Presidential Campaign Boot Camp – Washington D.C

Nick Barton, a UMASS Alum encourages you to apply for the Presidential Campaign Boot Camp!

Presidential Campaign Boot Camp will be a unique experience for students to spend a semester getting hands-on education and experience in the world of campaigns. Students will earn academic credit at The George Washington University by taking classes on the practical aspects of presidential campaigns, which we will view through the lens of the New Hampshire primary. Through a joint virtual class with students at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, NH, students will have access to campaign and political professionals both in DC and on the ground in New Hampshire.

As with all Semester in Washington Politics programs, students will be able to take advantage of GW’s location in Washington, D.C. by taking part in a professional internship. However, Boot Camp students will have the opportunity to put what they are learning in class into use not just in their internships, but also in a week-long trip to New Hampshire where they will be able to volunteer for the Presidential campaign of their choice in the lead up to the primary.

As you can imagine, the majority of Semester in Washington Politics students major in political science or similar fields, so we wanted to make sure that your department was aware of the Boot Camp program. This is a great opportunity for your students to gain hands-on experience in campaigning to help prepare them for volunteering, interning, or working on the trail in 2016. If you could share the program with your students, we would greatly appreciate it

Our priority application deadline is April 15, and the final deadline is June 1.

Apply Here!


How to sign up for a Five College Class

If you are a UMass Amherst full or part-time student who meets all of the following criteria, you are eligible to enroll in Five College classes at Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke, and Smith Colleges:

  • second semester freshman (or beyond) AND
  • in good academic standing AND
  • registered in at least one 3-credit UMass course (enroll in a UMass course at the beginning of your enrollment appointment).

To get started, log into SPIRE and select Main Menu>Enrollment>Five College Enrollment.  This will bring you to the Five College enrollment form that you’ll need to complete in order to register for a class.  Make sure you follow ALL of the instructions or you will not be allowed to enroll.  (NOTE: The enrollment form goes live in SPIRE ten days before the first enrollment date for the coming semester, so if you don’t see it now just wait till the week before enrollment starts.)

For complete details on the enrollment process, go to the Five College Interchange website or contact the UMass Five College Interchange Office.

UMass Five College Interchange Office
Coordinators: Sheila Brennan, Vanessa Blais
614 Goodell Building
Hours:  8:30 – 4:30, Monday – Friday (during semester)
(413) 545-5352

New Info Sessions for Oxford Summer Seminar 2015

Applications are now being accepted for the 2015 Oxford Summer Seminar, which runs from July 4-August 14.  Students study at Trinity College in Oxford, England and programs include courses in law, political science, history, and literature.

Come to DROP-IN information sessions on classes (literature, politics and history), and SCHOLARSHIPS:
–Tues. Feb 17, 5-6, 107 Herter Hall
–Wed. Feb. 18, 2:30-3:30, 601 Herter Hall
–Wed Feb 18, 7-8, JQA Tower, 12th Floor Lounge

Stop by the information table at UMass Campus Center Concourse: Mon-Friday, 9-12

Or apply online:

For more information, contact Anne Broadbridge, Director, Oxford Summer seminar,

Study Abroad in Guatemala!

*Please direct any questions about international programs to the IPO office (455 Hills South – UMASS).*

The Center for Latin American Studies at the University of Arizona invites you to participate in its renowned study abroad program in Guatemala, the International Program for Education and Social Action (IDEAS). We partner with the Association for the Advancement of the Social Sciences in Guatemala, one of Guatemala’s leading intellectual centers that emphasizes the connection between research and social action ( Classes are held in the El Sitio Cultural Center in Antigua, Guatemala (, a stunningly beautiful World Heritage town (, and students live with Guatemalan families in Antigua.

The IDEAS study abroad program in Guatemala is a unique experience that combines rigorous academics with for-credit internships that engage students in a transformational pedagogy. Our program weaves together theoretical and practical engagement in themes such as development and public health, ethnic relations and human rights, and indigenous politics with ongoing reflection of current events, home-stay experiences, top-notch language training and encounters with Guatemalan activists, artists, students and scholars.  You will be opening yourself to sights and sounds, thoughts and feelings of a country known equally for its spectacular beauty and deep social contrasts. Our goal is to give you a prism with which to analyze the present and build your personal and professional future in relation to a rapidly changing and increasingly challenged planet and its people.

Your experience in Guatemala will be enriched by a colloquium series with nationally and internationally recognized social and intellectual leaders. The colloquium leads to in-depth discussions on topics such as contemporary arts, the peace process in Guatemala, historical memory and human rights, grassroots development, the Central American migration crisis, and the significance of ‘democracy’ in Guatemala and the region.

Field trips, included in the price of the program and led by scholars from the region, will enable you to see for yourself how Guatemalans from different walks of life live and work amid cultural, social, environmental, and political challenges. You’ll experience first hand the realities that define life in the country today. The field trips are connected to the academic courses and will vary from session to session.

The program offers long weekends so that you can travel to Guatemala’s diverse regions, from the ancient Mayan temples of the Petén jungle, to highland indigenous markets to the black sand beaches of the Pacific coast. You can also enjoy Antigua’s vibrant cultural and intellectual life, including its renowned libraries and museums, lively cafes, and beautiful colonial architecture and cobblestone streets, under the shadow of stunning volcanoes.

To read about how transformational this program has been for previous students, see:


The single most fundamental and dramatic shift of perspective I’ve ever experienced. –Nic, Fall 2009.

WOW! There is not enough room to describe how much the Guate Study Abroad program impacted me. I experienced personal growth that has propelled me into my future that influenced my religious beliefs, political beliefs, personal aspirations, self-confidence and how I wanted to impact the world. –Courtney, AY 2012-2013.

It was the experience of a lifetime. Not only did I learn incredible amounts about Guatemala, I learned about myself.–Paige, Summer 2013.

Guatemala changed me in so many positive ways that I don’t even know where to begin. First of all, I became fluent in Spanish, which was one of my main reasons for going there. Second of all, it helped me grow so much as an individual; I was finally able to think for myself and come up with my own opinion about things. Being in Guatemala also made me realize that my true calling in life is to be a nurse. Working at Centro and Obras Sociales really gave me a higher appreciation for nurses and their role in the care of patients.–Britney, AY 2012-2013.

Choosing to study abroad for the entirety of my Sophomore year was by far the single most important and impactful decision I made during undergrad. I can say with complete sincerity that were it not for this program, I would not be who I am today, nor would I have the same passion that drives my professional career. Chelsea, Fall 2009-Spring 2010.

The Guatemala Study Abroad program was one of the most amazing experiences of my entire life. I made lifelong friendships and learned more than I could have imagined. Lawrence, Fall 2007.

For more information, contact IDEAS program director Gustavo Palma, at (inquiries can be in English or Spanish). Gustavo Palma holds a doctorate in History from the Ecole des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris. He has taught at the San Carlos University in Guatemala City, as well as other national and international universities, and he is a researcher at AVANCSO.
Interested students can also contact University of Arizona Study Abroad Program Director Jill Calderón, (see below for links to the UA study abroad application page).

All courses (except Spanish) are also available for honors or graduate credit.

SPAN 330: Intermediate Conversation (3 credits). Offered continuously.
For students who wish to improve their oral skills within a dynamic cultural context.

SPAN 425: Advanced Grammar and Composition (3 credits). Offered continuously. For advanced students who wish to perfect their speaking and writing skills.

Latin American Studies 462/Anthropology 495 Special Topics in Contemporary
Latin America: Central American Narratives of Identity and Nationhood. Offered in Summer and Fall 2015.

Taught by Professor Ricardo Lima (Ph.D, Rice University). Professor Lima is a Guatemalan anthropologist, professor and former head of the School of Humanities at the Universidad Rafael Landívar in Guatemala City. Fluent in Spanish, English and Kaqchikel-Maya, he has researched and written extensively on subaltern politics, interculturality and bilingual education. He is a former director of the University of Arizona’s Guatemala study abroad program.

This course, which has become a popular pillar in Guatemala study abroad, provides an introduction to Central America’s multicultural reality, specifically Guatemala’s cultural diversity. With a multidisciplinary approach, the course uses tools from cultural studies and postcolonial/subaltern studies to provide an introduction to Mayan cosmovision and a dynamic view of modern Mayan culture, as well as analyze the hegemonic cultural relations that shape the definition of development, citizenship and nationhood in Guatemala. Guest lecturers in this course include a Mayan Ajkib’ or Day Counter

Latin American Studies 462 Rethinking Public Health in Guatemala: State, Community and Difference in Theory and Practice (3-4 credits). Offered continuously.

Taught by Professor Juan Carlos Verdugo. Professor Verdugo is a Guatemalan medical doctor with extensive experience in public health policies. He is the founder of the Institute for Inclusive Health, an award-winning community-based integrated health project in rural Guatemala.

In Guatemala, a country with soaring rates of infant mortality and a growing gap between rich and poor and between indigenous and non-indigenous, health practitioners and activists understand critical, integral public health as a key link in the processes of building a more just society. This course takes as its starting point the premise that attention to the historical-structural limits and emerging alternatives in health care in Guatemala serves as a lens for grasping broader economic, political, social, and cultural issues of development.

Guatemala has one of the highest levels of malnutrition in all of Latin America. At the same time, historical patterns of discrimination and exclusion mean that alternative health care models, such as Mayan and community-based initiatives, are not taken into account within official public health programs. To confront these problems, a new inclusive health care model (MIS) has been developed, which breaks with the existing structural discrimination and creates an integrated and inclusive attention based on the right to primary health care, inter-cultural respect, gender equity and harmony with the environment. This model has achieved notable grassroots success.

In this course you will come to understand key tensions in Guatemala through a rethinking of national and community public health policies and practices.  Specifically this course will draw on three analytical lenses — human rights perspectives, intercultural relevance and gender equity— to deepen your understanding of how the health system is structured in Guatemala, and what integral and inclusive models of health care exist.

Latin American Studies 462 Special Topics in Contemporary Latin America: Women Writers in Guatemala. (3 credits). Offered in Spring 2016.

Taught by Professor Rubén Nájera. Professor Nájera is a Guatemalan playwright, essayist, and poet. He has received several awards including the Premio Mesoamericano de Poesía “Luis Cardoza y Aragón” in 2009. Women writers who will be invited to participate in the course include Carmen Matute, Delia Quiñónez, Carol Zardetto, and Denise Phefunchal, among others.

This course is a survey of women writers in Guatemala from the colonial period to the present day. We will explore the works of these artists in order to understand how they saw themselves, their country and their times, as well as their strategies to overcome marginalization and suppression. In this course we will try to listen to their literary voices and we will meet and discuss with contemporary women writers. We will also study the emerging role of Mayan women writers.

We will also be developing a course on the Anthropology of Central American migration.

Latin American Studies 493: Internship (1-6 credits). Offered continuously.
Study Abroad students are placed with Guatemalan social organizations in and around the Antigua area according to their interests (advanced students may be placed elsewhere, see below). Students have helped disabled children, done medical internships, and tutored in an organization that aids children whose families live by sorting garbage in Guatemala City. The internship program is not just “volunteer tourism,” however. You will gain practical experience collaborating with Guatemalan social organizations, but you will also learn critical thinking skills to link your internship with your academic work, reflect on the broader issues of global development politics, and build on this critical experience in your future professional plans. Below is a partial list of internships.

Los Patojos:  after school program with at risk children in Antigua, Los Patojos was recently featured on CNN:

Obras Sociales Hermano Pedro: hospital for children and adults with special needs and/or physical challenges,

Casa Jackson: project for malnourished infants,

As Green as it Gets: supporting a small producers’ sustainable development coffee cooperative: environmental, agricultural and business support,

Camino Seguro (in Guatemala City): Program for at risk children whose parents work in or in conjunction with the Guatemala City Garbage Dump. Tutoring children, adult literacy, microenterprise,

Latin American Studies 499: Towards a Praxis of the Possible: Thought and Action in Study Abroad in Central America (1 credit). Offered continuously.

Taught by Professor Jennifer Casolo. Professor Casolo is a geographer whose research focuses on the limits and possibilities of grassroots movements for social change.  She first became involved in peasant politics and human rights in El Salvador in the 1980s and women’s rights in Honduras in the 1990s. She is a former director of the University of Arizona Guatemala’s study abroad program.

This 1-credit special class is required for all Guatemala study abroad students. The class will provide you with the tools to weave together the various facets of your study abroad experience in a critical way that benefits your final project and helps you to grasp the relationship between theory and practice, as well as interrogate the power-laden dynamics underlying taken-for-granted ideas. Throughout the semester we will use films, role-play, break-out sessions, peer review, debate, analysis of current events, and art. Students are divided into two sub-groups: those with an internship focus and those with an academic focus, with different assignments for the first half of each class and then a discussion on a specific KEYWORD for the second half of the class.  Keywords may include Development, Solidarity, Coloniality, Difference, Sustainability, Knowledge, Praxis.

Latin American Studies 495F: Colloquium in Latin American Studies (1 credit). Offered continuously.

Through a weekly lecture series, students are exposed to nationally and internationally recognized experts in such areas as ethnic relations, contemporary art, historical memory and human rights in Guatemala, the Central American migration crisis, and the significance of democracy in Guatemala and the region. Required of all Guatemala study abroad students.

Latin American Studies 499: Independent Study (1-3 credits). Available upon arrangement. Students work with a designated professor to complete a research project or undertake an in-depth study of an area of interest. Past projects have included: memory and photography in Guatemala, the peace process, and US policy in Central America, among others.

Plans of study: Students can take a maximum of 9 credits during the summer program or 12-15 credits during the semester. Classes are organized so as to leave Fridays free for travel and Wednesdays free to focus on an internship.

This program offers two tracks: 1) an “academic” track, whereby students take academic classes and can also do an internship (1 credit during the summer and 3 credits during the semester) and 2) an “internship” track, whereby students take the bulk of their credits as a supervised internship. All students must enroll in the 1-credit weekly colloquium and in LAS 499, the 1-credit “synthesis” class. Spanish classes are available to students in both tracks.

Pre-requisites: Two semesters of college Spanish or the equivalent. GPA: minimum 3.0.

Dates: Summer 2015: June 14-August 7, 2015. Fall 2015: August 30-November 28, 2015. Spring 2016:January 16-April 23, 2016.

Deadline to apply for Summer session: Feb. 15. Deadline to apply for Fall session: April 15. Deadline to apply for spring session: Oct. 15.

Cost: Semester program: $9,975. Summer program: $5,700. Fee includes tuition and academic fees (students receive a University of Arizona transcript), food and lodging (except for meals on Sundays), fieldtrips, health insurance, orientation, and airport pickup. Does not include airfare to Guatemala City or required course books and reading materials.

Contact: In Guatemala: Gustavo Palma ( UA Study Abroad: Jill Calderón (

To apply:

Ugrad Research Engagement Program – New Openings Posted

Do you want to learn more about research? Develop a better relationship with a faculty member (think letters of reference!)? Or learn a new skill? Consider applying for our Undergraduate Research Engagement Program (UREP). UREP is a way for you to earn credits and practical experience all at once.

Students selected as UREP fellows work one-on-one with faculty and advanced graduate students on various research projects. Past fellows have gone on to present their research at national conferences, get published, and more.

Check out the listings today. (And look again if you’ve checked before. We recently added several new openings!)

New Gen Ed: Transnational Approaches to Queer and Sexuality Studies

Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies is announcing a new gen ed course:

Transnational Approaches to Queer and Sexuality Studies 4 credits, SB G #18383
Monday, Wednesday 11:15-12:05 p.m.
Discussion sections Friday 10:10 and 11:15
Professor Svati Shah

This interdisciplinary course will help students to understand what the term “sexuality studies” means, by providing a foundation in the key concepts, historical and social contexts, topics, and politics that inform the fields of sexuality studies, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender studies, and queer studies. Course instruction will be carried out through readings, lectures, films, and discussions, as well as individual and group assignments. Over the course of the semester, students will develop and use critical thinking skills to discern how “sexuality” becomes consolidated as a distinct category of analysis in the late nineteenth century, and what it means to speak about sexuality and transgender politics and categories today. Topics include queer theories and politics, trans theories and politics, LGBTQ social movements within and outside of the U.S., relationships with feminist reproductive justice movements, heterosexuality, homophobia, and HIV/AIDS and health discourses. The range of materials covered will prioritize developing analyses that examine the interplay between sexuality and class, gender, race, ethnicity, and neoliberalism.
Check out the Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies website for more great courses: /courseinfo.htm

New Online Int’l Relations and Business Classes

We are pleased to offer three new Political Science courses online —  two of which can also count towards the Five College International Relations Certificate! 

Click here for a full list of our Political Science & Legal Studies Online Courses for winter 2015 and spring 2015!

  (This course can count toward the Five College International Relations Certificate – Requirement 2)

In general, the course is structured in three consecutive parts, each one building on the other. The first part of the course situates the debate on private sector power in global governance by outlining the different perspectives on the policy-making environment in which private sector actors operate. The course then reviews different theoretical approaches to analyzing how private sector influence over global public policy-making operates, and what challenges we face in understanding these dynamics. The remainder of the course reviews scholarship on lobbying dynamics in a wide variety of different areas in global governance, such as international trade, pharmaceuticals and health care, financial regulation, intellectual property rights  and global environmental politics.

(This course can count towards the Five College International Relations Certificate)

Ambassador Armen Baibourtian is a visiting professor coming to UMass from the realm of the United Nations diplomacy and international development. He was the Senior Adviser to the United Nations Resident Coordinator and the UNDP Resident Representative in Armenia from 2008 to 2013. He twice served as the Armenian Deputy Foreign Minister  between 1997 and 2000 and from 2004 until 2008 with portfolios in International Organizations, America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Africa and Legal Issues.


An exploration of the intersection of business and government. The instructor, David E. Floreen, is Senior Vice Presidentof Government Affairs and  Trust Services for the Massachusetts Bankers Association  where he is responsible for coordinating state government affairs. He is actively  involved in expanding financial literacy awareness in schools and colleges, and directs Mass Bankers PAC.

Former U.S Representative Torkildsen Teaching Class on Political Leadership

Did you know that Peter Torkildsen ’80 once served as the representative of Massachusetts’ sixth district, and is the last Republican to represent Massachusetts in the U.S House of Representatives?

Lucky for us, he is teaching PolSci 292P (Class number: 19064) on Political Leadership! And what’s more, there are still seats open! So get on Spire and register! The class meets once a week from 1:00-3:30 P.M on Tuesdays.



Inspiring classes …

One of the most prestigious universities in the world…

Flexibility to travel in England, Ireland, France and beyond…

8 liberal arts credits (4 of them honors)…


This is what it means to study abroad in Oxford!

The UMass Oxford Summer Seminar will hold DROP-IN information sessions about the 2015 summer program to talk about classes (literature, politics and history), and SCHOLARSHIPS.


Wednesday (with a Tuesday schedule), November 12, 2:30-3:30 pm

Thursday, November 13, 2:30-3:30

Tuesday November 18, 2:30-3:30 pm

Thursday, November 20, 2:30-3:30


Also come visit our table at the International Opportunities Expo

Student Union Ballroom

Wednesday November 19, 2-5


(You do NOT have to attend a session to apply; the application portal is open at:

Hope to see you soon,

Anne Broadbridge, Director, Oxford Summer seminar,