Frequently Asked QuestionsFor Prospective Students
For Current Students
For Prospective Students1. What kind of background do I need to pursue the M.A. in Latin American and Caribbean Studies?
Our students come from diverse backgrounds in humanities, social and natural sciences, and from a range of professional fields. Most of our students find that the interdisciplinary approach of our program is a good fit for the variety of their scholarly and career interests. Many of our students have either studied, lived and worked in Latin America, and bring these experiences and perspective to the academic program at CLACS.
2. Is the program open to part-time students?
Yes. Many of CLACS students work while getting their Master’s degree. Most classes are held in the evenings, so as not to conflict with the working schedule. The degree must be completed within the five years of matriculation, and students must take Intro I in their first semester, and Intro II in their second.
3. How large are classes in the M.A. program?
Class size varies, from 10 students for smaller seminars to approximately 30 students for larger classes such as the Intro to Latin American and Caribbean Studies. Class size typically does not exceed 20 students.
4. What is the language proficiency requirement?
For successfully completing the Master’s degree, language competency must be proven in either Spanish, French, Portuguese or Quechua through either option "1-coursework" (completing, or having completed, not more than two years before matriculation, a full or final intermediate-level college course in the language with a grade of B or better) or "3-examination" (given by Graduate School of Arts and Science).
5. What languages are available to study at New York University that would satisfy the language requirement of the M.A.?
All of the mentioned languages – Spanish, French, Portuguese and Quechua – can be studied at NYU. Students interested in the Andean region are especially encouraged to take Quechua classes with Prof. Odi Gonzales. Visit Quechua Language at NYU to learn more, or go to our blog to read about the students’ experiences.
6. Can I take classes in other departments?
Yes. Before the beginning of each semester, CLACS compiles a list of courses taught in departments across the University that are of interest to our students. Students should contact the sponsoring department and may have to contact the professor directly before registration. If there is a course that is not cross-listed but is relevant to your research interests, consult with CLACS Assistant Director Amalia Córdova before enrolling to ensure that it will fulfill your degree requirements.
For a sample of previous course offerings, click here.
8. Where can I find information about current and past course offerings?
Visit Current Semester Course Schedule for the most recent courses offered at CLACS; for a sample of previous course offerings, visit the Course Offerings Bulletin.
9. How many CLACS students are pursuing dual degree/joint program studies?
Currently, there are about 15 students enrolled who are pursuing the joint GloJo program with Journalism. There are an additional 3 students in joint programs with Museum Studies.
11. What opportunities exist for students to pursue research abroad?
CLACS encourages students to conduct the research for their Master’s Projects in the summer between their second and third semesters. To facilitate research abroad, CLACS department offers Student Travel Grants each year, pending funding, which are awarded on a competitive basis. The department also offers competitive Summer FLAS Fellowships for intensive language study.
12. Does NYU offer a Ph.D. in Latin American and Caribbean Studies?
13. How much are tuition and fees for the M.A.?
The schedule for tuition and fees can be found on the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences website.
14. Is there financial aid available for M.A. students?
Yes. CLACS offers several grants and teaching assistantships to incoming and current students, on a competitive basis. For an overview of the departmental awards, please visit Student Fellowships. See also Foreign Language Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships.
In addition to departmental awards, New York University offers financial assistance in form of merit-based and need-based scholarships, grants and loans. To qualify for these awards, you must fill out the FAFSA form. More information can be found on Graduate School of Arts and Sciences website and the NYU Office of Financial Aid.
15. How do I go about applying for the M.A. in Latin American and Caribbean Studies?
To apply, please visit GSAS Application Resource Center for instructions and to download an application.
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For Current Students1. Who is my academic advisor? Can it be any faculty member?
Students’ primary academic advisors are the Center’s Director and the Faculty Fellow Professors Carmen Medeiros and Rafael Sanchez. Students are encouraged to establish contacts with other faculty working in the area of their interests, as these professors could serve both as additional advisors and readers for the students’ Master’s Project.
2. What resources are available for jobs and internships?
CLACS has compiled a comprehensive guide to the NYU-wide career-related resources available to our students. Please visit our Career Development Resources page for more information.
Previous CLACS students have interned at non-profit organizations, news organizations, schools, cultural centers, and think tanks. For a listing of some of these organizations, please visit our Internships page..
The Center also offers Internship Seminar, taken in conjunction with a CLACS-approved internship. Along with completion of internship requirements during one semester of studies, CLACS masters students register for the course in which they develop scholarly work – usually a course paper – putting their internship experiences into academic focus. They work closely with the Internship Coordinator to ensure that their experiences are in line with their career goals.
We encourage our students to take advantage also of the plethora of job-related resources available to them through the NYU’s Wasserman Center.
3. Can classes be “shopped” (during the first week, can students drop in on a class and decide whether or not they would like to register for that class?)
Students can contact the professors and sit in on the first class without registering for it.
The last day to add a class without late fees is the end of the 2nd week of classes. Keep in mind, however, that space is usually limited, so the sooner you make the decision, the better.
For a full refund schedule for dropping a class, please visit the Bursar’s website.
4. Is there a liaison in the library for CLACS subject matter?
Yes. Angela Carreño is the librarian for Latin American Studies and Caribbean Studies. To make an appointment, please contact her via email at email@example.com or by phone at (212) 998-2606.
5. What resources are most useful to CLACS students in the library?
For a comprehensive listing of bibliographic resources and databases about Latin America and the Caribbean, please visit Latin American Studies page of the Bobst Library.
6. Are there other libraries/collections outside of the NYU system that can be helpful for research?
Full-time NYU faculty, full-time NYU students, and part-time students in degree programs have access and borrowing privileges at these non-NYU libraries: Brooklyn Historical Society Othmer Library, Cooper Union Library, New School Libraries (Raymond Fogelman Social Sciences and Humanities Library, Adam and Sophie Gimbel Art and Design Library, Scherman Music Library, New-York Historical Society and New York School of Interior Design Library. Holdings for these Consortium libraries are listed in BobCat.
7. What kinds of jobs have recent graduates of the CLACS program secured?
Almost fifty percent of recent CLACS graduates have secured jobs in the field of education, either working as teachers, professors or researchers or entering competitive PhD programs. Others have found placement in non-profit organizations, newspapers, and think tanks. Several have also pursued government work, taking advantage of the depth of knowledge the program provided to them in the arena of foreign policy. Most of our students continue to be involved with Latin American regional issues, as they pursue careers in the field of international relations.
8. How is CLACS involved in K-12 schools in New York City and how can I get involved?
Designated a National Resource Center by the U.S. Department of Education, CLACS is committed to providing resources and professional development assistance to K-12 educators through teacher training workshops, language resource development programs and via direct collaboration with New York City schools. We partner with Steinhardt School of Education MetroCenter to aid the New York City area teaching professionals in acquiring tools that will help them better address the needs of their diverse student population. More information can be found on the website under “Special Programs.” There are many ways that you can get involved! To learn more about how to get involved, please contact the Assistant Director Amalia Córdova and visit the Metro Center website.
10. What is the CLACS blog and how can I contribute?
CLACS blog is a place for students and faculty to write about anything and everything that they are doing, reading and thinking about, and which relates to their work here at the Center. Students have written about their research, their experiences in classes and inspirational films and books they’ve come across in their studies. All students are invited to contribute!
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Student Life1. Housing - where should I live? Are there any apartment listings just for students?
Graduate student housing is limited and applications are prioritized in coordination with each graduate school. For more information, visit NYU Department of Housing. NYU Off-Campus Housing Office compiles apartments listings and provides assistance to current and newly-admitted NYU students, faculty, and staff who are not eligible for or not interested in NYU student housing.
2. Where are good places to study?
The lounge at Wasserman Center for Career Development is a great place to study – large round tables overlook 14th Street, and there is free tea and coffee. Another good place is 8th floor in Bobst library. Some people work well in Bobst’s reference section, a place for those who do not mind a bit of commotion. Finally, Think Coffee located at 248 Mercer Street is another favorite of our students (be warned, it can get a bit noisy here).
3. Are there work opportunities at NYU?
Yes. NYU offers work-study opportunities (if you qualify for a financial aid package, it will most likely include a federal work-study) and other on-campus employment. To find out what positions are available and to learn more, visit Wasserman Center For Career Development. Students in past semesters have also held part-time positions in the CLACS office and also in other departments. Once enrolled, students have an easier time finding out about these opportunities and securing part-time work positions.
4. Where do I pick up my NYU ID?
Students can pick up their NYU ID at 7 East 12th Street, on the ground floor.
5. I’ve received my University e-Bill and have questions about it. Who do I talk to?
For questions about your account, call Bursar’s office at (212) 998-2806 or visit their website.
6. When can I receive my stipend checks? Where?
First fellowship and assistantship checks are available on September 5th. Fellowship recipients can pick up their checks at Graduate Enrollment Services located at One-Half Fifth Avenue; assistantship checks are distributed at the CLACS department.
Students are encouraged, however, to enroll in the University’s direct deposit program. Direct deposit allows students to receive their funds easily. Access to funds is faster than if the student were to deposit a check. To download a direct deposit application, click here.
7. Is my stipend check distributed in one lump sum per semester, or is it distributed every month?
Fellowship and assistantship checks are not distributed in one lump sum; rather, there are 9 disbursement dates each semester. Download a PDF with Stipend Award Information for more details.
8. How soon can I visit the Student Health Center and be covered by my NYU health insurance?
Matriculated students can begin using their health insurance as soon as they are enrolled in classes.
9. What is included in the comprehensive plan?
For a full description of different plan options, please download a PDF of the Student Health Insurance Handbook.
10. Is dental insurance included?
Dental insurance is not included in the NYU Health Insurance, but can be purchased separately. To learn more about Stu-Dent Plan offered through the NYU College of Dentistry, please go to their website.