 19th and 20th centuries

William García

William García

Professor of Spanish
Ph.D., Rutgers University
Special interests:  Latin American theater and cinema, Caribbean and U.S. Latino literatures, gender studies

After Union

Teacher, Cambridge Friends School

Managing director, BNY Mellon Corporate Trust Division, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Regional assistant, Latin America & Caribbean, USAID

Senior Associate, KPMG LLP

Chief immigration advisor to U.S. Representative (Oakland, Calif.)

Independent consultant, Impactivo Consulting, Puerto Rico