A minor that can make a major difference

Given multiple factors like the increasing Latino/Hispanic population in the United States, the global nature of the economy as a whole, and the emerging markets of Latin America, it's hard to think of many career fields for outgoing college grads that wouldn't benefit from employees with the skills and cultural competencies gained through a minor in Latin American Studies.

Think about it — from business, to finance, health care administration, nursing, social work, and education (to name a few) — an understanding of the language, culture, history and geography of Latin America is a valuable asset in nearly any field. 

Our LAS minors gain the same language proficiency as our majors, and are likewise required to spend a minimum six week immersion in a Latin American country through either an approved academic study abroad program, the National Student Exchange program, an internship or service/volunteer work, ensuring a level of comfort and cultural competency living and working in and among these populations, in the U.S or abroad.

Students look out over Guatemala hills and mountains
LAS minor Morgan Gerke at Machu Pich in Peru, where she completed an internship.

For alumna, adding LAS as minor a no-brainer

Now working through AmeriCorps VISTA, Morgan Gerke credits her LAS minor as being crucial to starting her career. She speaks of the importance of the program, her career and the struggles her students face, and the significance of an internship in Peru.

A huge bonus to any degree

Latin American Studies Minor

24 credits

The requirements for the LAS minor include 15 core credits in Spanish, history, and culture. Students then have 20 electives to choose from for a total of 9 credits.

See advising guide and the online course catalog for further details.

Language immersion requirement

Because of its invaluable benefits to students in terms of developing fluency in the target language and learning about Latin America, all LAS majors and the minor have a language immersion requirement of six weeks in a Latin American country, although a full semester is recommended if possible, especially for those doing the comprehensive teaching major. The requirement can be met through enrollment in an approved academic study abroad program, the National Student Exchange program, an internship or service/volunteer work. Students facing extenuating circumstances may participate in an alternative domestic language immersion experience pre-approved and determined in conjunction with the LAS Committee.

How do I declare a Latin American Studies major, minor or certificate?

If you're interested in any of the above, or in changing from your current major, see your academic advisor or contact the LAS program director at LAS@uwec.edu.

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