Dear Alumni,

UF Latin American Studies alumni are an integral part of the academic and professional community of Latin America, Caribbean, and Latino Studies experts around the globe. Since 1929, when the first UF master’s thesis was completed on a Latin American topic, over 1700 graduate students have completed theses or doctoral dissertations on Latin America, the Caribbean, or Latinos/Hispanics in the United States. The Masters of Arts in Latin American Studies degree (MALAS) has been offered continuously by the Center since 1952, and there are now over 400 MALAS alumni. In addition, hundreds of students have completed the undergraduate Minor or certificate in Latin American Studies or the graduate certificates in Latin American Studies or Tropical Conservation and Development.

We are very proud that the Center for Latin American Studies has assisted so many of you in achieving your educational and professional goals. But now we need your help in assuring that today’s UF students continue to receive a first-class education and have access to the many opportunities which you enjoyed.

A central goal of the Center for Latin American Studies is to facilitate the building of an even stronger network of UF Latin American Studies alumni. With this in mind, the Center convoked the first meeting of the LAS Alumni Board in October 2005. The goal of the Alumni Board is to enhance the quality of the Center’s academic programs, to build the prestige of the Center both nationally and internationally, and to assist the Center in acquiring sufficient resources to achieve these ends.

If you have not already done so, please take a minute to complete the Alumni Update Form. There you can provide us with updated contact and employment information, indicate your interest in joining the Alumni Board and tell us whether you would like to receive the Center’s free semi-annual newsletter, The Latinamericanist, in hard copy or via email.

We are particularly eager to learn about your current employment and other accomplishments. With your permission, this information will be included in the “Alumni News and Notes” section of the newsletter and posted on the Alumni News section of this web page. This information is very helpful to our students as they explore career options.

Finally, the Center depends on external resources to support most of its special activities. Please take a moment to browse through the section, Contributing to the Center, to see the myriad of ways in which you can assist in maintaining the UF Center for Latin American Studies as one of the premier centers in the nation and internationally.

With best wishes,

Philip J. Williams
Director and Professor
Center for Latin American Studies