Student Testimonials

Hannah Noel ’08

Hannah Noel '08“Latina/o Studies is important to the Williams community because it allows students and faculty to observe, critique and address current social and political issues throughout the hemisphere in an interdisciplinary way that incorporates new media and performance studies along with more traditional academic scholarship. More specifically, my Latina/o Studies classes at Williams have forced me to consider Latina/o populations in the United States not just from a variety of points of view, but from different ways of viewing.”

David DeVaughn ’07

David DeVaughn '07“Latin@ Studies is not a fringe discipline only for Latin@ students taught by Latin@ professors. Yes, I was the only non-Latin@ Latin@ Studies concentrator in the class of 2007, but the issues covered and the support for all students let me know that it is not an exclusive club. Every other class I took at Williams was expanded by the concepts and theory taught in Latin@ Studies classes and overall gave me a different perspective on history. Do not let your peers or other faculty members paint Ethnic Studies classes as unimportant/waste of time because they do not fall under the “classically” held disciplines. Latin@ Studies in fact expands upon the knowledge found within those disciplines, and with a multidisciplinary approach, tackles historical issues. Take a class. You owe it to the country/world in which we actually live.”

Leydy Abreu ’08

“The Latina/o Studies courses helped me learn about and understand a history I never realized existed. Because of the interesting courses and the dynamic and supportive faculty in the department, Latina/o Studies courses were some of my most exciting classes. Although we might not realize it, there have always been ties between the United States and Latin America that constitute a history that still affects Latinos living in the United States. Engaging in a Latina/o Studies concentration, or simply taking the classes allow us to delve into a history that is so often ignored that we do not even perceive it exists. Ultimately the biggest lesson I learned from my Latina/o Studies concentration was to be open-minded to ideas I never considered and to be able to critically analyze alternative perspectives.”

Kevin Delucio ’10

“Latina/o Studies was not something I originally planned on studying in depth; being Latino and from California, I felt that I was essentially familiar with the Latina/o culture. However, after one class I realized how naïve I really was. There are so many differences within the Latina/o culture and these differences bring so much to the table in an attempt to define what a “Latina/o” is. The breadth of courses the department offers is incredible and it really shows how the Latino culture affects and is affected by the world where it is implanted. I can approach the Latino culture from various points of view, which enables freedom to study individual interests as well as open doors into disciplines I may have never thought of exploring. The professors are knowledgeable and relay material in an engaging manner that allows me to think critically and form important opinions about issues that are present and important in today’s society. The profs are also just cool people to have a conversation with; any LATS gathering is always bound to be fun and lively!”

Amanda Raquel Santiago ’08

Amanda Raquel Santiago '08“The ability to concentrate in Latina/o Studies at Williams was an amazing learning experience for me. Aside from learning about my own culture, it gave me the experience to learn about other Latina/o cultures. I think the greatest part about being a concentrator was the fact that many of the courses offered here in this department were cross-listed. It was great because you were able to learn about different Latina/o cultures in a variety of disciplines (i.e. Art History, English, etc.). I strongly recommend any person to take on this concentration during their time here as an undergraduate.”

Salvador Villa ’10

Salvador Villa '10“Taking courses in the Latina/o Studies department has proved to be one of the major highlights of my Williams education. The interdisciplinary nature of the course materials allows for a much more intimate exploration and understanding of reoccurring historical themes such as hegemony, class struggle, and representation, giving students a much more integrated view of Latina/o experiences in the United States. Definitely take as many courses as you can in this department. After all, the concentration only requires five courses and complements every major offered at Williams.”

Bryant Lewis ’09

Bryant Lewis '09“Latina/o Studies has been much more than an academic program focusing on domestic Latina/o issues. The concentration has offered me the tools necessary to critically analyze contemporary social issues such as globalization, transnationalism, immigration and citizenship—issues that affect more than just the Latina/o population in the United States. The theories studied are crucial in providing coherent frameworks to discuss these social issues that are central to our everyday lives. The Latina/o Studies concentration has truly been complementary to my other studies at Williams, providing a backdrop to discuss the ways in which each category of difference (race, gender, class, etc.) is negotiated within American public space. I urge anyone and everyone to consider concentrating if they enjoy thinking and writing effectively about contemporary social that are too central to ignore.”