CLACS Virtual Open House (January 23)


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Learn about the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies at New York University.

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CLACS Virtual Open House (January 23)

  1. 1. Welcome to the CLACS Virtual Open House
  2. 2. MA Program Graduate study at CLACS is a unique experience: students thrive from unparalleled access to world-renowned scholars while pursuing completely customized degrees in a city like no other. For more information:
  3. 3. Joint Degree Options Journalism Library Science Museum Studies For more information: Law
  4. 4. Jill Lane Director Ada Ferrer History Aisha Khan Anthropology Sinclair Thomson History Sibylle Fischer Spanish and Portuguese Pamela Calla Anthropology Tom Abercrombie Anthropology Katherine Smith World Arts and Cultures
  5. 5. Jorge Castañeda Politics Odi Gonzales Quechua Language Patricio Navia Politics Dylon Robbins Spanish and Portuguese Peter Lucas International Education Edgardo Perez Morales History 135 Affiliated Faculty Across Disciplines at NYU For more information:
  6. 6. CLACS Course Offerings Not only are CLACS course offerings interdisciplinary, but professors examine topics from a variety of viewpoints in each course throughout the semester. Something visual, look for a classroom shot We have great interdisciplinary classes, and the classes themselves are interdisciplinary
  7. 7. CLACS Colloquium
  8. 8. Courses Across NYU
  9. 9. Anthropology History Education Media Studies Social and Cultural Analysis Politics Linguistics Economics Spanish and Portuguese
  10. 10. Courses at Columbia University
  11. 11. Quechua at NYU Andean Initiative For more information:
  12. 12. Caribbean Initiative
  13. 13. Research Development of MA Project from beginning of program Latin American and Caribbean Subject Librarian at Bobst Summer field research
  14. 14. CLACS Grant Recipients 2012-2013 •Privatization and Public Education in Colombia (Bogota) •Bolivian Migrant Culture in Buenos Aires, Argentina •Politics of Candomblé Healing Practices (Salvador, Brazil) •Cuban Performance as Sociopolitical Resistance (Havana, Cuba) •Mining Labor Struggles in Cajamarca, Peru •Legal Frameworks for Transgender Politics in Ecuador (Guayaquil)
  15. 15. Sample projects “Economic Development and Refugee Protection: The Case of Colombian Migrants in Panama” “Public Dialogue and GTMO: A Struggle for New Historical Discourse and Civic Responsibility” “Violence in the Caribbean: Motivations and Justifications for the Radicalization of the Puerto Rican Independence Movement in Five Isolated Events” “The Reformation of Ecuadorian Migrant Identity in Spain” “Women Rule?: The Role of Women in Oaxaca, Mexico’s UsosyCostumbres Governments”
  16. 16. Funding for Field Research Tinker Field Research Grants for Summer Travel Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowships (FLAS)
  17. 17. Title VI National Resource Center
  18. 18. Resources Across NYU Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics Center for Media, Culture and History Metropolitan Center for Urban Education Center for Religion and Media Academic Departments and Programs across the university Institute for Public Knowledge Humanities Initiatives Institute of Fine Art
  19. 19. Early in 2013, CLACS entered into a partnership with the North American Congress on Latin America (NACLA), a nonprofit organization that publishes a quarterly journal providing information and analysis on Latin America. Publishing opportunities Internships Collaboration with NACLA events For more information see
  20. 20. Internships Special Internship Opportunities for CLACS Students Colorlines NACLA Center for Legal and Social Studies Americas Society and Council of the Americas El Museo del Barrio InSight Crime Museum of the American Indian William J. Clinton Foundation Qualitas of Life Ballet Hispanico Pachamama Peruvian Arts For more information see:
  21. 21. New York City as a Resource
  22. 22. Alumni Placement UNICEF Americas Society Human Rights Watch United Nations Washington Office on Latin America Huffington Post Central American Relief Efforts International Crisis Group Institute of International Education International Coalition of Sites and Conscience United Nations Global Compact El Museo del Barrio Rhodes College Rutgers University Graduates have pursued degrees at Yale, Duke, UCLA, and NYU
  23. 23. CLACS Student Initiatives Student clubs and groups –GALAS: Graduate Association of Latin American Studies –Quechua outreach committee/Rimasun Sample student projects – Latin American News Dispatch – Stories of El Salvador: The Civil War and its Aftermath (exhibition) Public presentation of research –Graduate Student-initiated Conference Grant
  24. 24. Admissions Deadlines To be considered for financial aid, applications for the CLACS MA program are due by: February 1, 2014 Applications without financial aid consideration are due by: April 15, 2014 Double check department deadlines for joint degree programs. For more information see:
  25. 25. Application Checklist • Academic Transcripts • Statement of Purpose • Résumé or curriculum vitae • Writing sample • Letters of Recommendation • Official test score reports from GRE and TOEFL (if applicable) • $95 application fee For more information see: *Double check departmental guidelines for joint degree programs
  26. 26. Application Checklist: Academic Transcripts • Scan your transcripts and upload them into your online application • Do not send paper copies • Include English translations, if applicable • Admitted applicants only: Final and official copies of academic transcripts, with English translations if applicable For more information see: *Double check departmental guidelines for joint degree programs
  27. 27. Application Checklist: Official test score reports from GRE and TOEFL (if applicable) •All applicants must take the general test of the GRE •Take the GRE no later than 4-6 weeks before the application deadline •Applicants who are not native English speakers much submit official TOEFL scores •TOEFL is waived if your baccalaureate or master’s degree was completed at an institution where the language instruction is English •Take the TOEFL no later than 6-8 weeks before the application deadline For more information see: For the GRE: For the TOEFL:
  28. 28. Application Checklist: Résumé or curriculum vitae Targeted document Emphasize accomplishments What to include: Name, Address, Phone Number, Email Objective (optional) Education Experience Activities (optional) Skills (optional) Interests (optional) For more information see:
  29. 29. Application Checklist: Statement of Purpose The statement of purpose is one of the most important parts of your application. It shows not only your strengths and goals as a scholar, but your writing style, your research interests, your skills and what makes you unique. • Describe past and present work as it relates to your intended field of study, educational objectives, career plans, and reasons for choosing your field • Should be concisely written and not exceed two double-spaced pages For more information see:
  30. 30. Application Checklist: Writing Sample • Limited to 15 double-spaced pages, perhaps excerpting a longer work • Should be a term paper, essay, or publication that demonstrates your capacity to conduct research and/or social, political, or cultural analysis. It need not have been published. *For Latin American and Caribbean Studies/Journalism: In addition to the writing sample described above for all applicants, three additional writing samples are required for Journalism. The writing samples need not have been published, although if you have clips you are proud of, please do submit them. The samples should represent your best overall work and your aptitude for journalism. Clips from your college newspaper, personal essays, academic research papers, and short fiction are all acceptable. For more information see:
  31. 31. Application Checklist: Letters of Recommendation • Required to be submitted as part of the online application; do not send by mail • See GSAS Frequently Asked Questions: For more information see:
  32. 32. Financial Aid Scholarships and Financial aid are available for Masters' Students. Students must apply by the February 1 deadline to be considered. Financial Aid available through the Graduate School: GSAS Fellowships (highly competitive, full tuition and stipend) •McCracken Fellowship •Graduate School Fellowships •GSAS Opportunity Fellowship, for eligible applicants (CLACS applies on behalf of the applicant) Tuition Point Grants, limited awards that offset the cost of tuition from 4–16 points. Annual FLAS (Tuition, stipend) Department of Education funded Foreign Language and Area Studies fellowships, to support the study of Quechua or Brazilian Portuguese. Students must demonstrate that language is fundamental to the student's course of study, and to future professional or academic ambitions. For more information see: For more on FLAS information see:
  33. 33. Q&A Question: What does the dual-degree schedule look like for library science? How many classes would constitute full time in both programs? Amalia Cordova: This unique program is designed to meet the widespread need for subject specialists and scholar librarians in academic, research, and cultural institutions. Our approach is to integrate Latin American expertise with education and training in library and information science. CLACS will require you take one required course per semester, which are mandatory, and I would need to check current schedules in Library Science this year to give you an accurate schedule. Question: Can international students apply for Summer FLAS Fellowships? AmaliaCordova: Unfortunately, only U.S. citizens are eligible for FLAS funding. Question: How large are classes in the M.A. program? CLACS Student: Classes are generally small. A typical CLACS cohort will be about 15 students, and you'll be enrolled your first year in the introduction series: one course in the Fall; the other in the Spring semester. But generally the average graduate level class will be 15-20 people—very intimate. Question: I'm torn between Quechua and Portuguese. Do you have a recommendation for which is more likely to receive a FLAS Fellowship? Could I double my chances by applying for both Portuguese and Quechua? Amalia Cordova: The FLAS is generally awarded by its relation to the topic or area of study, so if you already have this in mind it certainly helps your application. Which are you likely to put to use in your research or professional projects? FYI, recent Annual FLAS awardees at CLACS students have tended to be focused on Quechua, but we have also awarded Summer FLAS grants towards Portuguese intensive language programs in Brazil.
  34. 34. Q&A Question: Can you comment more on the joint Global Journalism program? Jill Lane: The Global Journalism program combines the MA in journalism with that in Latin American Studies. The program is 4 semesters and students complete two separate final projects. There are additional writing requirements for the journalism program, so you'll want to look at those requirements carefully and let us know if you have any questions. Question: Can you talk a bit more about the Dual Degree programs? Do joint MA students have the same access to CLACS resources as those who are pursuing a single MA degree within CLACS? Jill Lane: Yes, absolutely, CLACS resources are available to all students, regardless of the program in which they are enrolled. Joint degree students have the same advising, access to grants, etc. Question: Is it important to have a specific social science research background? CLACS student: The CLACS program is actually very interdisciplinary. Although a background in social science research would definitely be a plus, it is surely not necessary. Some of my colleagues in the program actually come from diverse backgrounds, such as in Psychology and even the Fine Arts. Question: Do you all feel that the probability of finding a position after finishing the program is feasible? And at the same time, do you feel the program has prepared students for these positions? Jill Lane: Our students have been quite successful in finding work in the field after graduation. We run a "perspectives from the field" lecture series with Alumni, which offers concrete networking opportunities with people who now work at the UN, Unicef, and a range of NGOs or other organizations. Our internship program definitely offers opportunities to build work experience in these fields.
  35. 35. Q&A Question: What resources are available for jobs and internships? Graduate Enrollment Services: We have an excellent office of career services, called Wassrerman You will start your relationship with Wasserman during your first semester, and they offer many resources for finding jobs and internships. Question: Do you have a strong Brazilian studies/ Portuguese language program? CLACS Student: This semester I'll be taking Portuguese for Spanish Speakers, a class offered in the Spanish Department. My plan is to conduct research during the summer in Brazil. My advisor will be Professor Dylon Robbins, his main area of research is Brazil. There are also classes that can be taken at Columbia. Question: How many people typically enter the library science program? Amalia: We have only had one student take this joint degree program at CLACS in recent years, but we have a wonderful Specialist Librarian on staff, you could contact her for more information as she would be the person you would work with: She has put together a page on Latin American resources at NYU. In addition, NYU students have access to Columbia University Libraries, as well at affiliated institutions in our graduate consortium. Question: Do you know when admissions notifications will be? Jill Lane: We expect to notify applicants by the end of February or first week of March.
  36. 36. Q&A Question: What percentage of students admitted receive financial aid? Graduate Enrollment Services: This answer depends on the particular year, with an average of six awards any given year. The Graduate School of Arts and Science also offers financial support to master’s students through the Tuition Incentive Program (TIP), direct funding to master’s programs, employee tuition remission and the Dean’s Travel Grants. Information about these programs and additional sources of financial support are available through the GSAS financial aid information page. If you have not already done so, you may want to investigate external funding opportunities. You may start with NYU's Office of Financial Aid web site (there you will find links to scholarship searches and information for international students). You may also want to search for outside sources for funding online. Question: You mentioned the competitive GSAS Fellowships in the presentation. Are applicants automatically considered for those, or does a separate application need to be completed? Graduate Enrollment Services: If you apply by the February 1 priority admissions deadline, then you will be considered for departmental sources of funding. You must apply for FLAS funding by February 1. If you are interested in federal loans or work study opportunities, then you must complete the FAFSA. For additional information about ways you can finance your graduate education at the Graduate School, please review the PDF document called, “Financing Graduate Education”. The PDF document can be found at
  37. 37. Q&A Question: How easily will I be able to integrate Quechua study into my M.A. degree? I intend to study foreign relations and politics of Latin America. Amalia Cordova: A FLAS grant will require you take one additional semester of classes, since Quechua classes, though required every semester, do not count toward your 32 points to degree. Regarding Portuguese, we do offer Portuguese classes that are zero credit. Question: I would like to do research abroad. Is the application for research grants very competitive? How many students are generally admitted? Jill Lane: Most of our MA students receive some form of funding to support research abroad. The FLAS summer grants - for language study - are very competitive. The research fellowships require a strong, well-written application, but we support and guide our students in the preparation of those applications.
  38. 38. Q&A Question: Is it possible to submit journalistic texts as a writing sample? Jill Lane: Yes, you can submit journalistic writing as your writing sample. You will submit multiple samples to Journalism; you may send one of the same to CLACS, but choose the one that you think best illustrates your analytical thinking. We look forward to reading it! Question: Are any of those fellowships available for international students? Graduate Enrollment Services: FLAS is only available to US citizens. International students are eligible for every other form of funding available through CLACS. Question: I'd like to know a little more about writing sample requirements. Sinclair Thomson: The Admissions Committee will be made up of faculty from different disciplines so you should submit the work that you've done that you feel best represents your strengths and interests, given your own training and background. The length is 15 pages maximum. It can be a straight academic analysis with a formal expository structure, or a more creative piece. If the former, a piece would be strong if it makes an original argument and demonstrates it based on grounded empirical source material. Question: I am unable to obtain an unofficial transcript with a registrar's signature, watermark or on official registrar stationary as my undergrad school simply prints it from my account; can I just upload the unofficial transcript copy they gave me? Graduate Enrollment Services: We do require a copy of your official transcript as part of your application. If your school will not send you the transcript, then they can mail it to us directly. We do prefer everything to be scanned and uploaded.
  39. 39. Q&A Question: How does the FLAS funding work? Would that be something you apply for after notification of admission or something you apply for alongside your application? Jill Lane: You will apply to FLAS at the same time as you submit your application. You would be notified about the FLAS fellowship at the time of admission. Does that answer your question? Question: In terms of the writing sample, would an excerpt with an abstract be acceptable, or would you recommend a complete piece? EdgardoPérez Morales: Somehting about 15 pages long, double spaced, is a good size. So, even if it is an excerpt of longer work, its okay as long as it is about that size. Question: About what percentage of CLACS students receive funding? This depends on the size of the incoming class, which varies by year. In the past cohort—a little smaller than usual—everyone received some form of funding, from full funding to tuition points. There are 5 FLAS students every year, split between first and second year students. Question: Another question for international students, is it possible to work as a Teacher Assistant for financial aid? Graduate Enrollment Services: We do not offer teaching assistantships. There are some adjunct instructor positions, but these are typically reserved for doctoral students. You will be considered for all types of aid available through CLACS as long as you complete your application on time.
  40. 40. Q&A Question: I studied abroad as part of a Duke program, and the credit is listed in my official transcript. Do I also need to submit an official transcript from Duke? Graduate Enrollment Services: You do not need to submit the Duke transcripts as long as they are listed on your official undergraduate transcript. Question: What are the possibilities to find resources to do anthropology at home in case that part of my research proposal suppose do it? EdgardoPérez Morales: Students have done ethnographic and field research in several places, including the US. Students have been very successful in getting funding for research, and usually come back with excellent materials and new perspectives. Question: Is the FLAS a standard amount, or does it range in award size? Jill Lane: Yes, the FLAS is a standard amount, determined by the Department of Education. It covers tuition and offers a stipend comparable to the Graduate School fellowships. Question: Generally how many students apply for CLACS masters programs and how many are accepted? Kyle Barron: It varies by year. But generally about 60% are accepted, although it can be more or less depending on the application pool.
  41. 41. Q&A Question: Aside from the FLAS awards, are the available grants/fellowship opportunities exclusive to the CLACS program or are they competitive within all graduate programs at NYU (GSAS)? Jill Lane: Yes, two of those grants are exclusive to CLACS. They are still competitive, of course, but yes, are reserved for CLACS students. Question: Does the writing sample need to be in English? Could it potentially be in a relevant language such as Spanish? Sinclair Thomson: You can submit a Spanish-language text if you think that would better represent your abilities. However, you should submit an English-language text of some sort. Some students have translated an original Spanish-language piece into English for submission. Question: Is it be possible to arrange to sit in on a class ? Second Year Student: Yes, it's possible. To do so, you can contact the professor directly to sit in if there is a specific course that you find interesting. I sat in on Dr. Calla's Comparative Racisms course while I was looking at MA programs. It was great to see and meet the faculty and students. Or you can contact the Assistant Director, Amalia, who can put you in contact with a CLACS faculty member. Question: How far in advance of applying does the GRE need to be taken? Graduate Enrollment Services: Please see our FAQ for the answer to your question.
  42. 42. Q&A Question: As a student at Clacs, is there a possibility to take most of the classes at the Linguistics department? Jill Lane: Yes! Students can take graduate courses from any department in the graduate school of arts and science, assuming that they are relevant to your course of study and that the professor and/or department grants permissions. Some courses do have pre-requisites or may be limited to doctoral students. However, in general CLACS students have been able to enroll in a wide range of courses in many departments. Question: I'm interested in the JD/MA dual degree program. So, I guess building on Camilla's question, how much do the different schools work together? As in how different is doing a dual degree than just doing the two programs separately or in parallel? Amalia Cordova: The dual degree option varies according to the programs. With museum studies and journalism, it only extends the MA by a semester, but with Law its much longer to complete the reuirements for the degree there. The idea is to build your own interdisciplinary experience instead of doing two isolated programs. Question: Is there anyone who can speak to Brazilian studies within CLACS? What resources does CLACS have specifically in relation to Brazil? Amalia Cordova: While NYU doesn't have a distict Brazil Center, we have a student group, and a diverse body of faculty throughout NYU working on and sometime in Brazil. At CLACS and Spanish & Portuguese we have Dylon Robbins, who works on Brazil, he taught the Afro-Latin Soundscapes this fall, and adjunct Peter Lucas who works with participatory media in Rio de janeiro teaches Human Rights in Latin america at CLACS every Spring. Other distinguished faculty concentrating on brazil include Barbara Browning at performance Studies, bob Stam at Cinema Studies, and Barbara Weinstein at History.
  43. 43. Q&A Question: Is it possible to continue academics in NYU/Columbia/CUNY (for example, in a PhD Program) after the MA Program? What are the scores? It's possible to apply a PhD Program in the same University? or do I have to change? EdgardoPérez Morales: There's no automatic promotion or direct link between our MA program and any PhD programs. Our MA, of course, will prepare you to go on to continue a career in academia, an many students do apply and are admitted to doctoral programs after they finish their MAs. So while the MA is a great asset to have for when you apply to a PhD, the application process itself is independent and you have to individually contact the Phd institution and apply. Of course, faculty and other colleagues are always happy to help and advise you in your application process. Question: Should the statement of purpose and letters of recommendation for the FLAS be distinct from the statement of purpose and rec letters for the general app? Jill Lane: You can use the same recommenders for both applications, assuming that they can speak both to your potential for graduate study and your interest/talent in language study. I would venture that most recommendations will do both things simultaneously, but if you feel that a different recommender would serve you better in one or the other, you may want to adjust accordingly. Your statement does not need to be substantially different; in the FLAS application be sure to emphasize how language study figures into your academic interests.
  44. 44. Thank you for participating in the CLACS Virtual Open House To explore our interdisciplinary MA program visit: For more information about the application process: Refer to the NYU Graduate School of Arts and Sciences website for application tips: To learn more about the student body and meet current students, please visit this website for student profiles: CLACS Frequently asked questions: Visit our blog: Check us out on Facebook and Twitter