Why Chicano & Latino Studies?

Our vision for the Department of Chicano & Latino Studies at the University of Minnesota is inspired by words taken from El Plan de Santa Barbara, the founding document of a national movement to establish Chicano studies at the University:

We take as our credo what Jose Vasconcelos once said at a time of crisis and hope: ‘At this moment we do not come to work for the University, but to demand that the University work for our people.’

To that end, we strive to achieve our departmental mission by offering a rigorous undergraduate degree program that is complemented by extensive civic engagement, outreach efforts, and public programming activities.

Our goals and values

One of our goals is to support and increase the presence of Chicanos and Latinos in the intellectual, political, and social professions, both within and beyond the Midwest. Both of these efforts promote cultural affirmation, social justice values, and community service.

Our curriculum is structured to prepare students in our classes for the complex social issues that face the Chicano and Latino community so they may be informed, articulate, and engaged as citizens and advocates for promoting community well-being.

Students in our courses gain insight into cultural dynamics, social processes, and the historical significance of the contributions of Chicanos as a group. Students also develop the necessary analytical and methodological skills to better understand the emerging multicultural character of the nation and the key role that Chicanos and Latinos play in society.

Whether you know a little or a lot about Chicanos and Latinos in Minnesota or the US, we invite you take a class, and consider majoring or minoring in Chicano and Latino studies.