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Latin American Studies 


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We want our alumni to stay connected to the people and events in our department and at UC San Diego. For news and a list of upcoming events, please subscribe to our newsletter. 

You are a valuable resource for our current and prospective students. Please contact us if you are interested in speaking with current students, if you have information about Latin American Studies internship opportunities that you would like to share, or if you would like to attend colloquia or other program special events.

  • Michael Ferrari

    Michael Ferrari

    Class of 2023


    Prior to completing his MA in Latin American Studies, Michael completed his undergraduate degree in Finance at CSU Northridge and later completed an MBA degree at Pepperdine University, while working a number of years in commercial lending. Michael's research at UC San Diego observed exchange rate preferences and experiences resulting from macroeconomic policy. 

    Research Project: 

    "Family Famers, Solidarity, and Exchange Rates Preferences in Southern Brazil" 

    Research Interests: Political Economy, Solidarity Economy, Developmental Economics, and Economic History in Latin America
    Michael looks forward to pursuing his career in developmental economics, contributing towards socio-economic inclusion. 
    Contact Michael:
  • Andrea Garfio

    Andrea Garfio

    Class of 2023


    Andrea completed a Master's Degree in Latin American Studies in the spring of 2023 with interests in Mexico-US relations, immigration, race, ethnicity, and discrimination at the border.

    Research Project:

    "A Central American Limbo State: The Effects of Racialization in an Imagined Safe Third Country"

    She wishes to pursue her career working closely with newly-arrived migrants, providing basic needs and information about their rights.

    Contact Andrea:

  • Thomas Maggiola

    Thomas Maggiola

    Class of 2023


    Before coming to San Diego, he completed his BA in International Relations and Latin American Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. For his MA thesis, he researched the role of transnational linkages in the Guatemalan Civil War, focusing on ideological formation and solidarity networks.

    Research Project:

    "Certain Triumph: The Left and Guatemala's Transnational Civil War, 1960-1996"

    Watch Thesis Video 

    Research Interests: Central America, Refugees, Transnational History, Cold War, International Organizations, Solidarity Networks, South-South Relations, Oral History

    Thomas is pursuing a PhD in History at Columbia University

    Contact Thomas:


  • Shane Salomon Prince

    Shane Salomon Prince

    Class of 2023


    Shane Prince is an alumni from the Caribbean. He graduated from the University of the West Indies St Augustine with a double major BA (Hons) in Latin American Studies and Spanish. Prior to completing his undergraduate degree, Shane lived and worked in the Venezuelan state of Lara for a number of years. While there, he developed a keen interest in exploring the many connections between his home country (Trinidad and Tobago) and his adoptive one (Venezuela). With a decade of teaching experience under him, Shane won a Fulbright scholarship from the US government and used it to attend graduate school in San Diego, California. In 2023, Shane graduated from UC San Diego’s Latin American Studies program with an MA degree and a sociology concentration.

    Research Project: 

    "On Becoming a Migration State: Immigration Control in Small-Island, Decolonized
    States – The Trinidad and Tobago Case"

    Watch Thesis Video

    Research Interests: Dictatorship in Latin America, Sociology of Migration, Caribbean Immigration, Venezuelan Culture and Politics, Trinidad and Tobago Colonial History, Immigration control in the Westminster Caribbean.

    Upon completion of his studies at UC San Diego, Shane returned to his hometown of Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago where he continues to teach Spanish at both the high school and college levels. Additionally, Shane is continuing his work as a newly minted sociologist and is currently investigating the linkages between homelessness in Trinidad and Tobago and deportation from global North countries such as the US, Canada and the UK. Shane is currently working on several academic projects for publication and intends to next pursue a doctoral degree in sociology.

    Contact Shane:, +1 868 758 8097

  • Troy Araiza Kokinis, PhD

    Troy Araiza Kokinis, PhD

    Class of 2013

    Research Project: 

    "Basque Culture and Identity in Buenos Aires, Argentina"


    "I really enjoyed the support and guidance to conduct research outside of the United States. I had a wonderful cohort that maintained a tight-knit chemistry for both years in the program, including a robust social life outside of the institution. We cooked together, travelled, danced. Some of these folks are still very close friends a decade after we all finished."

    After completing his M.A. in Latin American Studies, Troy pursued an PhD in History (UCSD). He is currently a Lecturer at UC San Diego in LAS. 

    Contact Troy:

  • David Scott FitzGerald, PhD

    David Scott FitzGerald, PhD

    Class of 2000

    Research Project: 

    "Negotiation Extraterritorial Citizenship"


    "This program gave me the space to reinvent myself and become a professional researcher, author, and teacher."

    After completing his M.A. in Latin American Studies, David pursued an M.A. in Sociology (UCLA) and a PhD in Sociology (UCLA). He is currently a professor at UC San Diego in the Sociology Department. 

    Contact David: