Launched in 2019, WPI’s interdisciplinary program in Latin American and Caribbean Studies allows for collaboration between the university’s four schools: Arts & Sciences, The Global School, Business, and Engineering. It works to generate, consolidate, and center knowledge of the cultures of Latin America and the Caribbean by focusing on three primary areas—sustainability, mobility, and intercultural competency—that immediately connect WPI and the region through teaching and research. These areas harness WPI’s academic strengths, help to build a more global institution, and amplify its potential to make an impact in and learn from the people of Latin America and the Caribbean.
Latin American and Caribbean Studies take place in and out of the classroom at WPI. Students, faculty, and staff work together in courses, at global project centers, in student clubs, and through on-campus activities. Events bringing together the campus community to engage with topics related to the region have covered recent elections in Brazil, the presence of right-wing nationalism in Latin America, and the crises associated with migration from Latin America and the Caribbean to the United States. In project centers like those in Costa Rica and Paraguay, students work with community partners to confront issues like environmental sustainability and socio-economic development.